We live in an increasingly noisy world. God dwells in the depths of the Silence. Noise crowds God out. He seems distant in the clamor and clang of our technological age where you have to watch carefully when you are out for a walk lest the talkers and texters crash into you. Sometimes I am sure I can hear God shouting from the silence, "Turn off the damn machines!"
There are two necessary expressions of silence.
- The first is to simply incorporate more silence into our lives.
- The second is to spend moments that become minutes in intentional silence before God in the place of Contemplative Prayer.
Each comes with its challenges; each brings its benefits that far outweigh those challenges. Everything good in life comes with a price but few things that do bring as great a blessing as spending days in quiet and minutes in Silent Contemplative Prayer.
Living More Quietly
It is a good thing to not make excessive noise. Learning to live more quietly means to speak rather than shout, to listen more and to speak less. It means being less noisy in our environment. Learn to shut doors and drawers gently.
Cultivate an atmosphere
Give your brain some quiet
within which to think!
Turn off the background noise. Turn off the radio, the stereo, and the television unless you are actually listening or watching. Do not contribute to the noise that pollutes our homes and our world. Cultivate an atmosphere of quiet. Give your brain some quiet within which to think!
Tread softly. Learn to move with quietness and grace. It will allow you to come and go unnoticed, with fewer disturbances to yourself or others.
When I do listen to something on my computer, or to my TV, I do so with ear buds. There is no need for me to impose my noise on those around me. And there is no need to leave a noise imprint on my environment. The very walls of our homes are affected and altered by the noises we make and allow; the spiritual environment even more so.
Silence Before God
I do not sit in silence before God looking to hear His Voice, see a vision or receive anything of note. But quite often when I sit in silence I do hear His Voice. I sometimes see a vision. I receive something of note. But that is not why I go there. I go there to simply spend time with God. I go there pushing aside demands of the day, the noise of the world, the influence of other people and the interests of my ego to be present to Him, as He is present to me. I simply want to be with God.