One day, the master and his disciples sat in silent meditation in the monastery.
Suddenly, a loud clatter rang through the halls as the cook’s assistant tripped and dropped a number of empty pans he was bringing to the kitchen.
The disciples were all disturbed from their meditation and expressed their irritation by muttering and frowning. But when they looked at the master, he seemed as relaxed and calm as ever.
“How could you maintain your silence and meditation amidst the noise a while ago?” asked a few disciples later.
The master replied, “You must understand, my friends, that silence is not the absence of sound. Silence is the absence of self.”