Even as a child, I was drawn by silence, though I didn't know it then. I loved the solitude of reading better than any other activity, and for as long as I remember. When we began to
move into the woods for the whole of summer holidays, a new silence attracted me: that of the trees and the ponds and the early mornings when no one else was up.
I look back now
and easily trace my attraction to Silence. It played a role in drawing me into religious life at the age of 17, when there were significant and long periods of silence every day in those early years. I loved it - even silent meals. Twice in my life - at 22
and 45 - I entered into the steady silence of the 30-day Ignatian retreat, and without any difficulty at all; in fact, another loving engagement with silence.
Now I am on
the downslide of the arc of my life, and after decades of intense outer engagement, activity and travel, I am being slowly drawn back to silence, though this time more deeply, more intensely. I became conscious of it several years ago when I first read Robert
Sardello's book called Silence, which I have now read four times, each time bringing me deeper. And a new author (to me), Maggie Ross, an Anglican Solitary in the UK is plunging me into greater depths with her
book Silence: a User's Guide.
As I write on this second day of 2017, I am aware of a different manifestation of this inner drawing.
I am "unsuscribing" from most of the websites that have given me spiritual food for many years. I have rearranged my reading/writing/contemplative time so that it receives the best energy of my day. I am following an attraction to more emptiness than fullness;
more inner receptivity than activity, more presence than doing.
So on this website I have created another page called "Silence." I will be posting quotes and insights of
my experience of silence. I/we are at a time in our history when overwhelm is dominant; when fear and anxiety dominate the news and therefore our days. Entering Silence is more important than it ever was. Listening is more important than speaking.
Being present in the heart more important than doing with the head and hands.
This attraction to silence has been intensifying for about three years, ever
since I took a sabbatical year for nothing but listening, reading, writing and being in the forest. A slow intensifying attraction has been growing in me since that time, and I am following it now, in my seventieth year, which is becoming more of
a time of inner fulfillment than I ever imagined.