April 2007 (Vol. XX, No. 4)

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

Blessings in the Oneness of the Silence, dear friends!As we come to know that we, all of us, are unconditionally loved by the Beloved of all hearts, we may begin to sense our shared Oneness with Love ... As we come to understand that there is but One Mind that each of us participates in, a Universal Consciousness, we may begin to sense our Oneness with All. Everyone has been aware of eternal moments be they in nature, in a child's birth, in listening to sublime music, in glimpses of wonder, or in the sudden sense of Presence with us: each a Hint of heaven here on earth, of our own consciousness being expanded out into the Infinity of Oneness that we are. Fear and all its companions have no home here: Love is all there is.

A human being is part of the whole, called by us the "universe," a part limited in time and space. One experiences oneself, one's thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of one's consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the Oneness of nature in its beauty.

~ Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein oneness

To be fully human, we must recognize the full humanity of all other people. Each of us will be fully human only when we recognize the Aliveness of all Creation, when we learn to speak of God in Everything, and to humbly admit our interdependence and Oneness with the Great Web we call Creation.

~ Lisa Lofland Gould
Lisa Lofland Gould oneness

The people of the world are limbs from one body,
sharing one essence.
When a single limb is oppressed,
all the others suffer agony.

~ Sa'adi of Shiraz
Sa'adi of Shiraz oneness

Insects singing, larvae, pupae, seeds celebrating their fecundity, cones opening, draped boughs undulating from trunks connecting earth to sky, everything vital, everything expressing a divine Spirit, God filling all space. A single swirl of energy–birth, growth, feeding, breeding, decay–all of it continuous Life, teeming with mystery, and she a part of it.

She felt an incoming and an unfurling, a momentary mindlessness, a long-awaited union, a beautiful silent Oneness, and she was left with an unutterable calm.

~ from THE FOREST LOVER by Susan Vreeland
Susan Vreeland The Forest Lover oneness

"We did not weave the web of life," wrote Ted Perry in the spirit of Chief Seattle. "We are only a strand in it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourself. "The part can no longer make believe that it does not belong to the Whole or contribute to the life or death of the Whole. We are One great respiration, One great circulation, One great web of life over this round earth.

~ from CIRCLES OF HOPE by Bill Cane
Bill Cane Circles Of Hope oneness Buy on Amazon

The Oneness of each to all through God is real, objective, existential. It is an eternal relationship which is shared in by every stick and stone and bird and beast and saint and sinner of the universe. On all, the wooing love of God falls urgently, persuadingly.

~ from A TESTAMENT OF DEVOTION by Thomas Kelley
Thomas Kelley A Testament Of Devotion oneness Buy on Amazon

Creation separates the many from the One.
Spiritual evolution reunites the many with the One.

~ Jerry Thomas
Jerry Thomas oneness

O, Blessed Peacemaker
You make your Home in our hearts
as Loving Companion Presence.
With unreserved, radical trust,
our path is made sure.
Bonded in Love, we become empowered
to serve with mercy and justice:
One with You…
One with All.
Blessed are You, O Life of our lives.

~ from LUMEN CHRISTI, HOLY WISDOM by Nan Merrill
Nan Merrill Lumen Christi . . . Holy Wisdom oneness Buy on Amazon

The thoughts of the earth are my thoughts.
The voice of the earth is my voice.
All that belongs to the earth belongs to me.
All that surrounds the earth surrounds me.
It is lovely indeed, it is lovely indeed.

~ a Navajo Song
A Navajo Song oneness

The Spirit in all
when all become One,
Peace reigning on earth.

~ Dermot O'Brien
Dermot O'Brien oneness

May we all attend to reuniting our heads, hearts, and hands, taking time to be receptive, suspending judgment, and awaiting patiently for insights that arise, unbidden. May we practice being still and really listening – to ourselves, to each other, and to the gentle whispers of the living intelligences of the natural world.

If we can do that, we will build a contagious energy that will ultimately lead to real healing and restoration – the restoration of our wholeness, as a global community – of our deep and fundamental interdependence and Oneness with each other, other species and the whole interwoven web of creation.

~ Nina Simons
Nina Simons oneness

I long for the day when the statement,
"Our God is love, our race is human,
and our religion is Oneness,"
is more than the musings of my mind,
but is the creed of the heart of the human family.

~ R. Jim Rosemergy
R. Jim Rosemergy oneness

It may seem difficult to believe that a simple culture in the Himalaya has anything to teach our industrialized society. But our search for a future that works keeps spiraling back to an ancient connection between ourselves and the earth, an interconnectedness and Oneness that ancient cultures have never abandoned.

~ Helena Norberg-Hodge
Helena Norberg-Hodge oneness

When all things return to the One, even gold loses its value.
But when the One returns to all things, even the pebbles sparkle.

~ John Wu
John Wu oneness

. . And everything comes to One
As we dance on, dance on, dance on.

~ Theodore Roethke
Theodore Roethke oneness

The word integrity has two meanings. The first is "honesty. "We have to be honest in facing our limitations, in facing the sheer complexity of the world, honest in facing criticism even of things which are deeply precious to us. Integrity also means wholeness, Oneness, the desire for a single vision, the refusal to split our minds into separate compartments where incompatible ideas are not allowed to come into contact. An undivided mind looks in the end for an undivided truth, a Oneness at the heart of things. The whole quest for integrity presupposes that in the end we are all encountering a single reality and a single truth.

