“The LORD is in His holy temple; let all the earth keep silence before Him.” Habakkuk 2:20 (BCP)
I cannot begin to describe the importance that silence has taken on in my life. My first experience with intentional silence came from solo hiking trips in the Sipsey Wilderness located in the Bankhead National Forest near Haleyville. Although I fail to take regular days off from my hyper activity often enough, Sandra and I have been able to take an annual extended silent retreat each year for the past decade or so. We choose the Abbey of Gethsemani monastery near Bardstown, KY as the location for our retreat.
We usually try to go in the Spring and if we catch the season at the right time the grounds and surrounding forests are bursting with the new life of blossoms and greenery.
I came across this article from 2012 on an Episcopal monastery in Cambridge. I do not know anything else about this monastery, but the fact that they understand and encourage silence in today’s over stimulated culture is reassuring. When it comes to seeking to better understand and practice the spiritual disciplines, I am able to look past many differences of doctrine and other values.
I am usually able to spend at least a few minutes each morning enjoying the quiet at our church before diving into the business of the day. And since my car radio does not have an antenna I have learned to enjoy the quiet of my drive time. Each of these daily activities has helped to lessen the distraction and noise in my life. May you seriously consider how you can reduce the noise in your life and seek out places and practices that enable you to better hear the voice of the One who alone is able to bring calm and peace into your life.