January 1996 (Vol. IX, No. 1)

Heartfelt greetings, dear frinds, as Friends of Silence newsletter begins its nineth year. May this be a new beginning of PEACE in the quietude of our hearts ... a peace that radiates out to our suffering sisters and brothers around the world. "Let there be peace on Earth, and let it begin with me!"

The practice of contemplative prayer is especially valuable for advancing harmony and peace in the world

The practice of contemplative prayer is especially valuable for advancing harmony and peace in the world. For this prayer rises, by divine grace, where there is total disarmament of the heart and unfolds in an experience of love which is the moving force of peace. Contemplation fosters a vision of the human family as united and interdependent in the mystery of God's love for all people. This silent interior prayer bridges temporarily the "already" and "not yet", this world and God's Kingdom of peace.

~ Pastoral Statement "The Challenge of Peace"

Peace lies hidden beneath the distorting veils of faulty perceptions

Although the mind's natural state is one of peace, for most of us this peace lies hidden beneath the distorting veils of faulty perceptions, thoughts and beliefs. Peace has become something that must be rediscovered and remembered through training the mind to correct its distortions. Only by training the mind to correct distorted thoughts and perceptions can the gift of peace be experienced. Peace of mind is clearly an internal matter. It must begin with your own thoughts and then extend outward. It is from your peace of mind that a peaceful perception of the world arises.

~ from A GIFT OF PEACE by Frances Vaughan & Roger Walsh
A Gift of Peace
By Frances Vaughan, Roger Walsh

A person who truly "is peace"

The inner stillness of a person who truly "is peace" brings peace to the whole interconnected web of life, both inner and outer.

~ Jack Kornfield

All miracles are due to the silent and effective working of invisible forces

Gandhi reminds us that "all miracles are due to the silent and effective working of invisible forces", of which he believes nonviolence to be the most invisible and most effective. But even more subtle and invisible is the power of the Holy Spirit working through love, a love that knows no defeat because it has abandoned the need for success.

~ Walter Wink in "The Other Side", July/August 1993

Our greatest resource in reversing the effects of this violent culture

Our greatest resource in reversing the effects of this violent culture, and changing it into a culture of peace, comes from spirituality, and all that rich term implies... Profoundly transformative, it can dissolve the destructive patterns of the culture of violence which have held us captive for so long a time. Spirituality, as the inner yearning of the heart for the Divine, for the Real, awakens in us openness, gentleness, patience, deep reverence for all life forms, including the earth, intense compassion for all sentient beings, and an all-inclusive love, agape, that embraces the totality.

~ from "The Reversal of Violence" by Wayne Teasdale in "Fellowship in Prayer"

From compassion comes peace

From a quiet mind comes vision;
From vision comes knowledge of unity;
From knowledge of unity comes compassion for all.
From compassion comes peace.
~ Unknown

Meditation is the art of paying attention

Meditation is the art of paying attention, of listening to your heart. Rather than withdrawing from the world, meditation can help you enjoy it more fully, more effectively, and more peacefully.

~ Dean Ornish

The fruit of Service is Peace

The fruit of Silence is Prayer.
The fruit of Prayer is Faith.
The fruit of Faith is Love.
The fruit of Love is Service.
The fruit of Service is Peace.

~ Mother Theresa
No Greater Love
By Mother Teresa

The power of quiet is great

The power of quiet is great. It generates the same feelings in everything one encounters. It vibrates with the cosmic rhythm of oneness. It is everywhere, available to anyone at any time. It is us, the force within that makes us stable, trusting and loving. It is contemplation contemplating us. Peace is letting go -- returning to the silence that cannot enter the realm of words because it is too pure to be contained in words. This is why the tree, the stone, the river and the mountain are quiet.

~ from OF WATER AND THE SPIRIT by Malidoma Patrice Some

The Art of peace

If you have not linked yourself to
true emptiness,
You will never understand
the Art of peace.

~ Morihei Ueshiba

Still night

An old Rabbi once asked the pupils how they could tell when night had ended and day had begun.

"Could it be," asked one of the students, "When you can see an animal in the distance and tell whether it is a sheep or a dog?"

"No," answered the Rabbi.

Another asked, "Is it when you can look at a tree in the distance and tell whether it's a fig tree or a peach tree?"

”No," answered the Rabbi.

"Then when is it?" the pupils demanded.

"It is when you can look on the face of any man or woman and see that it is your sister or brother. Because if you cannot see this, it is still night."

~ Hasidic tale told in PEACEMAKING DAY BY DAY by Pax Christi 0966628551

The task of making peace

The task of making peace ... is not just a matter of realpolitik; it is a matter also of spirit. It requires us not only to deal with the practicalities of our place in the cosmic order of things. We must know who we are and what we are doing -- know not only with the intellect, but with our whole being, in the way that mystics have always achieved the knowledge that has given our species its deepest guidance.

~ from OUT OF WEAKNESS by Andrew B. Schmookler

Deep peace

Deep peace of the Running Wave to you.
Deep peace of the Flowing Air to you.
Deep peace of the Quiet Earth to you.
Deep peace of the Shining Stars to you.
Deep peace of the Heart of Love to you.

~ a Celtic benediction

Peace Prayer

Lead me from death to life, from falsehood to truth,
Lead me from despair to hope, from fear to trust,
Lead me from hate to love, from war to peace,
Let peace fill our hearts, our world, our universe.

~ Anonymous

Silence

Silence
utter quiet
mind being still
blessed certainty growing within
peace.

~ David Jefferson