"Let us labor for an inward stillness--
An inward stillness and an inward healing.
That perfect silence where the lips and heart
Are still, and we no longer entertain
Our own imperfect thoughts and vain opinions,
But God alone speaks to us and we wait
In singleness of heart that we may know
His will, and in the silence of our spirits,
That we may do His will and do that only”

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Views: 2585

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

Ray,

Thank you for posting this. It really touched my heart. Before I moved, I had a little 'alter' of sorts. It was a collection of different little things that meant something to me, or gave me a sense of peace, or worth. I have been in my new home almost two years, and have been missing it.  'Let us Labor...' is just the type of thing I would write out and possibly frame to put on it. I think after the new year i will have to find a home for my little 'alter'. In the mean time, I'll copy this and tuck it in my bible.:)

I'm glad you liked it Tina :^)

Well said. .

Thank thee Chris :^)

So how do Quakers "labor for an inward stillness"?

With deference to Longfellow, the labor is the female version for giving birth as opposed to the male version of furrowing a field. One sits/stands with a growing other-presence that makes its burdens and needs(healthy and happy living) known more and more each day/month. The other subjects itself to all the frustrating contingencies of life to produce sweat on the brow.
 
Spiny Norman said:

So how do Quakers "labor for an inward stillness"?

So in your view it's a passive rather than an active process?  I'd be interested to hear how you apply this in practice.

Perhaps, Friend, we should let "H.W." speak from his progeny; let alone women who may have something to say about "passive" laboring to give birth? Raising the seed within, not unlike raising a child, is precarious, not prescribed; so I'll stick with poetry, rather than Do-It-Yourself manuals, for Quaker praxis.
 
Spiny Norman said:

So in your view it's a passive rather than an active process?  I'd be interested to hear how you apply this in practice.

I'm finding the flowery language and mixed metaphors a little difficult to follow, Clem!

think you're saying there is no prescribed method in Quakers to develop inward stillness?  But are you saying people should just make up their own method(s)? 

"We wait - In singleness of heart (for) God alone speaks (that) we may know and do God's will (free from) our own imperfect thoughts and vain opinions". This sounds like Devotion&Trust(Quaker Worship) which is needed more in a relationship than with a method. But sure, if you don't know it(Quaker Worship), then make it up(Beware the DT's, however).
 
Spiny Norman said:

I'm finding the flowery language and mixed metaphors a little difficult to follow, Clem!

think you're saying there is no prescribed method in Quakers to develop inward stillness?  But are you saying people should just make up their own method(s)? 

Friend Ray!

Thank thee for sharing this. It is so very true and beautiful! Well articulated! Glad to have found and read this.

Blessings to thee,

~Timothy~

So what does a non-theist Quaker do?

Clem Gerdelmann said:

"We wait - In singleness of heart (for) God alone speaks (that) we may know and do God's will (free from) our own imperfect thoughts and vain opinions". This sounds like Devotion&Trust(Quaker Worship) which is needed more in a relationship than with a method. But sure, if you don't know it(Quaker Worship), then make it up(Beware the DT's, however).
 
Spiny Norman said:

I'm finding the flowery language and mixed metaphors a little difficult to follow, Clem!

think you're saying there is no prescribed method in Quakers to develop inward stillness?  But are you saying people should just make up their own method(s)? 

Reply to Discussion

RSS

Support Us

Did you know that QuakerQuaker is 100% reader supported? If you think this kind of outreach and conversation is important, please support it with a monthly subscription or one-time gift.


You can also make a one-time donation.

Latest Activity

Forrest Curo replied to Karl Malachut's discussion 'I converted to Judaism,Yet I am still a Friend' in the group Liberal Quakers
"LIkest-thou Zalman Schachter-Shalomi? Judaism seems to be even more varied in interpretations than…"
yesterday
Mike Shell posted a blog post
yesterday
Kirby Urner posted a discussion

From the Underground Railroad

From the Underground Railroad is a story I published on Medium, which one may read at no charge. …See More
4th day (Wed)
Mike Widney liked Jim Wilson's blog post Why I'm Not a Progressive Quaker
2nd day (Mon)
Patricia Dallmann posted a blog post

New Essay at Abiding Quaker: Introduction to "The Gospel and Self-Knowledge"

The following paragraph is an excerpt from a new essay of mine at…See More
2nd month 16
Karl Malachut added a discussion to the group Liberal Quakers
Thumbnail

I converted to Judaism,Yet I am still a Friend

Dear Friends,Three years ago I left the Clearness Process relieved I had made the right decision.…See More
2nd month 14
Keith Saylor commented on Keith Saylor's blog post 'Online Version of William Rogers 1680 text "The Christian Quaker..."'
"Quaker Research Document List The COMPLETED documents are Published on:…"
2nd month 13
Keith Saylor commented on Keith Saylor's blog post 'Online Version of William Rogers 1680 text "The Christian Quaker..."'
"In summer 2016, I set out on a journey to publish a facsimile copy of William Rogers' The…"
2nd month 10

© 2019   Created by QuakerQuaker.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service