November 2001 (Vol. XIV, No. 10)

Peace-filled and hope-filled prayer FROM THE SILENCE, dear friends. Though our hearts are heavy, tried by fire in so many areas of our world and individual lives, may we remember that out of the deep well-springs of Silence come healing waters, the still Voice of Love, inspirations to know how to respond in these difficult times, and the courage and strength to speak out and act with great integrity and compassion. May each of us pause in the Silence for a few moments throughout the day to send peace, love, and healing to our wounded world. How each of us lives and thinks makes a BIG difference!

With silence as the single companion

As they talked together of The Way, the obstacles, the people, the signs ... you felt the great importance of the physicality of the quest. All of them stressed the power of silence: the need to be alone and find oneself in the silence. Moving alone, with silence as the single companion, seems a most profound means to register the natural balance of the world without, and world within.

~ from ON PILGRIMAGE by Jennifer Lash

Without a word but in perfect communication

There are times when we go on a long tramp with someone for whom we greatly care. There has been talk, but it has now faded, and we can stalk mile after mile together without a word but in perfect communication – each glad for the other's presence, each glad the other is alive, each grateful to be the other's friend, each feeling understood, each cherishing the other.
~ from DIMENSIONS IN PRAYER by Douglas Steere

The purpose of silence

The purpose of silence is to unite the world of things with the world of spirit and thus give the fairest life in all the world to body, mind, and soul.

~ by Christian D. Larson

There is nothing in the world that resembles God as much as silence

 Silence is a privileged entry into the realm of God and into eternal life. There is a huge silence inside each of us that beckons us into itself, and the recovery of our own silence an begin to teach us the language of heaven. For, silence is a language that is infinitely deeper, more far-reaching, more understanding, more compassionate, and more eternal than any other language... There is nothing in the world that resembles God as much as silence.

~ by Meister Eckhardt with thanks to Craig Stevenson

A silent heart is a loving heart

True silence is a key to the immense and flaming heart of God. It is the beginning of a divine courtship that will end only in the immense, creative, fruitful, loving silence of final union with the Beloved... This silence, then, will break forth in a charity that overflows in the service of the neighbor without counting the cost. Availability will become delightsome and easy, for in each person the soul will see the face of love. Hospitality will e deep and real, for a silent heart is a loving heart, and a loving heart is a hospice to the world.

~ from POUSTINIA by Catherine de Heuck Doherty

Our culture is losing the art of silence

Our culture is losing the art of silence, and with it the intrinsic human understanding and capacity for prayer. Silent dwellers, by creating spacious times of physical silence in their lives, slowly recover the human capacity to be with themselves in a caring gentle way. For, it is in silence and solitude that one learns – or regains – the human quality of being in God's presence always.

~ from SILENT DWELLERS by Barbara Erakko-Taylor

That which saves society

That which saves society is not that which can be seen upon the surface of things. It is not the power of industry, of war, of genius, of letter or arts. It is what touches its depths in a silence called the silence of good things. -- From a NY Times interview

~ by M. Puglisi thanks to Donna Ellingson

Great silence

The small truth has words that are clear;
The great truth has great silence

~ by Rabindranath Tagore

When the Word weds silence

When the word weds silence,
It becomes a prayer

~ Anonymous

Being silent means waiting

Being silent means waiting, waiting for the Other to say something to us. Being silent before God means making room for God ... to breathe in the will of God, to listen attentively. The time of silence is a time of responsibility, of blessedness, because it is a time when we live in the peace of God. "For God alone my soul in silence waits."
~ from MEDITATING ON THE WORD by Dietrich Bonhoeffer

The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair

The friend who can be silent with us in a moment of despair or confusion, who can stay with us in an hour of grief or bereavement, who can tolerate not knowing, not curing, not healing, and face us with the reality of our powerlessness, that is a friend who cares.

~ by Henri J. M. Nouwen with thanks to Catherine Tiedel

Hungry for silence

Persons hungry for silence and for solitude seek a depth of contemplative experience in which one's usual assumptions about daily life are brought into question. The hunger for retreat carries with it a recognition that there is no other way out of many situations in which we find ourselves in the complexity of our lives. There is no other way than to take our messes into the darkness of silence before the Beloved... that by going into this silence, darkness, and helplessness can life be brought forth to sustain either ourselves or our world.
~ from "Come Apart and Rest Awhile" by Frances Irene Taber

Silence is our real nature

Silence is our real nature... Holy and healing, there is no fear in silence. Silence is autonomous like love and beauty and untouched by time. Silence is meditation, free from any intention, free from anyone who meditates. Silence is the absence of oneself. And the one established in silence lives in constant offering, in prayer without asking, in thankfulness, in continual love.
~ Author unknown, with thanks to Ann LaVallee

The capacity for silence

The capacity for silence — a deep creative awareness of one's inner truth — distinguishes us as human.

~ S. Wendy Beckett

When silence enters

When silence enters
The whole universe changes
But the birds still sing.

~ by Edith Wallace

The strength of the interior life

SILENCE is the strength and pace of the interior life.

~ Anonymous

The simplicity of willing one thing

Monks call us to the simplicity of willing one thing: in a culture intent on a high standard of living, they insist on a high standard of life. Achievement versus grace: the exposure of the emptiness of fullness for the fullness of emptiness. The heart of this subversion is in planting within a person the appetite for silence. And once planted, once one tastes silence, and listening, and stopping, and being flooded by a Depth beyond all words ... once you do nothing, say nothing, think nothing, but just let yourself BE ... if you ever let this happen, it's all over for you. From then on, everything else seems insane.
~ from A SEASON IN THE DESERT by W. Paul Jones, thanks to H. A. Hull