In order to learn who we really are, we must have a place in our lives where we are removed from the materialism, entertainment, diversion, and busyness that the Vanity Faith of our society and culture immerse us in. The things sold at the booths in the Fair are tranquilizers that separate us, and protect us, from the emptiness and need of our heart. As we leave these less-wild lovers behind and enter into solitude and silence in our own desert place, the first thing we encounter is not rest, but fear, and a compulsion to return to activity. In The Ascent to Truth, Thomas Merton says,
“We look for rest and if we find it, it becomes intolerable. Incapable of the divine activity which alone can satisfy [rest]…fallen man flings himself upon exterior things, not so much for their own sake as for the sake of agitation which keeps his spirit pleasantly numb…[The distraction] diverts us aside from the one thing that can help us to begin our ascent to truth…the sense of our own emptiness.”
– John Eldredge, “The Sacred Romance” p 172
May we all find a place to regularly “go to the top of the mountain”. It is there, alone with our Creator, that we find not only the depths of our own heart but the tip of eternal wisdom and creative thought.