John Habtood Confessions Of A Conservative Liberal oneness

One with All

O, Blessed Peacemaker
You make your Home in our hearts
as Loving Companion Presence.
With unreserved, radical trust,
our path is made sure.
Bonded in Love, we become empowered
to serve with mercy and justice:
One with You…
One with All.
Blessed are You, O Life of our lives.

March 2007 (Vol. XX, No. 3)

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

Spring greetings, dear friends!May the March winds blow many blessings into your lives! LISTEN in the Silence to a new world Awakening. With so much negativity seeming to cover our Earth home, it's all too easy for us to become discouraged or apathetic. We may not notice millions of our sisters and brothers around the globe who are in harmony with our aspirations and intentions to "peace the world" together. Light workers are networking ... peace and prayer groups are extending love, forgiveness, and hope ... and, notwithstanding the myriad outward news in the media, signs of Awakening and movement toward a just and more viable life for all are growing. As we focus our spiritual eyes and ears on this, as we listen to our heart's inner Voice of Love, we are blessed, we are peace-keepers. For, Love speaks in the hearts of those who become silent in order to LISTEN.

The more faithfully you listen to the voice within you, the better you will hear what is sounding outside. And only those who listen can speak authentically.

~ Dag Hammarskjold
Dag Hammarskjold listen

A listening heart is always open, sensitive to the joy and pain of others, offering a space within itself for the other to enter. It gives each person what is so badly needed – an affirmation of their place in this world.

~ Eliszer Shore
Eliszer Shore listen

If we think we hear,
we no longer listen.
If we think we see,
we no longer look.
If we think we know,
we no longer search.

~ Anonymous
Anonymous listen

Twenty-five years of listening to stories of pain in individuals' lives have taught me many important lessons. Perhaps the most important is the art of listening. If I reduce the pain I hear to a static moment or try to freeze it with my understanding, then I interrupt a process which always has a deeper meaning embedded within it. Pain is a messenger, a strange winged visitor that asks us to pay attention and listen beyond our usual preoccupations and concerns.

~ from NAVIGATING THE TIDES OF CHANGE by David La Chapelle
David La Chapelle Navigating The Tides Of Change listen

Listen to old stones for information about survival. What a seashell has to say will surprise you. So, too, will words written on the wind. Listening to silence is hardest of all. You want to fill it up with conversation ... distractions ... noise. Resist the impulse. In silence, you can dream great dreams. You can discover your own music. Listening means hearing the voice within you. It never fails to tell you the truth, even if you don't want to hear it.

~ from DANCING MOONS by Nancy Wood
Nancy Wood Dancing Moons listen Buy on Amazon

Listening is a lost art that can be gracefully recovered
in silence and solitude.

~ Robert J. Wicks
Robert J. Wicks listen

With a quiet mind, a heart still and silent,
You will see the infinity of God
And the finity of self.
Humility will embrace you,
and you will fade into
that which is all that is.
Your words will be few; the silence great.
There is room then for

Ecclesiastes 5:12

~ THE WAY OF SOLOMON, translation
The Way Of Solomon listen

Listening creates holy silence.

~ Rachel Naomi Remen
Rachel Naomi Remen listen

We say we aren't listening to ourselves in the name of consideration for others. But this is a false premise because we can't really listen to others until we learn to listen, exquisitely listen, and TO ABIDE by our own heart.

Gail Sher One Continuous Mistake listen

Listening has to do with awareness. Hearing is easy; listening is difficult. Few of us recognize that listening is an ability and not an instinct. As such, it is an act that has to be learned. To listen is to be sensitive to reality. Good listeners live in the moment and pay attention to what is going on in the here-and-now ... a listening that is beyond words.

~ from THE ZEN TEACHINGS OF JESUS by Kenneth S. Leong
Kenneth S. Leong The Zen Teachings Of Jesus listen

You, neighbor God, when I disturb with heavy raps
your quiet during a lonely night,
it is because I rarely hear You breathe,
though know: You're in your room alone.
And while in need, there's no one there to bring
your groping hand a drink. But I
am listening. Just give me a sign.
I am close by.

~ from THE BOOK OF HOURS by Rainer Maria Rilke
Rainer Maria Rilke The Book Of Hours listen

If we really want to pray, we must first learn to listen,
for in the silence of the heart, God speaks.

~ T. S. Eliot
T. S. Eliot listen

Listening creates a holy silence. When you listen generously to people, they can hear truth in themselves, often for the first time. And in the silence of listening, you can know yourself in everyone. Eventually you may be able to hear, in everyone and beyond everyone, the Unseen singing softly to itself and you.

~ from KITCHEN TABLE WISDOM by Rachel Naomi Remen
Rachel Naomi Remen Kitchen Table Wisdom listen Buy on Amazon

Those who are learned love to talk about what they know; and as they know much, they talk much. Yet to hear God, they must LISTEN. The learned often make a storage room of their mind, where so much is stored that there is no room left for God to enter and dwell in it ... The learned like to argue for the sake of arguing. It becomes a game, and in the end they love the argument and miss the opportunity to hear God.

~ from THE JOYFUL BEGGAR by Louis de Wohl
Louis de Wohl The Joyful Beggar listen

Most people need to know that they have been heard. Listen to their body, their eyes, to the colors they are wearing. If you really want to hear someone, open your heart and listen to their soul.

~ from UNTIL TODAY! By Iyanla Vanzant
Iyanla Vanzant Until Today! listen

Whoever listens
questions their life.

~ Elie Wiesel
Elie Wiesel listen

As a young man just 25 years old, the reality that my father was dying gave me the strength to find silence again. I spent uncounted afternoons by his side talking and listening to pure sound, not noise. He told me to be my own man. He helped me recognize the noise so I could stop listening to it. His dying pushed it away and created a space where silence could bloom and thrive. And in that silence, perhaps for the first time since I was five, I heard the voice of my spirit. It told me what I value. It showed me my weaknesses, illuminated my strengths, and gave me the clarity to decide for myself how I ought to live.

