Beverly Lanzetta, Radical Wisdom: A Feminist Mystical Theology (Fortress Press, 2005), 169.
Image: Arun Anoop, Kerala, India, unsplash.com/@arunanoop
'Solitude is solace; silence is food. They are necessary for the nourishment of the whole person, and for the actualization of the deepest possibility of a spiritual life. To live at the centre of one’s being requires practicing life in our inner monastery where we are undisturbed by the noise, demands, and busyness of the world. Silence allows no other speech to enter the enclosure where God and self are one. It washes away the harsh, violated, lashing speech that humiliates and shames. Silence is a balm that soothes whatever has falsely named and blamed … it flows out of an untarnished beauty into the beauty of every … face and presence. … Silence recharges and restores the powerful yet fragile awareness of life’s radical awe. It is the electrical current that ignites the divine spark at the centre of our being.
Solitude is more than a withdrawal from other people, just as silence is more than the absence of speech. It is an interior state of consciousness in which [we] protect and preserve the integrity of self from unwanted intrusion. Far from being escape from the world, solitude establishes [us] in the world in a new way. It provides an inner resiliency and power that grows form the core of [our] self-integrity. … Solitude provides the freedom to stand alone and not to succumb to the crowd.'
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