Anne Cushman

Anne_Cushman_2Reading Thomas Merton during the 1970s introduced me to the idea of interior silence, but I had no framework for its application until 1990 when Cynthia Bourgeault and Peter Panagore led a series of classes in Deer Isle on the teaching of Thomas Keating and the practice of Centering Prayer. Incorporating intentional silence into daily living and learning to attend to its promptings is, of course, the work of a lifetime. Further study and retreats and Wisdom School with Cynthia, participation in Shalem-led groups and pilgrimage, Bible study as well as study of other faith traditions, and weekly Meditation with fellow seekers—all have fostered and deepened my commitment to a contemplative pathway through the thicket of experience that we call "real life." The spiritual journey is, to me, the reality, the fully lived and embodied truth.

Since 2005 I have been associated with the founders and friends of the Northeast Guild for Spiritual Formation. This community has helped to "root and ground" me in conscious love and enabled me to lead monthly Quiet Days on the Blue Hill Peninsula for those who seek a setting and support for silence and reflective conversation. Guided by my colleagues in the Guild as well as by prayerful practice, I offer companionship to individuals who feel the need of a witnessing presence in their lives.

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