I believe the noise of our world is killing people, stifling spirits, and limiting the potential of humanity ... I believe there is a person inside all of us that needs to be heard.

~ Andrew Flewelling
Andrew Flewelling listen

February 2007 (Vol. XX, No. 2)

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

Heartfelt warm blessings to you, dear friends of silence, dear friends of Love and Peace!

We are born to love; we are all One Love. To extend Love, we must express the Love we are. And the more we recognize and forgive all the hidden ego-fears that keep us seemingly separate and bound to the world's values, the more Love we are able to share with all. In the silence, we can question our values and ask of each one, "Is this an eternal value?"Extending universal, eternal values is Love and Peace in action.

Love in action is the answer to every problem in our lives and in this world. Love in action is the force that helped us make it to this place, and it's the truth that will set us free.

~ Susan Taylor
Susan Taylor love

There is a love that is at the core of creation, a love that is born of oneness and carries the sacred interrelationship of all life. This love is alive within the hearts of those who love the Source of all life; its music is the song of the soul and the hidden purpose of creation. There is a wonder in this love, as well as a terror and beauty. Its wonder and terror come from its unconstricted nature, its limitless freedom; its beauty is a reflection of the face of God.

~ From THE SIGNS OF GOD by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee
Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee The Signs Of God love Buy on Amazon

Nor can that endure
Which has not its foundations upon love,
For love alone diminishes not, but shines with its own light,
Makes an end of discord, softens the fires of hate,
Restores peace in the world,
Brings together the sundered, redresses wrong,
Aids all and injures none.
And who so invokes its aid will find peace and safety,
And have no fear of future ill.

~ Queen Jadwiga (Poland 1300 a. d. )
Queen Jadwiga love

"What is love, my friends?" he asked, opening his arms as though he wished to embrace us. "What is love? It is not simply compassion, not simply kindness. In compassion there are two: the one who suffers and the one who feels compassion. In kindness there are two: the one who gives and the one who receives. But in love there is only one; the two join, unite, become inseparable. The I and the you vanish. To love means to lose oneself in the beloved. "

~ from ST. FRANCIS by Nikos Kazantzakis
Nikos Kazantzakis St. Francis love Buy on Amazon

Each individual who conquers the panic of their nightmare, who faces up to the terror of evil, and thereby discovers a goodness which heals and cannot be destroyed, brings fresh love into the world. The deepening of their capacity for love will first heal their own wound, and then go further, extending its gentle influence upon family, friends, and out to the world.

John Mack Nightmares In Human Conflict love

Be silent.
Be still.
Your God only wants to
Look upon you
With love.
Quiet. Still be.
Let your God ... Love you.

~ Edwina Gately
Edwina Gately love

We are made for loving. If we don't love,
we will be like plants without water.

~ Desmond Tutu
Desmond Tutu love

Listen, my heart: love God ceaselessly
As the fish loveth water:
The deeper the water
The happier and more tranquil the fish.
God alone knoweth the suffering
Of fish separated from the waters.

~ Nanak, Sufi teacher
Sufi teacher, Nanak love

I want to know
if you are willing
to live, day by day,
with the consequence
of love.

~ David Whyte
David Whyte love

The state of love communion is simply the state of joining within with one another, heart to heart.It is an experience of the other as myself. When I meet you in my own heart, there is nowhere else I have to go. As long as we both remain in our hearts, our joining continues. When we move out of our hearts, we simply move away. And coming together does not mean reaching out after you, but reaching within myself to find the place where we are connected.

~ from THE CIRCLE OF ATONEMENT by Paul Ferrini
Paul Ferrini The Circle Of Atonement love

She loved Botswana, which was good place, and she loved those with whom she lived and worked. She had so much love to give – she had always felt that – and now there was someone to whom she could give this love, and that, she knew was good; for that is what redeems us, that is what makes our pain and sorrow bearable – this giving of love to others, this sharing of the heart.

~ from IN THE COMPANY OF CHEERFUL LADIES by Alexander McCall Smith
Alexander McCall Smith In Th Company Of Cheerful Ladies love

We are placed on this earth for a little space of
time to learn to bear the beams of Love.

~ William Blake
William Blake love

Each person who enters our life, every experience we have, is a teacher. Some things we learn amaze us, some trouble us. Everyone we have loved has become a part of us ... And no relationship created in love can ever die.

~ John E. Welshons
John E. Welshons love

Love is a verb: alive wherever it is lived.

~ Anonymous
Anonymous love

Blessing offers us a personal consciousness-raising practice, a spiritual adventure bringing sensitivity and gratitude into the foreground of our lives. While we all have moments when a blessing rises spontaneously to our lips, the path of blessing can become a way of life. Through the practice of blessing we develop an ever-deepening receptivity to the abundant love and joy flowing through creation. We learn to accept that love, absorb it into our souls, and offer it back to the Source with joy. In this way we come to feel the Presence of God move within us and through us.

