Inner Silence

In this reflection from the International School of the Golden Rosycross,

as a counterbalance to our busy everyday lives

we would like to be inspired by inner silence

 

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The Rosicrucians have a prayer that begins as follows:

 

Descend to the Silence, O Sons of the Fire.

Come in to the Peace, now, in this hour.

A wonderful mildness will then fill your heart.

A sovereign grace will banish what smarts.

                                                            (Rosa Mystica 54)

 

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The value of silence is being re-evaluated,

right in the midst of our dynamic modern lives.

This re-evaluation is perhaps due to the influence of various philosophies,

many of them Oriental philosophies in which meditation and silence

are essential aspects of spiritual experience.

And silence has always been fundamental in Western mysticism.

 

Human beings are longing for outer silence,
as well as for inner silence.

 

Outer silence is the absence of sound.

The longing for outer silence originates in the I-personality.

 

The I seeks a solution for its restlessness, trying to be free at least temporarily

from the abundance of external stimuli of senses and mind.

The I withdraws from noise and seeks the stillness of nature,
the loneliness of forests and mountains.

And when outer silence has been found and experienced for a while,
we then notice our inner restlessness of thoughts and feelings even more powerfully.

 

The longing for inner silence originates from a deeper source.

It can be found in the Soul, which is the nucleus of our microcosmic being.

This Soul is present within us, although it is asleep in our hearts.

 

This Soul manifests itself only if the I – the I-personality with its thinking,

feeling and willing focused on this world – is silent.

This Soul is waiting for the I to become silent, fundamentally silent.

This requires a fundamental change in the I-personality,
namely a new and neutral attitude with respect to earthly nature.

 

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Mrs. Mabel Collins wrote about this change in her booklet Light on the Path`:

 

In the deep silence the mysterious event will occur
which will prove that the way has been found.

It is a voice that speaks where there is none to speak,
it is a messenger that comes, a messenger without form or substance;
or it is the flower of the soul that has opened.

It cannot be described by any metaphor.

But it can be felt after, looked for, and desired,
even amid the raging of the storm.

The silence may last a moment of time or it may last a thousand years.

But it will end.

Yet you will carry its strength with you.

Again and again the battle must be fought and won.

It is only for an interval that Nature can be still.

 

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Mrs H.P. Blavatsky wrote beautifully about silence in her book

The Voice of the Silence. Here are some fragments:

 

Before the Soul can comprehend and may remember,
she must unto the Silent Speaker be united
just as the form to which the clay is modelled,
is first united with the potter's mind.

For then the soul will hear, and will remember.

And then to the inner ear will speak:

the Voice of the Silence.

 

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The word “silence” acquires a profound significance in these words.

An invisible process takes place in the silence, a process compared

with the creative process of a potter.

The imagined form of the vase is made into a concrete and unique work of art
on the basis of the mind and the hands of the artist.

In the same way, the seeker for the treasure of the Soul will have to possess a special quality.

 

The creative thought emanating from the Silent Speaker must be expressed through the Soul.

This is possible only if nothing stands between the spiritually striving person
and the Silent Speaker, not even the most tenuous image.

To this end the thinking, feeling and willing of the I-personality
will have to be neutralised with respect to earthly nature.

 

This state of being is addressed in The Voice of the Silence:

 

When to the World's turmoil your budding soul lends ear;
when to the roaring voice of the great illusion your Soul responds;
when frightened at the sight of the hot tears of pain,
when deafened by the cries of distress,
thy soul withdraws like the shy turtle within the carapace of selfhood,
learn, O Disciple, of her Silent “God”, your Soul is an unworthy shrine.

 

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With respect to the Divine Nature
the human mind is imprisoned within an all-encompassing illusion.

For that reason, we do not see things as they really are.

The illusion is nourished via the senses and forms the foundation

of our dialectical thinking.
Our thinking moves constantly back and forth between the perceived opposites
and in this way keeps humanity imprisoned in constant motion.

 

Only when we are unmoved, only when our thinking is neutral,
can we see things as they really are.

In this new state of consciousness we are going to understand

that there are two worlds:

the world of Divine Silence to which the Soul belongs;
and the world of the great Illusion to which the personality, the I, belongs.

 

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We know what the I-personality brings us in this world:
it brings illusion and delusion, but nothing permanent.

When we achieve this insight we then yearn for something else,
and we make inner room, inner silence, for this something else.

 

Silence is a fundamental state of the seeker for the Light.

In that state, all striving of the I after thinking, willing, feeling and acting is discontinued.

In that state, a yearning human soul can be touched by the Silent Speaker.

The I can become the permanent servant of the touched Soul through a

fundamentally changed mode of life.

Then the Soul can grow still further in order to forge a permanent link

with the eternal Silence.

 

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This state is described by Jan van Rijckenborgh in the book The Great Revolution':

 

The hearing of the Voice […] refers to the sound
that proceeds from the Power Field of the Immovable Kingdom.

Every power has a vibration of its own, and thereby its own resonance.

It is the music of the divine spheres which is audible to the pupil
when, in the stillness of his vanquished heart,
he has ended all striving as to this nature
and every struggle for the liberation of the I.

It is the magnetic voice calling the weary,
the power which brings true tranquillity.'

[…]

It is in the stillness of the defeated heart
that the peace of the eternal, vibrating reality can be born.(p.103)

 

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Silence is essential if a human being wants to create the conditions
in which he can be touched by the Voice of the Silence.

That voice is like an inner well.

The pure silence, in which harmony and peace can be found,
is more than the salutary absence of noise,
more than just the absence of turmoil.

From true inner silence, wisdom originates,
the wisdom that the Gnostics call the Sophia.

 

How can a human being be born again, from what matter and

from what primordial matrix?

This question is asked in the Corpus Hermeticum.

And Hermes Trismegistus answers:

 

From the Sophia which thinks in the silence.

That is: in the free original space,
and all particles of this matter are charged with great divine powers,
with ideas of the Logos, the Creator.

If our thinking is completely silenced
by perceiving the elusive universe around us and within us,
silence itself will touch us.

In order to become silent again, to become light again,
we should only look at what we have done
and return by the same way we have come.

 

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The Voice of the Silence has been transmitted to humanity

in many forms through the ages.

Over and over again there have been human beings
who succeeded in living on the basis of the silence,
the silence in which the voice of the universal life resounds,

and they have testified to it.

 

They are addressed in the book The Voice of the Silence.

 

Behold! You have become the light,
you have become the Sound,
you are your Master and your God.

You are yourself the object of your search:
the Voice unbroken, that resounds throughout eternities,
from sin exempt, the seven sounds in one, the Voice of the Silence.

(End of this quote.)

 

When our I has been silenced,
when it is prepared to make room for the Voice of the Silence,
then the Voice can be heard and the new Soul is born.

That new Soul will form the bridge to the world of the Spirit, to eternity.

 

Only the new Soul is able to hear the inner silence.

 

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May we find this inner silence so that the Voice and the Power of Silence may lead us on our paths of life.

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