Silence is Within

Laity Lodge

You have felt it perhaps. The silence after love, as you trace your Beloved. Or the silence of holding your child at some moment of discovery. You have felt the silence of a river and its silvery fish. Or maybe you have closed your eyes while on a subway and let the squeal of the turns and the clattering rocking become part of a silent symphony inside you.

Sometimes, in the face of irritating sounds, I play this game with my children: what is its beat, its quality, and can we meet it with a movement or song of our own that synchronizes, incorporates, joins?

Reading about Silence in chapter 3 of A Sunlit Absence, I did not understand (such mysterious language at times, such reasoning that assumes you are already in the circle of understanding).

Yet, by the end of the chapter, I felt I understood this: "Silence resounds in all sound." I don't know that I understood it in the way the author meant it, but it occurred to me that he was speaking of Silence as if it were a Presence itself.

And if Silence is a presence, it is something to be met and either shunned or welcomed. It is the moment after love, it is the holding, it is the river winding, it is the squeal and the clattering of metal-on-metal we can fold into a song. It is a quality we ourselves bring to our encounters, or it is the recognition of the Divine in everything—and here I am thinking of a verse the author quoted in a previous chapter, "In Him we live and move and have our being" or I am thinking of David's words, "like a weaned child is my soul within me."


The author also seems to be saying that outer Silence can cultivate inner silence. In this chapter, he mentions the value of Retreat. That is why I love this place. Especially the silent nights under a sky full of more stars than you've probably seen in all your life.

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Blogger Megan Willome said...

I see Blue Hole!


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