The year was 2018. Every year is different, but this year was special for me. Why? In 2018, after more than two years of living in the North Pacific West, I decided to leave. My goal was to live and work on the east coast of the United States. However, I had no idea what God had prepared for me. I just thought to myself that I'd find a new job and life goes on. One of many reasoning to move was that it’s different to come somewhere for a while and another to live. The job I applied for was only less than 15 minutes away from the Carthusian monastery. And that was fatal for me. Perhaps, you don't know yet, but I've looked for a spiritual vocation in the past. Personally, it's my belief that every day we decide on something and that becomes our vocation. Whether we realize it or not. That is why it is important to decide on a daily basis and do what we are called to do. Want to know more? So read this blog about silence and solitude.
You probably already figured it out by now. Yes, instead of starting work, I decided to go to a monastery, where I spent two unforgettable months.
On Wikipedia, we can read that the Carthusians, also known as the Order of Carthusian or the Order of Saint Bruno, are an enclosed religious order of the Roman Catholic Church. The order was founded by Bruno of Cologne in 1084 and includes both monks and nuns. The order has its own rule, called the Statutes, and their life combines both eremitical (a person who lives in seclusion from society) and cenobitic (community life) monasticism. The motto of the Carthusians is “Stat crux dum volvitur orbis” which means "The Cross is steady while the world is turning". The name Carthusian is derived from the Chartreuse Mountains in the French Alps. Saint Bruno built his first hermitage in a valley of these mountains. These names were adapted to the English charterhouse, meaning a Carthusian monastery.
At present, the Order is composed of about 450 monks and nuns who live a solitary life at the heart of the Church; there are 24 Houses in three continents, all dedicated exclusively to the contemplative life according to the Carthusians website.
We live in a world of constant change. It appears, a never-ending hunger for more. Have you thought of retrieving from this world into a silence? Silence is richer than gold. It possesses a glimpse of eternity. Perhaps, I could stop right here, because silence does not need words. But how would I describe it otherwise? We are so used to constantly thinking or doing something. How it would be different if we stop thinking and doing? Can we even imagine that? Even better, can we try doing so? Hold down and give a try. One could say, suddenly there is nothing. And that is precisely where we want to get. To nothing. Because nothing is more than you can think of. Longer you stay in the stage of silence, more you realize it. It becomes more obvious to you who you are, and who is your Creator.
Although it could sound frightening, solitude is an everlasting source of flowing energy for you. I know and understand, it can be hard or difficult at first. Once you taste the state of solitude, you realize that it’s not that bad but good for you, for your whole being and your soul as well. I'd like to encourage you to take time off from everything and everyone and do nothing. More importantly, just be who you really are. You will discover that you are an amazing human being, with everything you need. Yes, we want so much, but indeed we need less and less. Do you remember when you were born? How did you look like, what did you wear and or what did you need? Come back to yourself in solitude.
Getting to know yourself
Once you fall into the state of silence and solitude, your senses become more and more activated. Soon after you come to the conclusion, how much more there is about you. Your breathing will be louder than ever before. Suddenly you hear it. The emptiness from all will lead you to rediscover yourself. Whether you like it or not, it’s your desired state. Because you get to know yourself more than ever before. I am sure you will like it. You realize how much more worth you are.
Connecting with your Creator
Did you know that you are never alone? Your Creator, God the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit is with you no matter what. We often read or hear about Him being present in the most vulnerable, needy, oppressed, or marginal in this world. God is always with us. When we are lonely, He is with us even more. When we allow ourselves to be silent and in solitude, we are no longer distracted by everything and everyone around us. Cherish the moment and time with Him. You never know how He will surprise you and what He wants to tell you. I am convinced that He will reassure you of His love and care for you. Give yourself a chance to connect with your Creator that way.
In simple words, it is time to take steps. Perhaps think about it first. Do not forget to pray about it as well. You are about to embark on the journey of inner enrichment in your life. Decide for silence and solitude, get to know yourself, connect with God, it's my and your call to action.