We are all a hermit

An insight made available to us by the hermit's life is that we are all, each one of us, a hermit; that in the end we know we are a unique creation of God, and alone because of that uniqueness, and that this alone-ness become solitude is the meeting place with God. This is true no matter how social and communal our exterior lives may be. It is within our interior solitude, the solitude and silence that many of us (including hermits) try to shut out with noise and activity of various sorts in order to evade that encounter, that we are called into truth and confrontation with mercy, that we are given what it is we have to give in our encounters with other people who in their own lives are engaged in the same searching.

Just as each new seed requires a period of gestation

Just as each new seed requires a period of gestation -- a time of deep silence and solitude -- so, too, we need such seasons. "Someone wrote me recently and asked if it wasn't frustrating to have exterior solitude interrupted. Well, you learn to live out of your interior solitude. And perhaps this is one of the keys to living in the madness, the telescoping demands and resulting exhaustion of our society: to explore our own interior solitude and learn not only to be afraid of it but to live out if its self-discipline, its limitless resources and deep silence. Solitude is like a tea ceremony, the celebration of life in all its homely movements taken out of time -- the wonder of the commonplace, the mystery of ordinary life ... Solitude is being poured-out-through. We evolve toward simplicity. We dwell in the Word."