I can't seem to get motivated to get on with my 'real' life!
I've been wide awake since 4 am and now, several hours later, it feels odd that I've not been chanting the Psalms in chapel at least 3 times!
It seems I'm more at home with this reflection, contemplation and silence thing than I ever would have thought.
Not that it came naturally.
In fact, the first night I was at the Abbey, it felt like I had car loads of screeching moneys driving around in my head on a NASCAR track!
I have frequently said, in jest, "it's not pretty inside my head". I was never more keenly aware of it than the first night at New Mellary!
My thoughts would NOT quiet down and I slept poorly, which turned out to be a good thing since day begins at 3am with Vigil in the chapel.
Although, trust me, it does not look like this at that hour!
Here's a typical schedule:
3:30 - Vigil
4:00 - Lectio Divina
6:30 - Lauds
7:00 - Mass
7:30 - Breakfast (in silence)
9:15 - Terce
9:30 - Conference session (abut an aspect of Contemplative living in a busy World)
10:30 - Break
11:45 - Sext
12:00 - Lunch (in silence)
1:45 - None
2:00 - Conference session
5:30 - Vespers
6:00 - Supper in silence
6:30 - Discussion (optional)
7:30 - Compline and Grand Silence
My first thought was that there was NO way I was going to bed before 9pm!
Wrong; I probably didn't last beyond 8:30 any given day I was there!
There's much to think and pray about, on several fronts, some of which I'll bore you with and others, not so much.
I know I will privately be continuing the deepening dialogue between me and God.
One pictorial insight, if you will, for this post: these pictures were taken within minutes of each other from my room, looking across the courtyard into the monastery/the monks quarters.
I did - and it made a world of difference!
In fact, by the time I left, I was feeling all glowy and warm inside!