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Pat Loughery's lifestream

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Sometimes in a lowly cell, in the presence of my God

I stand and listen.

In the silence of my heart I can hear his will

When I listen despairing people flock to me

They expect that I can see the answers

They ask my advice, they say I am wise

I answer that nothing can deceive me, if I stand alone and silently listen

For I am but a servant who is guided by his king, when I listen

Sometimes in a lowly cell in the presence of my God I stand and listen

St. Columba of Iona

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If you want to identify me, ask me not where I live, or what I like to eat, or how I comb my hair, but ask me what I am living for, in detail, ask me what I think is keeping me from living fully for the thing I want to live for.
Thomas Merton (via observando)

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No writing on the solitary, meditative dimensions of life can say anything that has not already been said better by the wind in the pine trees.
Thomas Merton, Honorable Reader: Reflections On My Work (via litverve)

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I would like to stress the importance of silence in the ways a minister organizes his own life and that of others.  In a society in which entertainment and distraction are such important preoccupations, ministers are also tempted to join the ranks of those who consider it their primary task to keep other people busy.

But our task is the opposite of distraction.  Our task is to help people concentrate on the real but often hidden event of God’s active presence in their lives.

Hence, the question that must guide all organizing activity in a [church] is not how to keep people busy, but how to keep them from being so busy that they can no longer hear the voice of God who speaks in silence.

The Way of the Heart: The Spirituality of the Desert Fathers and Mothers” (Henri J. M. Nouwen), p. 63

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The life of contemplation in action and purity of heart is, then, a life of great simplicity and inner liberty. One is not seeking anything special or demanding any particular satisfaction. One is content with what is. One does what is to be done, and the more concrete it is, the better. One is not worried about the results of what is done. One is content to have good motives and not too anxious about making mistakes. In this way one can swim with the living stream of life and remain at every moment in contact with God, in the hiddenness and ordinariness of the present moment with its obvious task.
Thomas Merton from The Inner Experience

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This is the other secret that real artists know and wannabe writers don’t. When we sit down each day and do our work, power concentrates around us. The Muse takes note of our dedication. She approves. We have earned favor in her sight. When we sit down and work, we become like a magnetized rod that attracts iron fillings. Ideas come. Insights accrete.
Steven Pressfield (via writingquotes)