~ from THE PATH OF BLESSING by Marcia Prager
Marcia Prager The Path Of Blessing love

January 2007 (Vol. XX, No. 1)

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

NEW YEAR BLESSINGS, dear friends!As we celebrate our twentieth year of Friends of Silence, years of growing together in the Silence, let us take time to be still and listen for the Voice of the Blessed Spirit ever there to accompany us on the journey into Love.
Stillness is formed in the Silence from within where our souls are nourished and renewed.Wisdom, too, is born in the inner being as our minds, senses, and bodies are stilled in the Silence. More than ever, our homes, schools, work places, and even houses of worship … indeed, all of society, need to include times for stillness so that harmony and balance can develop.Imagine: just one individual radiating stillness of the heart can affect the world beyond measure. Be still ... And discover a great revelation: stillness in the Silence!

Stillness is tranquility of the inner life, the quiet at the depths of its hidden stream. Stillness is a collected, total presence, a being all there, receptive, alert, ready.

~ Romano Guardini
Romano Guardini stillness

Stillness is not a technique, but rather a lifestyle which arises from a personal commitment to take up citizenship in the internal world and a willingness to pay attention to the age-old question, "Who am I?" The best tool we have to begin this inward journey is the breath. As we begin to reclaim our birthright of a deep, smooth, even, diaphragmatic breath, the physical feeling of stillness begins to touch both the body and mind. The more we embrace a lifestyle of stillness, the less time we spend being tossed by the wind.

~ From "Stillness and the Healing Process" by Ginger Cunes
Stillness And The Healing Process stillness

To concentrate without effort,
to transform work into play,
I must be still and hold
a zone of Silence in my soul.

~ Anonymous
Anonymous stillness

When we sit in stillness
we are profoundly active.

~ Gunilla Norris
Gunilla Norris stillness

The silence of the storm dominated everything. There are no words to describe a quiet so potent. I knew the snow was echoing a stillness that exists, hidden, in everything. I do not understand how I suddenly knew this, but the knowledge filled me. I saw that this stillness generates all life. And sitting there in the snow, I wept at the profound sound and power of that silence. It was hard to witness its beauty, knowing I'd lived many years never suspecting it was there.

~ from A NEW SET OF EYES by Paula D'Arcy
Paula D'Arcy A New Set Of Eyes stillness Buy on Amazon

To return back into ourselves, there are three things needed, for which you don't require a computer, television or radio: the first is a bit of stillness. Nothing can happen without a certain stillness. We also need silence. There is nothing so vocal and articulate as silence; all good language, all great words, are born of it. And the third thing we need is solitude. We need to acknowledge that solitude is an invitation to the soul to come alive. Solitude is utterly luminous if we lose our fears and begin to enter it more deeply.

~ from "Earth's Inner Light," an interview with John O'Donohue in "Earthlight" # 27
John O'Donohue Earthlight #27, Earth's Inner Light stillness

In stillness we add a grace and a benediction to our lives. For a short period, through a daily practice, we choose to create an interval where we are in communication with Spirit. In this holy stillness we find the deep peace we most need and want in our lives. To be still with the attention in the heart ... all other things are beside the point.

~ from A SACRED PRIMER by Elizabeth Harper
Elizabeth Harper A Sacred Primer stillness Buy on Amazon

My greatest wealth is the deep
in which I strive and grow
and win what the world cannot take
from me with fire or sword.

~ Goethe
Goethe stillness

I will be still, and let the earth
be still with me. And in that
stillness find the Peace of God,
that dwells within my heart.

A Course in Miracles stillness

... the silence in the mind
is when we live best, within
listening distance of the silence we call God ...
It is a presence, then,
whose margins are our margins;
that calls us out over our own fathoms.

What to do, but to draw a little nearer
to such ubiquity by remaining still?

~ from COLLECTED LATER POEMS by R. S. Thomas
R. S. Thomas Collected Later Poems stillness Buy on Amazon

Be still and empty
God shall fill you
with far greater fullness
than you could ever
wish or will.

~ Angelus Sileshis, with thanks to Ruth Shrader
Angelus Sileshis stillness

Everyday at dawn and often throughout the day, I go back to the quiet place where my inner Voice strengthens and infuses my speaking voice. Whether my work is with troubled teens who fight at my city's local high school or with rebels in the Philippines, I go to my inner Voice for refuge and support. If I hear, "Be still and know I am God," then, I know that I am centered and ready for partnership with the Spirit.

~ from A MANTLE OF ROSES by Virginia Swain
Virginia Swain Mantle Of Roses stillness Buy on Amazon

As long as the soul is not still there can be no vision, but when stillness has brought us into the presence of God, then another sort of silence, much more absolute, intervenes: the silence of a soul that is not only still and recollected but which is overawed in an act of worship by God's presence.

~ From LIVING PRAYER by M. Anthony Bloom
M. Anthony Bloom Living Prayer stillness Buy on Amazon

I saw Nuri sitting in meditation so motionless that not even one hair moved. I asked,
"From whom did you learn such deep meditation?"
"I learned it from a cat waiting by a mouse hole.
The cat was much stiller than I.

~ Shibli
Shibli stillness

To be still is to be alive in a whole new way.

~ Anonymous
Anonymous stillness

When you slow yourself down and emanate peaceful, tranquil thoughts, you actually send the anxiety and stress out of your life. Similarly, when you meditate you bring God's silent love into your present moments. In silence and stillness God's energy will become yours. By slowing your mind and other thoughts, you allow the fastest vibrations of spirit to enter. That faster vibration is one of harmony, love, and peace.

Wayne Dyer There's A Spiritual Soluition To Every Problem stillness

December 2006 (Vol. XIX, No. 11)

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

PEACE be with you, dear friends! And may the reality of Peace on Earth forall of humanity shine through the veils of illusion! To become the peace we yearn for is a double gift: we are blessed with an inner freedom that enlivens and energizes our souls . . . we, in turn, bless the Soul of the world in ways we cannot measure or imagine. As our thoughts, words, and actions reflect the peace of the great Peacemaker, we begin to build the Realm of Love here on Earth, our home.

