May 24, 2012
Julian Meditations

May, 2012

Too Deep for Words

by Richard Rohr

The gift of contemplative prayer is not a way of thinking. It's much more a way of not thinking. It's not a way of talking; it finally moves beyond words into silence. It moves into the mystery that is too deep for words.

I have said for years that our expression "peace of mind" is a contradiction in terms. I have never met anyone who is at peace who is in their mind; and I have never met anyone in their head who is at peace. Prayer must lead us beyond mind, words and ideas to a more spacious place where God has a chance to get in.

While the prayer of words is an attempt to express to ourselves our dependence on the great mystery, the prayer of silence is not so much to express, but to experience, that dependence. We acknowledge and rejoice that we are the beloved, created out of nothing.

I sit as content as a child on its mother's lap. I sit and wait until I know that truth in my body. Silence leads us to that kind of reveling in the mother's arms, reveling in the silence that follows making love.

There are no words. There is nothing to say, just the knowledge that "it is good. It is very good," as in Genesis One, the beginning of it all.

From Everything Belongs: The Gift of Contemplative Prayer by Richard Rohr, OFM (New York, New York: The Crossroad Publishing Company, 1999), p. 149.