Without silence

Without silence, the inward stillness in which God educates and molds us is impossible!
~ Evelyn Underhill

The chasm between being alone and loneliness is deep

The chasm between being alone and loneliness is deep. The way you begin to be alone and at peace without being lonely is to know that you are with your best friend. When you are at peace with yourself and love yourself, you can never be lonely. Only when you learn to love yourself, can you love another. You must find that love for yourself before you can touch the purity of aloneness. Love of self, without being selfish, will not allow loneliness to exist. Love of self also creates a love for everything else and brings us closer to the Sacred Oneness.

~ from GRANDFATHER by Tom Brown, Jr.

I surround myself with silence

I surround myself with silence. The silence is within me, permeates my house, reaches beyond the surfaces of the outer walls and into the bordering woods. It is one silence, continuous from within me, outward in all directions: above, beneath, forward, rearward, sideward. In the silence I listen, I watch, I sense, I attend, I observe. I require this silence. I search it out. The finely drawn treble song of a white-throated sparrow is part of it. Invasions of it by the noise of engines are a torment to me. This is my solitude.

~ from THE STATIONS OF SOLITUDE by Alice Koller

Where sacred silence sings

Winter mysteries whispered into invisible doorways
to holy blackness,
They silently fled over white landscapes
Like a dancing child cloud drifting with music.

Poetry awakened while snowflakes played in the
fearful twilight,
White notes striking the deepening silence graced all,
Yet dead ears forgot the path to song.

Now, light and dark embrace in our homeland
Where sacred silence sings ...

~ Richard Bachtold

January 1994 (Vol. VII, No. 1)

Greetings and blessings, friends! May PEACE BE WITH YOU in this season of quiet dormancy, this season of awaiting new growth in a new year. For, as we:

In secret, silent, still

Quiet the trees; quiet the creepers all.
In the sky's tranquil lap burns the sun's ray.
In my heart's temple doth the silence fall,
Worshipping Thee, Thou, Silent Majestic. Thou
Replenishest this tranquil heart. O Thou
Eternal, Absolute, with silence fill
Me and with song, in secret, silent, still.

~ C.R. Das

Let us, then, labor for an inward stillness

Let us, then, labor for an inward stillness, --
And inward stillness and an inward healing;
That perfect silence where the lips and heart
Are still, and we no longer entertain
Our own imperfect thoughts and vain opinions,
But God alone speaks in us, and we wait
In singleness of heart, that we may know
God's will, and in the silence of our spirits,
That we may do God's will, and do that only!

~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

If we still ourselves, we can mirror the divine

If we still ourselves, we can mirror the divine. But if we engage solely in the frenetic activities of our daily involvements, if we seek to impose our own schemes on the natural order, and if we allow ourselves to become turbulent ... There is no effort that we can make to still ourselves. True stillness comes naturally from moments of solitude where we allow our minds to settle. Just as water seeks its own level, the mind with gravitate toward the holy. Muddy water will become clear if allowed to stand undisturbed, and so too will the mind become clear if it is allowed to be still.

~ from 365 Tao by Deng Ming-Dao with thanks to Anne Strader

I had decided to marry the silent forest

One might say, I had decided to marry the silent forest. The sweet dark warmth of the whole world will have to be my wife. Out of the heart of that dark warmth comes the secret that is heard only in silence, but it is the root of all the secrets that are whispered by all the lovers in their beds all over the world. So perhaps I have an obligation to preserve the stillness, the silence, the poverty, the virginal point of pure nothingness which is at the center point of all other loves. I attempt to cultivate this plant without comment in the middle of the night and water it with psalms and prophecies in silence. It becomes the most rare of all the trees in the garden, at once the primordial paradise tree, the axis mundi, the cosmic axle, and the Cross.

~ from A THOMAS MERTON READER by Thomas McDonnell
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