Be not afraid. You are never alone. Listen in the Silence and know that Peace abides with and within you always. Peace! Peace! Peace!

Each of us can live a life of amazing power and peace and serenity ... if we really want to — a life in which our competing selves within are integrated. This happens through surrendering everything to attend to the Holy Within, the Voice, the Whisper, the Life in us all: steadfastly direct your mind and thought to peace throughout the day with your normal activities.

~ Stratford Caldecott
Stratford Caldecott peace

Learn to be quiet in the midst of turmoil,
for quietness is the end of strife and this
is the journey to peace.

ACIM peace

May harmony live
in the hearts of all people.
May peace be their way,
May we all be kind and gentle,
our paths straight and true.
May Star Beings show the way
and dark clouds never stay.
May life thrive upon the land,
and peace dwell in
the hearts of humankind.

~ Ten Bears
Ten Bears peace

The Way is everything. It's not a particular direction or a special way of doing something; it's a circle with no outside and no inside, just the pulsating of life everywhere. It excludes nothing. Therefore, as peacemakers working in the world, we exclude nothing. We'll pick and choose according to what's appropriate for us at a certain place and a certain moment. But we won't be attached to what we choose, for everything is the Way.

~ from BEARING WITNESS by Bernie Glassman
Bernie Glassman Bearing Witness peace Buy on Amazon

Sisters and brothers: We direct to your minds that peace is not merely the absence of war, but the constant effort to maintain harmonious existence between all peoples, from individual to individual, and between humans and the other beings of this planet. We point out to you that a spiritual consciousness is the path of survival of humankind.

~ from the Haudenosaunee Declaration, 1979
Haudenosaunee Declaration (1979) peace

A deep peace descended such as I had never felt before. My whole past, words, tears, everything sank into it. The only thing that remained was the here and now, transparent to light and to God... There was neither barrier nor distance between God and the world. Lying on the grass, I felt Love within me and I was filled with light, peace, and gratitude.

~ from PILGRIMAGE TO DZHVARI by Valeria Alfeyeva
Valeria Alfeyeva Pilgrimage To Dzhvari peace

Love is our shared truth.
Peace is our eternal hope.

~ Museum of World Religions, Taiwan
Museum Of World Religions (taiwan) peace

comes within human souls
when they realize their
relationship, their oneness,
with the universe
and all its powers,
and when they realize that
at the center of the universe
dwells the Great Creator
whose Center
is really everywhere
within each of us.

~ Black Elk
Black Elk peace

Peace is not absence of strife.
Peace is acceptance
and surrender to that which is.
Peace is the profound awareness of
the one true source
from which all things emerge . . .
and to which all things return.

~ from INVITING SILENCE by Gunilla Norris
Gunilla Norris Inviting Silence peace Buy on Amazon

Peace cannot be achieved through violence,
It can only be attained through understanding.

~ Emerson
Emerson peace

Ultimately we have just one moral duty: to reclaim large areas of peace in ourselves, more and more peace, and to reflect it toward others. And the more peace there is in us, the more peace there will be in our troubled world.

~ from AN INTERRUPTED LIFE by Etty Hillstrum
Etty Hillstrum An Interrupted Life peace Buy on Amazon

Those who have not found their true wealth, which is the radiant joy of Being and the deep unshakable peace that comes with it, are beggars, even if they have great material wealth. They are looking outside for scraps of pleasure or fulfillment, for validation, security, or love, when they have a Treasure within that not only includes all those things but is infinitely greater than anything the world can offer.

~ from THE POWER OF NOW by Eckhart Tolle
Eckhart Tolle The Power Of Now peace

We know more about war than we know about peace, more about killing than we know about living. We have grasped the mystery of the atom and rejected the sermon on the mount.

~ General Omar N. Bradley
General Omar N. Bradley peace

O Blessed Peacemaker, You invite us to return, to rest in You; for, in the Silence, we become strong; with utter trust, our way is made sure.

By the power of your Love, we pray: Enter our hearts to your Indwelling Presence. As we are still we come to know You.

Beloved of our hearts united with All, blessed are You,
O true Life of our lives: Lumen Christi . . . Holy Wisdom.

~ Nan Merrill
Nan Merrill peace

To protect our Planet:
practice Peace
promote Peace
become Peace.

~ Anonymous
Anonymous peace

Social change must start in our hearts: peace and prayer open our hearts. People who practice spiritual disciplines have the most enduring impact on life because the inward work we do makes us more effective in any situation. We are most effective when we can return good will for ill will and show kindness to those who would harm us; when we look for a common solution without anger or a desire for retaliation; and act on principles of care and concern without a need for reciprocation.

~ from OPEN MIND by Diane Mariechild
Diane Mariechild Open Mind peace

Sow Peace at home, scatter its fruits abroad.

~ Anonymous
Anonymous peace

O Blessed Peacemaker, You invite us to return

O Blessed Peacemaker, You invite us to return, to rest in You; for, in the Silence, we become strong; with utter trust, our way is made sure.

By the power of your Love, we pray: Enter our hearts to your Indwelling Presence. As we are still we come to know You.

Beloved of our hearts united with All, blessed are You,
O true Life of our lives: Lumen Christi . . . Holy Wisdom.

