fall

I used to be stone deaf

I used to be stone deaf. I would see people stand up and go through all kinds of gyrations. They called it dancing. It looked absurd to me -- until one day I heard the music!

~ from THE SONG OF THE BIRD by Anthony de Mello
The Song of the Bird
By Anthony De Mello

A new vision comes

A new vision comes when I can stop looking into the blazing sun that blinds me, and I learn to focus more on deeper, more intimate and hidden beauties and light. It's then that I begin to feel a taste and a hunger for a new love and a new vision that calls me further on. It's then that I can begin to hear a quiet gentle voice within calling to me, inviting me, telling me that I have an immense value, because I am loved and wanted -- not for what I possess or what I have achieved, but simply for what I am. And what I am is this unique person, quite unlike anyone else, with my own story and my own very special light shining in my eyes. This uniqueness of mine comes from one source alone. It comes from the loving call to me by my name from the Author, the Creator and the End of my life. This is the road of your life and mine.

~ from A JOURNEY IN THE COMPANY OF GOD by Brother Andrew

i am a little church

i am a little church (far from the frantic
world with its rapture and anguish) at peace with nature
i do not worry if longer nights grow longest;
i am not sorry when silence becomes singing.

~ e.e. cummings
Selected Poems
By E. E. Cummings

'Tis good to celebrate

'Tis good to celebrate in the Silence those
Moments of gratitude for the friends who have
walked with me ...
There is always a return gift waiting in my heart.
It is for those who took off their shoes
to be reverent with my coming,
For those who stood on tiptoes beside me
when my hope was small.
It is for those who were present
when I needed my feet washed.
It is for those who raced with me to the tomb
on the day I was certain it held
nothing but death.
It is for those who celebrated my emptiness
with me and
For those who broke with me the kind of bread
that fed my death new life.

~ from SEASONS OF YOUR HEART: PRAYERS & REFLECTIONS by Macrina Wiederkehr

The meaning of the contemplative life is love

The meaning of the contemplative life -- of all spiritual life -- is love. Love is at once the origin, the means, and the goal of human spirituality, and when seen through spiritual eyes, the meaning of life in its entirety is love. God's love is endless, boundless without qualifications. Love must create, and we human beings and all the rest of creation are continually born in and from God's love. Creation brings forth diversity and separation. This permits a sense of "me and you," "I and thou," lover and beloved. In other words, we are created as unique individuals so that we may love God and one another. Love is the reason for our being. In our individuality and separateness, each of us is given a longing for re-union, a yearning for the greater fulfillment of love. In the endless movements of love, there is delicate beauty, majestic power, unbearable joy and considerable pain -- and freedom.

~ from "To Love - or to Die!" by Gerald May

Live outward silence

IN A CITY NOT FORSAKEN, the Jerusalem Community Rule of Life invites all to enter into the mystery of silence:

Silence is the well-spring of your prayer at the heart of the city and the daily peace of your soul ... In the crucible of silence you will learn holiness, since silence is the door to humility, contemplation and mercy. By leading you to self-forgetting, silence will allow you to discover God and in the heart of God, you will rediscover the world by God's light. So live outward silence and enjoy it inwardly and you will taste the perfect delight of those who keep the commandments in their hearts and dwell silently in God's love.

~ from IN A CITY NOT FORSAKEN

Let all the earth keep silence

May we each answer the call to let ourselves be defined by God at any given moment, let ourselves be attuned to our essential course of action, without loosing or abandoning any one of our own unique qualities and gifts. May we, like Mary, discover the secret of true silence.

"Let all the earth keep silence before God!"

~ Nan Merrill

We will be healed by the weak

Faith and Sharing celebrated their twentieth year with a retreat in Montreal in July. Jean Vanier shared out of his experience in the Faith and Light and the L'Arche Communities around the world the healing power of the poor. "The power of the powerless is to touch people in their hearts ... We will be healed by the weak ... To love someone is to reveal they are important, to reveal their beauty, to spend time with them."

~ from WELCOMING JESUS IN THE POOR by Jean Vanier

This we know

This we know:
The earth does not belong to us
We belong to the earth.

All things are connected
Like the blood which unites one family

We do not weave the web of life
We are merely a strand in it.

And whatever we do to the web
We do to ourselves!

~ Chief Seattle (1854) with thanks to Maria Henry

Silence is sound from the future

"Silence is sound from the future, an intimation of eternity. Eternity has begun for me. I carry eternity within me; it is slowly, silently growing out of me. More is becoming eternalized, forevered. 'Whoever really possesses the Word of Jesus can sense also his silence' (Ignatius of Antioch). Silence is our way of going into the desert, into eternity ... We each carry our own found anywhere else. Another can enable us to discover the hidden silence within ourselves. It is a special gift to receive the depth silence of another. Silence is a presence, a receptivity, a readiness, a waiting, a listening."

~ from CELTIC MEDITATIONS by Edward J. Farrell
Celtic Meditations
By Edward J. Farrell
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