The Call of Retreat: Silence (the Abbess is away until August 25th)

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This week I follow the call to sink into the silence and stillness. Solitude calls my name and shows me my reflection as a sacred offering.  In this place the forest will ask me to embrace my truth once again. The hummingbird will invite me to sip holy nectar, the egret to stretch out my wings, the sparrows to remember my flock.

Each pine cone contains an epiphany, each smooth stone offers a revelation. I will watch and witness as the sun slowly makes her long arc across the sky and discover my own rising and falling. The moon will sing of quiet miracles – like those which reveal and conceal the world every day right before our eyes.

I am craving a wide sea of wordless moments. I want to become a disciple of silence and hear in that shimmering soundlessness the voice of the one who whispers in stillness, whose singing vibrates in stones, who out of the silence calls forth a radical commitment of which I do not yet know the shape.

This is the call of the monk: to remember again and again the treasures that silence can offer so that the One from whom we emerge and to whom we return can shower us with blessings, so that we might remember who we truly are.

As the leader of a spiritual community, my commitment to my own spiritual practice is one of the most important aspects of my work.  As someone in the midst of a profound threshold, I welcome the chance to pause and linger in this space, to reflect on what it is that is ushering me across.

I bring a hope to return to the start of fall teaching with more clarity, vision, nourishment, and groundedness.  I bring a deep desire to simply listen. I open myself to the grace and gift of this time.  If you are the praying kind, dear monks, I welcome a small prayer or blessing for my time away.

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