November 2006 (Vol. XIX, No. 10)

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

BLESSINGS OF THE SILENCE, dear friends! Silence is the deepest, clearest prayer we can offer our noisy, wounded planet today. Stilling the mind and basking in the silence of the heart is a healing balm for ourselves and radiates an active energy of peace out to the world. Our silence opens the door for creative potential to flourish and bloom and links us to the universe: a Oneness with which we come to appreciate. Be still and listen . . . Be open and know: Love and peace and understanding await us in the Silence along with blessings of the Mystery. Silent be and see!

 in spiritual nourishment gradually creates within us a permanent state of silence. The soul discovers in such silence unsuspected possibilities. It realizes that life can be lived at different levels. Daily silence experienced in humility and fervor as an indispensable exercise.

~ from GOD IN SILENCE by Pierce Lacout
Pierce Lacout God In Silence silence

When we make a place for silence, we make room for ourselves. By making room for silence, we resist the forces of the world which tell us to live an advertised life of surface appearances, instead of a discovered life — a life lived in contact with our senses, our feelings, our deepest thoughts and values.

~ from SHARING SILENCE by Gunilla Norris
Gunilla Norris Sharing Silence silence

At the heart of each of us,
whatever our imperfections,
there exists a silent pulse of perfect rhythm,
a complex form of wave forms and resonances,
which is absolutely individual and unique,
and yet which connects us
to everything in the universe.

~ George Leonard
George Leonard silence

I saw old Autumn in the misty morn
stand shadowless like silence, listening to silence.

~ Thomas Hood, 1799
Thomas Hood silence

We are familiar with the space in meditation and prayer where we sit in deep silence, attentive and awake, listening within the darkness. Yet we can also live in this state of deep receptivity, relying on what we hear inside our hearts in all aspects of our lives. This is what is needed of us now: to allow the divine to flow into the world and awaken us all within the oneness and joy of That which is at once both infinite within the silence of our own hearts, and visible in the sparkling moments of light and love that are creation.

~ from THE UNKNOWN SHE by Hillary Hart
Hillary Hart The Unknown She silence

I sit on the front porch of our cabin and "listen" to the complete silence. It's so quiet that when a bird flies past, I can hear the air passing beneath its wings. Gradually I become one with the silence and my heart opens to the joy of life. During the winter, when we don't live at the cabin, I visualize sitting on that porch as a way to "stop" the hustle and bustle of my day-to-day world.

~ Judy Barkley in "Spirituality and Health"
Judy Barkley Spirituality And Health silence

There is a tender sense of silence, without prayer to or from. In the moments of our own silence we are welcomed, as both stranger and friend. We need to allow this presence to be with us, not in defined moments, but as a flow. The river is here, not hidden behind the bank or crossing the horizon. In the tranquility of the moment there is no moment, nothing defined or captured. This world is seeped with the other, soaked with the dew of timelessness.

~ from THE SIGNS OF GOD by Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee
Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee The Signs Of God silence Buy on Amazon

Out of the oasis of silence can we drink deeply from our inner cup of wisdom.

~ Sue Patton Thoele
Sue Patton Thoele silence

Sometimes there would be a rush of noisy visitors and the silence of the monastery would be shattered. This would upset the monks; not the Master who seemed just as content with the noise as with the silence. To those protesting he said one day, "Silence is not the absence of sound, but the absence of self. "

~ Thanks to Robert Blakesly
Anonymous silence

God strikes in the silence through you all.

~ Elizabeth Browning
Elizabeth Browning silence

Golden lace.
sunrise pours slantwise
into clear water
through the blue spruce,
the deep tangle of pine
and purled woodsmoke.

I turned
and the earth hushed.
While I leaned into silence
a morning too vast to fathom
filled with light.

~ David Lee, from SO QUIETLY THE EARTH, thanks to Heron Dance
David Lee So Quietly The Earth, Heron Dance silence Buy on Amazon

I have long imagined that at some point in the process of creation there must have come a point of stillness and silence after all the chaotic churning and gurgling of lava and rain. In my visioning eye I see this first moment of silence, almost as if I had been there, and the spirit of the mist is there, hovering.

~ from THE MIST FILLED PATH, by Frank McEowen
The Mist Filled Path silence

Spiritual growth is achieved with passion, difficulty, and intensity as much as it is achieved by peace, silence, and love.

~ Carolyn Forche
Carolyn Forche silence

Our being is silent, but our existence is noisy. Yet when our noisy actions stop, there is a ground of silence always there. Contemplatives must be in contact with that ground and communicate from that level to keep silence alive for other people.

~ Thomas Merton, with thanks to Liz Stewart
Thomas Merton silence

In order to listen to God's silence we must escape the din of distractions that normally deafen us to it. Being deafened to the silence within as well as the silence without is corrosive to God-hearing. To be silent is to so empty oneself of the din of transitory distractions that one becomes fully receptive to the silence that always and everywhere underlies them. Silence is that state of spiritual sensitivity in which seekers make themselves available to the silence of God's voice.

by Kerry Walters Spirituality Of The Handmaid silence

Let us be silent, that we may hear the whisper of God.

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ralph Waldo Emerson silence

Under all speech that is good for anything, there lies a silence that is better.

~ Thomas Carlyle
Thomas Carlyle silence

One way of moving beyond words in meditative journaling is by becoming attentive to the silence before, beneath, and between our words, both as we write and as we read back to ourselves what we have written. This allows us to become more attentive to the silence into which our silence sometimes leads us. Where we feel our writing taking us into the Silence, we simply go there and allow ourselves to be in the Silence, "letting the words flow to silence... "As we become aware of something stirring in the silence, we record it, "letting the silence speak to the word..."

