In the silence of God we have overcome magic by seeing through what is not there, and realizing that He Who IS, is closer to us than the “is not” that tries at all times to place itself between ourselves and Him. 71

Magic uses powers under human control to manipulate life in an attempt to accomplish human aims.

The magician is the master. The magician controls the forces and appearances that are being utilized by the one whose interests are being served.

When I function as a magician I live in the illusion that the exercise of my power is the path to contentment and peace. I am serving my own small needs, wants, and desires. I am filling the world with my determinations and schemes in a futile attempt to banish the dark abyss of the fearsome “is not”.

So much of my life is driven by fearful fleeing from the “is not” that lurks always at the edges of my consciousness. The more I flee, the more I lose awareness of the divine reality that, in faith, I sense closer to me than the beating of my heart.

In silence my fretfulness grows still. I stop rushing after the illusion that I must fill the spaces of my days with activity. I stop seeking to escape the silence of my inner life with endless noise and chatter.

When I accept “the silence of God” my heart begins to break open to another dimension of being. I begin to discover that it is in the very midst of the silence that the beauty of the divine speaks and I discover the true fullness of that life that can never be extinguished.

On 19 March 1948 Thomas Merton wrote in his personal journal,

God hidden within me. I find Him by hiding in the silence in which He is concealed. (Entering The Silence 187)

God is “hidden within me.” I do not need to travel far seeking that which resides at the centre of my being. I need only to stop, be still and allow the ear of my heart to hear the stillness of God’s presence.

What am I attempting to do by filling my life with busyness, activity, and noise?

What happens when I stop and am still?