I stand among you as one who offers a small message of hope, that first, there are always people who dare to seek on the margin of society, who are not dependent on social acceptance, not dependent on social routine, … Continue reading →
The true contemplative is
not one who prepares his mind
for a particular message that he
wants or expects to hear,
but is one who remains empty
because he knows that he can never
expect to anticipate the words
that will transform his
darkness into light.
He does not demand
light instead of darkness.
He waits on the Word of God
and when he is “answered,”
it is not so much by a word
that burst into his silence.
It is by his silence itself,
revealing itself to him as
a word of great power,
full of the voice of God.
Thomas Merton from Dialogues with Silence
Source: Parabola Fall 2004 page 71
As my prayer become more attentive and inward
I had less and less to say.
I finally became completely silent.
I started to listen
– which is even further removed from speaking.
I first thought that praying entailed speaking.
I then learnt that praying is hearing,
not merely being silent.
This is how it is.
To pray does not mean to listen to oneself speaking,
Prayer involves becoming silent,
And being silent,
And waiting until God is heard.
–Søren Kierkegaard, quoted by Joachim Berendt in “The Third Ear,” translated by Tim Nevill (Shaftsbury, England: Element Books, 1988).