~ from SIMPLY SOUL STIRRING by Francis Dorff
Francis Dorff Simply Soul Stirring silence

October 2006 (Vol. XIX, No. 9)

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

HEARTFELT BLESSINGS, dear friends! As we spend time sitting and listening for the Voice of Silence, may we trust that our souls can plunge deeply into the inner well where truth dwells. There we may discover answers to our heart-concerns, our prayers, and insights to guide our way. May the harmony and balance of the elements, seasons, and music of the spheres ever be mirrored in our souls.

The soul of each one of us has its destination, and that is the Sacred Heart that draws us to Itself. What is true of each one of us is true of all the world. Walt Whitman in his strong, urgent way cries:

One thought ever at the face—
That in the Divine Ship, the world breasting time and space,
All peoples of the globe together sail, sail the same voyage,
Are bound to the same destination.

Some such thought as this is surely necessary for the bare subsistence of a soul, for our soul cannot live without the sense of a destination ... the destination of Divine Love.

~ from CHRIST THE COMPANION by Fr. Andrew
Fr. Andrew Christ The Companion soul Buy on Amazon

The soul possesses an ineffable intelligence that cannot be controlled. Like mist, the soul cannot be forced, directed, or squeezed into a box where it does not belong. It cannot even be fully seen or perceived, for the soul is a timeless, feathered thing that flies in more worlds than one.

~ from THE MIST-FILLED PATH by Frank MacEowen
Frank MacEowen The Mist-filled Path soul

Each of us possesses a soul, but we do not prize our soul as creatures made in the Divine image deserve, and so we do not understand the great secrets which they contain.

~ St. Teresa of Avila, 1577
St. Teresa of Avila soul

What exists between souls is love,
and that is all that exists.

~ Gary Zukav
Gary Zukav soul

Had I taken the fork of despair, I would have remained angry and depressed over the fire, missing a golden opportunity to move West, to be closer to my son. Looking back, I see that I was too attached to my old environment to make the move on my own. I needed the tragedy to push me onward. I don't mean to trivialize the difficulty of certain aspects of life. It is important to look for the larger picture. If we could see that everything, even tragedy, is a gift in disguise, we would then find the best way to nourish the soul . . . "Crises" can help us discover much about ourselves and enrich our lives.

~ from "Soul Gifts In Disguise" by Elizabeth Kubler-Ross in HANDBOOK OF THE SOUL
Elizabeth Kubler-Ross Soul Gifts In Disguise, Handbook Of The Soul

What would become of our souls if they lacked the bread of earthly reality to nourish them, the wine of created beauty to intoxicate them, the discipline of human struggle to make them strong? What puny powers and bloodless hearts Your creatures would bring to You were they to cut themselves off prematurely from the providential setting in which You placed them!

~ from HYMN OF THE UNIVERSE by Teillard de Chardin
Teilhard de Chardin Hymn Of The Universe soul Buy on Amazon

Educate your inner being in all aspects of life. Keep to the order you learned during your schooling. You did not begin all of a sudden to grasp the higher subjects; you started by learning the alphabet. The same applies to your soul. It is not good for it to strive toward exalted feats until it becomes familiar with the spiritual alphabet: humility and obedience. Let the whole of your life become a continuous prayer.

~ from ABBESS THAILIA: An Autobiography
Abbess Thailia Abbess Thailia: An Autobiography soul Buy on Amazon

Value your soul as priceless
for a cage without a bird has no value.

~ Sadi
Sadi soul

The soul seeks to serve; it inspires the personality to serve in particular ways and means. As that happens we become less and less interested in the personality aspect and more and more concerned in altruistic service for the benefit of all. The soul has no sense of being an individual, separate self and knows nothing of separation. It sees only the whole and itself in relation to the whole.

~ Benjamin Creme
Benjamin Creme soul

Dark and cold we may be, but this
Is no winter now: the frozen misery
Of centuries breaks, cracks, begins to move:
The thunder is the thundering of the floes,
The thaw, the flood, the upstart spring.
Thank God our time is now when wrong
Comes up to face us everywhere,
Never to leave us til we take
The longest stride of soul we ever took.
Affairs are now soul-size.
The enterprise
Is exploration into God.

~ from "A Sleep of Prisoners" in SELECTED PLAYS by Christopher Fry
Christopher Fry Selected Plays, A Sleep Of Prisoners soul

There are seasons in our souls: times of withering, times of coldness, times of renewal, times of sun and light. May the force which drives nature to its fulfillment be brought forth in us, too. Within each of us is the power to love and care awaiting our wills and our acts to bring it forth. Let us be instruments of the power oflove which comes through us but not from us, the power which waits for us to bring it forth.

~ from CYCLES OF REFLECTION by Robert E. Senghas, thanks to Pat Habif
Robert E. Senghas Cycles Of Reflection soul

This is essentially the argument for the soul: it holds reality together, it is my offscreen director, my presiding intelligence. I can think, talk, work, love, and dream, all because of the soul, yet the soul doesn't do any of these things. It is me... Everything that makes the difference between life and death must cross into this world via the soul... Soul is a connection between the world of the five senses and a world of inconceivable things like eternity, infinity, omniscience, grace, and every other quality unmanifest.

~ from HOW TO KNOW GOD by Deepak Chopra
Deepak Chopra How To Know God soul

Like billowing clouds,
like the incessant gurgle of the brook,
the longing of the soul can never be stilled.

~ Hildegard of Bingen
Hildegard of Bingen soul

The soul knows only the soul; the web of events is the flowing robe in which she is clothed.

~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Ralph Waldo Emerson soul

The contemplation of Eternity maketh the Soul immortal.

