stillness

June1990 (Vol. III, No. 6)

"Is there enough Silence for the Word to be heard?"

Our love has been anything but perfect

Our love has been anything but perfect and anything but static. Inevitably there have been times when one of us has outrun the other and has had to wait patiently for the other to catch up. There have been times when we have misunderstood each other, demanded too much of each other, been insensitive to the other's needs. I do not believe there is any marriage where this does not happen. The growth of love is not a straight line, but a series of hills and valleys. I suspect that in every good marriage there are times when love seems to be over. Sometimes these desert lines are simply the only way to the next oasis, which is far more lush and beautiful after the desert crossing than it could possibly have been without it.

~ from TWO-PART INVENTION by Madeleine L'Engle

Spiritual pilgrimage involves solitary searching

Spiritual pilgrimage involves solitary searching, receiving help and guidance from others, and offering help to others. It is a journey of deepening willingness and clarifying vision ... a process of reconciling will and spirit. In it, one seeks to find, and realizes with increasing certainty that one has already been found. There is company for each of us in this: of those men and women who have gone before ... of our spiritual guides and those whom we may help guide ... of our own community of faith. There is also the vast company of the rest of our contemporaries on this planet, the great body of sisters and brothers of all races, ages and faiths who seek to know and live in the Way of Ultimate Love ... And in the realm of contemplative quiet, beyond all ideas, beyond our rainbowed images of God and self, beyond belief, we share the same silence. We are rooted all together in the ground of consciousness that is God's gift to us all.

~ from WILL & SPIRIT by Gerald May, M.D.

Putting one's heart into one's prayer

"It is better to put one's heart into one's prayer without finding the right words, than to find the right words without putting one's heart into them."

~ Gandhi

A blessed weakness this human heart

God's grace and attraction touch the human person at the most vulnerable points of existence. Response to this movement in our hearts leads us to compassion, joy, celebration and forgiveness. The heart is that which can be attracted, touched, moved, acted upon. It is called affective, able to be affected, inasmuch as it is drawn and does not move under its own power. Those who act from the heart, moved by God to compassion, become signs of God's love and tenderness. This is the significance of the affirmation that the person is the heart. Created in the image of God, a God who is all love and compassion, we act in harmony with our nature when we manifest the qualities of the heart that are revealed to us in weakness, not in our strength. The seeds of the divine life within and the capacities of the human heart are found in weakness. A blessed weakness this human heart!

~ from A BLESSED WEAKNESS: THE SPIRIT OF JEAN VANIER AND L'ARCHE by Michael Downey

Joy

Joy is the most infallible sign of the presence of god.
~ Leon Bloy
The Woman Who Was Poor: A Novel
By Leon Bloy, I. J. Collins

Silence is no passive thing

Silence is no passive thing. It is a vibrant presence which fills any vacuum in sound and conveys its own living quality. Most of us know the truth of the phrase "the silence that sounds," and the old adage "silence is golden" means more than just that it is safe or wise. It means that it is golden in the sense of being filled with light.

~ from THE SILENT PATH by Michael Eastcott with thanks to Rita Adams
Silent Path
By Michal J. EASTCOTT

Time is one's best friend

Time is one's best friend, teaching best of all the wisdom of silence.
~ from TABLE TALK by Alcott
Table-Talk
By Amos Bronson Alcott

The silence beyond sound

All final spiritual reference is to be the silence beyond sound. The word made flesh is the first sound. Beyond that sound is the transcendent unknown, the unknowable. It can be spoken of as the great silence, or as the void, or as the transcendent absolute.

~ from THE POWER OF MYTH by Joseph Campbell
The Power of Myth
By Joseph Campbell

Words must be purified in a redemptive silence

Individuals live, as in a cell, in the narrow world of the words they utter -- every individual and every group. Words are no longer bridges linking the one to the other. Speech which is not heard only intensifies isolation and increases the babel of tongues. the clever ones profit by this. Less and less a helpful servant and more and more an instrument of propaganda, speech has become the vehicle for uneasy consciences. Words must be purified in a redemptive silence if they are to bear the message of peace ... For, a soul gathered in silent worship is never alone with God. It is always in communion with the soul of all other worshippers; its plunges it into that inward light which lightens every person."

~ from GOD IS SILENCE by Pierre Lacout with thanks to Donald and Lesley Holmes
God Is Silence
By Pierre Lacout
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