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Lunchtime Conversation: Silences

After a noisy upbringing as one of six children, and adulthood as a vocal feminist and mother, Sara Maitland began to crave silence. Over the past five years, she has spent periods of silence in the Sinai desert, the Australian bush, and a remote cottage on the Isle of Skye. Her memoir of these experiences is interwoven with the history of silence through fairy-tale and myth, Western and Eastern religious traditions, the Enlightenment and psychoanalysis, up to the ambivalence towards silence in contemporary society. Maitland has built a hermitage on an isolated moor in Galloway, and the book culminates powerfully with her experiences of silence in this new home. “A Book of Silence” is a deeply thoughtful, honest and illuminating memoir about a phenomenon too often neglected in the contemporary world.

Book of silence copyThe Book of Silence by Sarah Maitland was the topic for January’s Lunchtime Conversation. The session was led by LCI’s Director, Margaret Halsey.

Lunchtime Conversations is a book club for theological books. Every six weeks a group of between 10 and 20 people from different theological backgrounds meet in LCI’s library to discuss a particular title over a bite to eat. Topics so far have ranged from how language is always contextual, to whether the church can be fully church without embracing those who are disabled by society. Each session is led by a member of the group. Anybody is welcome – you don’t have to have read the book being discussed, in fact after the session we hope that you might want to borrow it from the library!

If you came to the conversation and would like to write something about it, please leave a comment!

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