~ Thomas Traherne
Thomas Traherne soul

The love of God, unutterable and perfect
flows into a pure soul the way that light
rushes into a transparent object.
The more love that it finds, the more it gives
itself; so that, as we grow clear and open,
the more complete the joy of loving is.
And the more souls who resonate together,
the greater the intensity of their love,
for, mirror-like, each soul reflects the others.

~ Dante Alighieri
Dante Alighieri soul

September 2006 (Vol. XIX, No. 8)

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

MAY BLESSINGS ABOUND, dear friends, in work, leisure, learning, sharing . . . as we move into the Autumn season. When we offer ourselves in service to humanity as co-creators with Love, all that we need in all aspects of life will emerge to assist in the inner and the outer work. May we ever be guided in all we do by the Voice heard in the Silence — Holy Wisdom.

Think of your work not as a place to make a living, but as an opportunity to make a life. Think of yourself as a channel through which creative activities flow.

~ from SPIRITUAL ECONOMICS, by Eric Butterworth
Eric Butterworth Spiritual Economics work

Douglas Steere writes in WORK AND CONTEMPLATION of occasional moments of transcendence, as "ripples of ecstasy, when our deepest creative impulse, our spring of freedom, is drawn upon and released . . . And in such moments of utter self-absorption, we are lifted above both pain and pleasure. "These moments move us beyond the ordinary labors of our lives. They often occur when we have been in the company of strangers. They require time, and they invite Love.

~ from ATHENA'S DISGUISES by Susan Ford Wiltshire
Susan Ford Wiltshire Athena's Disguises work Buy on Amazon

The purpose of this world is not to have and hold, but to give and serve.

~ Wilfred T. Grenfell
Wilfred T. Grenfell work

I was invited to a barn raising near Wooster, Ohio. A tornado had leveled 4 barns and acres of prime Amish timber. In just three weeks the downed trees were sawn into girders, posts and beams and the 4 barns rebuilt and filled with livestock donated by neighbors to replace those killed in the storm. I watched the raising of the last barn in open-mouthed awe. Some 400 Amish men and boys, acting and reacting like a hive of bees in absolute harmony of cooperation, started at sunrise with only a foundation and floor and by noon, BY NOON, had the huge edifice far enough along that you could put hay in it -- a vast work, born of the spirit.

~ Gene Logsdon in AMISH ROOTS by John A. Hostetler
John A. Hostetler, Gene Logsdon Amish Roots work

Each person, no matter how old, has an important work to do. This good work not only accomplishes something needed in the world, but completes something in us. The work we do in the world, when it is true vocation, always corresponds in some mysterious way to the work that goes on within us.

~ Elizabeth O'Connor
Elizabeth O'Connor work

For me, the question is whether my encounter with death has freed me enough from the addictions of the world that I can be true to my Work as I now see it "sent" from above. It clearly involves a call to prayer, contemplation, silence, solitude, and inner detachment. I have to keep choosing my "not belonging" in order to belong, my not being from below in order to be from above. For, the taste of God's unconditional love quickly disappears when the addictive powers of everyday existence make their presence felt again.

~ from BEYOND THE MIRROR by Henry T. Nouwen
Henri Nouwen Beyond The Mirror work Buy on Amazon

Be a gardner.
Dig a ditch,
toil and sweat
and turn the earth upside down
and seek deepness
and water the plants in time.
Continue this labor
and make sweet floods to run
and noble and abundant fruits
to spring.
Take this food and drink
and carry it to God
as your worship.

~ Julian of Norwich
Julian of Norwich work

The wise work diligently without allegiance to words.
They teach by doing, not by saying;
they are genuinely helpful,
not discriminating,
positive, not possessive.
They do not proclaim their accomplishments,
and because they do not proclaim them,
credit for them can never be taken away.

~ Tao Te Ching
Tao Te Ching work

A person's life purpose is nothing more than to rediscover, through detours or art, or love, or passionate work, those one or two images in the presence of which that person's heart first opened.

~ Albert Camus
Albert Camus work

Twenty years ago, when I was near death from a life-threatening illness, a vivid dream was more real than life. Floating out of my body, I rose up, up, and up inside the clouds above. With no door visible, I nevertheless knocked, repeatedly demanding entry. The sky whitened with my greeting as a Large Voice stated, "You have got a lot of work to do. "It sent me down, down back into my body with the life-long question: What is my Work? Is my present action leading to my Work?

~ Rosie Rosenzweig
Rosie Rosenzweig work

If we just worry about the big picture, we are powerless. So my secret is to start right away doing whatever little work I can do. I try to give joy to one person in the morning, and remove the suffering of one person in the afternoon. If you and your friends do not despise the small work, a million people will remove a lot of suffering.

~ S. Chan Khong , thanks to Liz Stewart
S. Chan Khong work

In order to continually re-imagine ourselves through our work lives, we must have a part of us that belongs to something beyond the status quo. Something over the horizon or, paradoxically, beneath us, in the ground of our life. Something as yet hidden, yet to be brought to light. Something which is governed by other laws than the ones we so assiduously obey every day. Something to do with the laws that govern the way we belong to this stubborn and beautiful world.

~ from CROSSING THE UNKNOWN SEA by David Whyte
David Whyte Crossing The Unknown Sea work Buy on Amazon

All work is empty save when there is love.

~ Kahlil Gibran
Kahlil Gibran work

As we enable others to work
with meaning, mutual
fulfillment becomes a
building block to peace
and smiles become contagious.

We are asking,
May Work with Meaning
flourish on Earth.

~ from PEACE PLANET: Prayers for Our World by Nan Merrill
Nan Merrill Peace Planet work