In Pursuit of Silence: A Quiet Movie with Much to Say

"Silence is where we speak something deeper than our words...""Silence returns us to what is real."These are two of many jewels of insight spoken over the course of In Pursuit of Silence, a luminous and vitally important movie, which, as far as I am concerned, everyone needs to see.In 2014 I interviewed the film's director Patrick Shen (read the interview here), and now I have had the privilege to screen the film ahead of its North American debut later this month at the SXSW Festival … [Read more...]

Sanctity and Struggle, or, Why Saints Have Chaotic Inner Lives (Hint: It’s Because We All Do)

An editor at Patheos recently pointed me to the following trailer, and suggested I blog some thoughts in response to it.Well, aside from being very interested in seeing the film, it makes me ponder how so many people we think of as "saints" or "mystics" or particularly "holy" often have interior lives shaped by profound struggle.We need look no further than Thomas Merton. Granted, he's nowhere near canonization (and I doubt he ever will be — he's more like Meister Eckhart than John of … [Read more...]

Talking about Silence: An Interview with Patrick Shen

Indie filmmaker Patrick Shen has made several award-winning documentaries, including Flight From Death (2003), a look at the human longing for immortality, and La Source (2012), an inspiring tale of an ordinary custodian's efforts to provide his hometown in Haiti with clean drinking water. But it's his current project that caught my eye: In Pursuit of Silence, a meditative film about the importance of silence for human beings — and the increasing noise that is drowning out silence in postmodern l … [Read more...]


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