Tag Archives: silence

Exercise 62: Being held by Silence

Background: This is a modified version of a practice which appears in Richard Rohr’s Just This.  

Their is much of value in the first several steps of this practice.  It might be that you are ready to work through to steps 9-11.  However, don’t rush into it.  It might take weeks, months, or even years.   The first 8 steps are quite a powerful practice on their own.

The Practice:

  1.  Place your feet flat on the floor.
  2. Inhale.  Exhale.
  3.  Rest in the Silence.
  4. When you are ready, feel embraced by her.  Let the Silence flow over you.
  5. As sounds or distracting thoughts threaten to disrupt your practice, realize that the silence still exists, beneath the distractions.  Look for the silence beneath these things which rise up.  All that happens comes out of silence and will sink back into it.
  6. Inhale Silence.
  7. Exhale Silence.
  8. Continue to be embraced by it.
  9. At some point, you may just be ready to shift your vantage point.  This step is the optional one:  Shift the seat from which you see the world.  It began in the head, with thinking.  Feel this vantage point move down the physicality of your body.  Let yourself reside in the heart, now.  See the world from this place.
  10. Continue to dwell in the silence and bring it in.
  11. You will know that you are authentically occupying the heart space when you experience a clear vastness.
  12. When you are ready, release this practice.  Sit in a time of wordless wonder.

Exercise #21: Listening to God Listen to Me

Background: Have you known — or even been –. So utterly in love that you would like to be on the phone with a person even if you had nothing to say?  There is something immature about that kind of giddiness, perhaps. But there is something wonderful, too. Consider it, just knowing that there is a line open between you and your love, even if you are not saying anything to them: sometimes this is enough.

I am not sure that Mother Theresa’s gravitas, saintliness, and devoted life often engenders comparisons to infatuated teenagers.  But I believe here, the comparison is valid.

Mother Theresa was once asked about her prayer life.  She explained that often, she listens to God. When asked what God is saying, she responded that God often said nothing: that she simply listens to God listening to her.

The Exercise

  1.  Speak to God for a while.  You might wish to use one of the prayer/spiritual journaling prompts.
  2. When you are done speaking, be still.  Listen for what God says in return.
  3. When God is done speaking (if God begins) be still.
  4. Experience yourself listening to God listen to you.  Allow yourself to grow closer.