I, who live by words, am wordless when I try my words in prayer

I, who live by words, am wordless when
I try my words in prayer. All language turns
To silence. Prayer will take my words and then
Reveal their emptiness. The stilled voice learns
To hold its peace, to listen with the heart --
to silence that is joy, is adoration.
The self is shattered, all words torn apart
In this strange patterned time of contemplation
That, in time, breaks time, breaks words, breaks me,
And then, in silence, leaves me healed and mended.
I leave, returned to language, for I see
Through words, even when all words are ended.
I, who live by words, am wordless when
I turn me to the Word to pray. Amen.

~ Madeleine L'Engle

The choice of conscious transformation

Only through responsible choice can you choose consciously to cultivate and nourish the needs of your soul, to challenge and release the wants of your personality. This is the choice of clarity and wisdom, the choice of conscious transformation. It is the choice of the higher-frequency energy currents of love, forgiveness and compassion. It is the choice to follow the voice of your higher self, your soul. It is the decision to open yourself to the guidance and assistance of Love. It is the path that leads consciously to authentic power.

~ from THE SEAT OF THE SOUL by Gary Zukav

The worship of the Great Mystery was silent

The worship of the Great Mystery was silent, solitary, free from all self-seeking. It was silent because all speech is of necessity feeble and imperfect ... it was solitary, because the people believed that the Great Spirit is nearer to us in solitude, and that no one was authorized to come between an individual and the Creator. Among us, all were conscious of their divinity.

~ Ohiyesa, Santee Sioux thanks to Elaine Simard

Times of silence and solitude

If one saw a person who was always loving, but not easygoing; utterly kind, but not to the point of creating dependency; very wise, and clearly able to intuit the future; never condemning, yet always understanding; willing to descend into the mire of human conditions to help someone rise out of it; prepared to share anything they had with another; utterly firm when necessary for the soul's sake; one might say, "S/he is the most Christ-like person I have ever met". But one still would not know the inner status of that person. The most important discoveries we make are not on the level of intellect at all. They are inward knowledge of absolute certitude; this is the result of a grace bestowed when the recipient is inwardly ready to see ... and often arises out of times of silence and solitude.

~ from THE SPIRITUAL PATH by Raynor C. Johnson

The empty spaces needed for nurturing the soul

We need interaction with others, and we need activities. We have many gifts to offer those who cross our paths, and we need the many gifts they have to offer us. But we soon have little to share, to give to others, if we neglect the special themes, the empty spaces needed for nurturing the soul. Some time away from people, activities and things, some time away to commune with God, to seek guidance, to seek security in the fullest sense, will prepare us to better give our gifts to others. That time alone will also ready us to accept others' gifts to us.

~ from EACH DAY A NEW BEGINNING by Karen Casey

October 1992 (Vol. V, No. 9)

AUTUMN GREETINGS! Now is the time of the harvest. As the trees burst forth in glory, as the earth yields the fruits of spring promise and summer growth, we are reminded to reflect on the changes that occur in our lives in due season. Wise are those who, like Meister Eckhart, acknowledge and reverence the need for silence and solitude. For,

May the thoughts we think be pure

May the thoughts we think be pure,
May the words we speak be kind,
May God's love in our hearts be shown and shared
In the daily service of our lives.

~ Neta Kaye Stokely

Old traditions used to say that wisdom consists in the knowledge of the Word

Old traditions used to say that wisdom consists in the knowledge of the Word. Give us this wisdom to be able to listen, to accept, to receive, to practice the hospitality of the words, paying attention, reacting consequently, being struck, touched, or caressed by the words that come to us. And let us also learn, in turn, to speak the right words, to affirm people who speak in a life-giving way, to recreate ourselves with our own words, because each of them sprouts from the same dynamism from which the plants grow, life unfolds, the universe comes into being. The word is word when it has a speaker, when it speaks about something; the word is word when it speaks with something. Give us, O Creator of Life, this depth, this awareness, and this tremendous joy to discover in ourselves that creative power that we can speak, emit, and receive living words, words of eternal life, words that come of the peace, of the silence, of the transparency of everything.

~ from BLESSED SIMPLICITY by Raimundo Panikkar


Love: a basket of bread from which to eat for years to come; good loaves, fragrant and warm, miraculously multiplied: the basked never empty, the bread never stale.

~ Unknown

Even one minute spent in unaccustomed prayer

At first, even one minute spent in unaccustomed prayer will seem as endless as an empty silence or a blank stillness; but these periods of quiet can be lengthened profitably, and these times of silent stillness can become alive, eventually becoming the most rewarding experiences of the day, as one discovers how much God has to say to those who will listen. "In quietness and in confidence shall be your strength." A person who does not understand another's silences will not understand their words either.

~ from INSPIRATION FOR LIVING by Paul S. McElroy
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