In Emerging Heart: Global Spirituality and the Sacred, Beverly Lanzetta presented a cogent and imaginative mystic path into the future. As the founder of Interfaith Theological Seminary, Desert Interfaith Church, and Hesychia School of Spiritual Direction, she challenges us to forge a global spirituality that blends interfaith and feminist perspectives, contemplative practices, and a keen appreciation of the heart's response to a battered world of injustice, environmental destruction, and rampant violence.
A New Silence picks up where Emerging Heart left off. It contains a treasure-trove of resources for those who are yearning for "a deeper contemplative orientation to daily life." Here you will find four interlocking themes:
- embodied spirituality grounded in the sacred web of life;
- the mystical path of the feminine, inspired by women's monastic communities;
- the archetype of the monk that is the deep truth of every person;
- the interdependence of the world's wisdom traditions, expressed through interfaith and interspiritual dialogue.
How does a soul grow in holiness? Lanzetta points to five divine virtues: humility, compassion, nonviolence, simplicity, and love. These states of being strengthen the center point of stillness. In a section on Spiritual Formation, the author explores the process of turning one's life around, a life shaped by relationships, practicing the inner way, and cultivating mindfulness.
The last three sections of the book speak to our condition, as the Quakers would put it. We identify with Lanzetta's praise of energy, creative imagination, healing as spiritual autobiography, personal vows, a rule of life, empathic knowing, honoring solitude, tracking of emotions, and living in God's time.
A New Silence is already overflowing with meditations, prayers, and practices. As a special bonus, Lanzetta adds a study guide with promptings for spiritual engagement with the text.