probably the best book ever on Silence; Robert Sardello on clearing space for silence and allowing grace.
When we have cleared a space for the presence of Silence to enter into whatever we are doing, we feel the presence of grace in our lives. When we have gotten to the point of feeling the desire of Silence and can call to heart that feeling when we are about to begin our day and our work, we feel graced. Grace is a second alteration of the soul that comes through the work of clearing. Grace is the permeation of our soul with divine love. It is a very palpable bodily feeling. It feels as if we are accompanied by a radiance, and in the midst of such radiance we radiate a glow. Sometimes others can even see or intuit the presence of this glow.
“The presence of the grace of Silence is diffuse, soft, and yet brilliant. When we are graced, it is impossible to hold onto its presence for ourselves, for the nature of being graced is to grace others. The power of grace unblocks whatever is blocked. For example, we find ourselves able to speak things we have not been able to speak before. It is not that we didn’t know these things or that we were hiding them, but without the presence of grace we have an essential inability to say what we feel or think or imagine that is of a spiritual nature. We tend to hold back, not letting that dimension of our inner experience into the world. We do not find words adequate to spiritual experience. With the presence of grace we do not become preachy, nor do we interpret what we do in terms of any kind of religious doctrine; rather, the hidden fullness of who we are and what we are doing becomes available. We now feel that we are overshadowed by the spirit-beings of love. This experience releases us from the kind of incessant self-examination we usually get caught up in.
“Grace does not free us from our weaknesses and our suffering, but it does free us from the feeling that these difficulties make life complex. Grace brings a newfound sense of simplicity. Everything that seems complex and incomprehensible is taken over by grace and what seems complicated is solved. Through the presence of grace we know what is wanted of us and we are able to respond. Problems decrease in importance. They are still around, but they do not present themselves as limitations or obstacles. The kind of hesitation we are accustomed to feeling, as in ‘I could do this, if it weren’t for that’ simply does not seem to be present. Our problems take their place within a larger context, where they are held in balance with their inherent possibilities and a deep centering sense of the spiritual nature of our actions.
“We cannot control grace or make it happen, but it is very obvious to us when it is present. It is bestowed, but it requires the receptivity that we develop through our connection with Silence. Grace divests us from what seems to be ours, so the presence of grace is often accompanied by our sense of being less in control and of possessing nothing. As we continue to clear away what we feel are our private possessions, grace increases. Keeping our connection with Silence becomes crucial, then, because we can easily feel that we are losing our identity as we undergo a transformation of who we know ourselves to be. We begin to find, though, that we are carrying far more than what has been allotted to us to carry and that we have identified with that extra baggage. In large measure, we are fated to suffer the limitations of our bodily being, our circumstances, and our history, but this naturally given fate is accompanied by grace, the capacity to shape creatively and utilize our conditions to make something new. When, however, we take in and live according to what the prepackaged world gives, we lose our sense of being graced. We are then carrying things that do not belong to us, even though we have become convinced that we do.