Monday, October 10, 2011

A Thought

Of Silence
“Let us do what the Prophet saith: "I said, I will take heed of my ways, that I sin not with my tongue: I have set a guard to my mouth, I was dumb, and was humbled, and kept silence even from good things" (Ps 38[39]:2-3). Here the prophet showeth that, if at times we ought to refrain from useful speech for the sake of silence, how much more ought we to abstain from evil words on account of the punishment due to sin.”

This is a piece of chapter 6 of “The Rule of St. Benedict”, written some 1500 years ago and still very much in use today as a means of regulating (for lack of a better word) behavior and conduct while living in such a community as a monastery. However, looking further at the Rule might reveal more than we are likely comfortable with. It is a strong discipline that requires much of those living in such a community, but is there less required of us who also live within a faith community? Like monks, are we not of one heart and one mind as it pertains to the Lord Himself?

This is not the vow of silence most of us believe monks live under. Rather it is a discipline to be more inclined to hear and to listen than to talk, for it is in silence and stillness when we can truly hear what our Lord has to say.

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