Seeds of Silence: Essays in Quaker Spirituality...
By: R. Melvin Keiser - Christian Alternative, $22.95
Description: R. Melvin Keiser delves into the depths of Quaker spirituality and their philosophy, showing us that we require silence to unlock our relationship with God.
Seeds of Silence: Essays in Quaker Spirituality and Philosophical Theology questions the modern world’s addiction to distractions and instant gratification and leads us toward a semi-forgotten Christian tradition of contemplative thinking.
Verdict: In what is a must-read for today’s generation of heads down, eyes fixated on small, glowing screens humans, R. Melvin Keiser’s quite masterful, highly insightful and wholly direct Seeds of Silence: Essays in Quaker Spirituality and Philosophical Theology may well be imbedded in Quaker theology and spirituality, but at its heart it contains an imperative directive for us all to take on board and then spread the word of.
For the uninitiated, Quakers practice a religion of experience, a contemporary, simple, and radical faith. Quakers are also called Friends and Quakers believe that every person is known by God and can know God in a direct relationship.
The Quaker faith also has deep Christian roots. Many Quakers consider themselves Christians, and some do not. Many Quakers find meaning and value in the teachings of many faiths.
Quakers also strive to live lives that are guided by a direct encounter with the Divine, more than by teachings about the Divine. Quaker terms for the Holy include God, the Seed, the Light Within, and the Inward Teacher, among others.
Living through what are termed Testimonies, these are ways that Quakers have found to express their experience of the Divine in their lives. Furthermore, some of the best recognized testimonies include simplicity, integrity, equality, community, and peace.
Formulated as a deep dive into the roots, coherence and originality of Quaker living, other knowledge we glean is that Quakers gather in the silence and wait expectantly to come into the presence of the Divine and to be guided by the still, small voice by which God speaks to them from within.
During the silence anyone — child, woman, or man — may feel moved to offer a simple spoken message (vocal ministry) that is inspired by this holy encounter. Following the message, the silence resumes and a period of worship may include several messages or none.
Thus, and as I’m sure you can already tell, Seeds of Silence: Essays in Quaker Spirituality and Philosophical Theology is written with an honest sense of directness and honesty, where author R. Melvin Keiser opens himself up to the experience of wonderment and puzzlement that made him ask these inner-bound questions to himself at one time.
About the Author - R. Melvin Keiser, Professor Emeritus of Religious and Interdisciplinary Studies, Guilford College, Greensboro, North Carolina, USA, now lives in Black Mountain, North Carolina.
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