many sanghas (groups of people who support one another) have a rule when they gather. it's that when someone finishes speaking the others allow a space of silence after...at least ten seconds. have you ever sat in a group of twenty people where someone shares something deeply personal and it's followed by a long period of silence? it's AWKWARD! but when the awkward part (the first few seconds) passes, something settles. rather than stifle, frame, shut down, validate, or challenge what was said, nobody responds. nobody tries to fix anyone or solve any problem. the prereflective stage of listening drifts into silence and into another phase of listening, inward. it's rather liberating to do nothing.
and for those of you who don't find solace in this thought, just consider for a second how many things your physiological system is "doing" to balance you out, right now, as you do..."nothing". so this doing nothing is really quite something isn't it?
the quality i find that emerges from not doing is allowing, and allowing is a powerful teacher. a constant reminder that i don't know...well anything really, about anything. and within these limitations of not knowing, i, you, we, are all free...previously caged animals running wild, sniffing each others asses, trying to figure out what's going on (sorry, lots of dogs sniffing each others asses here in mysore...it was the first thing that came to mind).
or as chogyam trungpa put it, "The bad news is you’re falling through the air, nothing to hang on to, no parachute. The good news is there’s no ground".