Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Give us today our daily silence

On a cold winter's day I stopped at Friend's House Euston, the spiritual home and administrative centre of the Religious Society of Friends near Euston Statation in London.  Hot and wholesome organic soup and excellent fair Trade Coffee sustained the body and soothed the spirit after navigating the London Underground a skill that after 20 years in another country does not return easily. Later I sat in the beautiful Meeting Room next to the bookshop, a place of luminous silence.  This was a circular, windowless space with simple wooden benches but drew one deeply into a silent space and to the heartbeat of an awareness of the Inner Light of Christ. I was fascinated to note that each day there is a ten minute Meeting for Worship for city workers, visitors and travellers. I had never come across such a brief meeting but the Spirit works in all times and spaces. Yet there was another grace, the opportunity to buy a copy of Pierre Lacout's 'God is Silence' which I read early during my sojourn with Friends.

This for me is an amazing and trans formative booklet, beautifully written by a Swiss former Carmelite Priest who later became a Friend. he died a few years ago. It has been long out of print but now is available again at the London Quaker books for just a few pounds sterling. For any philosopher of silence and for a Christian drawn to the mystery of silence this is a wonderful gift. God is silence and we pray, 'Give us this day, our daily silence'

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