Absence of thoughts is different than the awareness being roused.
For example, a bad day in Samsara can make one more aware of dukkha, and can rouse the awareness that one has dukkha and not clear release and knowing. This is a better place to start from: rousing the awareness, and setting mindfulness front and center. Ultimately Samsara is Nirvana.
Knowing this will quiet thoughts. One needs to be discontent, dissatisfied with samasara on the dukkha side. If one can find the quiet that rises up to overcome dukkha, that's a day-to-day practice.
"Now this, bhikkhus, is the noble truth of suffering: birth is suffering, aging is suffering, illness is suffering, death is suffering; union with what is displeasing is suffering; separation from what is pleasing is suffering; not to get what one wants is suffering; in brief, the five aggregates subject to clinging are suffering.
Now this, bhikkhus, is the noble truth of the origin of suffering: it is this craving [taṇhā, "thirst"] which leads to re-becoming, accompanied by delight and lust, seeking delight here and there; that is, craving for sensual pleasures, craving for becoming, craving for disbecoming.
Now this, bhikkhus, is the noble truth of the cessation of suffering: it is the remainderless fading away and cessation of that same craving, the giving up and relinquishing of it, freedom from it, non-reliance on it.
Now this, bhikkhus, is the noble truth of the way leading to the cessation of suffering: it is this noble eightfold path; that is, right view, right intention, right speech, right action, right livelihood, right effort, right mindfulness, right concentration."