Radio 3 - Slow Radio series ..

From Bev...

Here are summaries of Five 'Slow Radio' soundscapes (from Radio 3) featuring themes from monastic life (podcasts available) :-   

1)     SILENCE : 23rd Oct Tonight, in the first in the series, monks from Downside, Belmont and Pluscarden Abbeys meditate on the subject of silence, against a background of chant and sounds evocative of the peace and serenity of the monastery. The programmes allow the listener to appreciate life at a monk's pace, reflecting the gentleness and calm of monastic life. Listeners will hear musings from the monks themselves, interspersed with their singing and sounds from the natural world. The series is available for download as a podcast. It accompanies the BBC 4 television series Retreat: Meditations from a Monastery, which visits the monasteries in search of inner peace, presenting an alternative to the hectic pace of modern daily life.

Monks need silence & love it in order to pray. We need silence a) inside your head to shut off the whirlpool of whirling thoughts and b) to calm your heart with all its attachments and desires. Try to put them aside and Be Still before God. St Benedict’s firstly wanted people to LISTEN. He is often portrayed with fingers on lips inviting us to SILENCE – not of coldness or hostility or indifference but SILENCE OF ADORATION. It’s not silence for silence’s sake, or to cut yourself off from other people - but TACITURNITY : silence for recollection, reflection; to create inner & outer peace for prayer, reading & study. Our speech could be a weapon used to wound or hurt others or to promote or justify ourselves – to put ourselves up and put others down. St Benedict wanted all such speech  banished from the monastery. He wanted silence to go deeper, into the state where you are walking with God all the time. You have to work at finding silence in a noisy world of machines, cars, planes etc. Silence is heaven.

2)     PRAYER :  24th Oct Tonight, in the second in the series, monks from Downside, Belmont and Pluscarden Abbeys meditate on the subject of prayer, against a background of chant and sounds evocative of the peace and serenity of the monastery

3)     WORK 25th Oct Tonight, in the third in the series, monks from Downside, Belmont and Pluscarden Abbeys meditate on the subject of work, against a background of chant and sounds evocative of the peace and serenity of the monastery.  

4)     MEDITATION  26thOct : Tonight, in the fourth in the series, monks from Downside, Belmont and Pluscarden Abbeys meditate on the subject of meditation, against a background of chant and sounds evocative of the peace and serenity of the monastery.

5)      LOVE 27th Oct : Tonight, in the last in the series, monks from Downside, Belmont and Pluscarden Abbeys meditate on the subject of love, against a background of chant and sounds evocative of the peace and serenity of the monastery.