Being Still and Doing Nothing
by Mark Votava
My world is so busy sometimes that I cannot listen to my context. Everything is loud and noisy. Unless I am intentional about practicing silence, rest and stillness – I become lost in the game of accomplishment. This makes me blind to the beauty of life.
Sometimes just stopping to care for myself is the hardest thing to do. I am told that this is of no value. I need to be constantly doing for the sake of looking busy and making money so I can be somebody in the world. But how much money do I actually need in the world?
I find myself constantly thinking about the word simplicity. I like this word because it seems to be freeing me to focus on my being, on who I am in my true self, on my interior growth, on being human. This is what I long for in life.
- Be still
“Be still and know that I am God…” (Psalm 46:10).
- An active world of accomplishment
It is so hard to be still within ourselves and do nothing. This is so difficult that most of us give up after awhile in an active world of accomplishment. Most of us do not value stillness within ourselves.
- Our being shapes us
We think being is not enough. But it is. Our being shapes us as the body of Christ in the parish.
- Our reflection and rest
Our reflection and rest moves us to stillness within. Our reflection and rest moves us to being. We are doing something profound when we do nothing and rest in our stillness within ourselves.
- Becoming a holistic counterculture in our local community
Our stillness could shape the body of Christ to become a holistic counterculture in our local community. Our reflection and rest needs this stillness within ourselves. The mystical imagination needs this stillness within ourselves to help us to reimagine life.
- God is in the stillness, silence and rest
God is in the stillness. God is in the silence. God is in the rest. God lives within our being.
- To do nothing
To be is to allow God to live within us freely and subversively. To be is to allow God’s wisdom to come alive in our embodiment of love. To do nothing is to do everything within us that cultivates life.
- Holding the mystical imagination within ourselves freely and openly
To do nothing is to hold the mystical imagination within ourselves freely and openly. We allow ourselves to be shaped by God through our relational context in the parish.
- To be still and do nothing
Beatrice Bruteau states, “We can’t bear simply to be still and do nothing…”
- Doing nothing leaves us with being
We do not know what to do when we do nothing. Doing nothing leaves us with being.
- Colonialism, domination and activity
Being is uncomfortable in a noisy world of colonialism, domination and activity. Being is discovered through refection and rest. Being is the core of the mystical imagination. Being is subversive.
- Being listens deeply to our lives together
Being is where we taste life within us as the body of Christ in the place we live. Being listens deeply to our lives together. Being reimagines. Being embraces countercultural ways of life.
Do you practice being still and doing nothing sometimes?