About Cassidy Hall

With a background in counseling, I’ve been learning about the healing powers of silence for nearly 10 years. As an artist, I’ve been learning about silence’s vast interior spaces as places of great innovation, creation, and growth. In 2012, I traveled to the 17 Trappist Monasteries of the US and asking monks and nuns what silence meant to them and emerged with a new understanding of solitude, contemplation, and silence. One monk’s response about silence in particular has stuck with me to this day: “It is the place of infinite possibilities; it is the tomb of Christ.”

For the past 2 years, I’ve been working as a Co-Producer on the documentary film, In Pursuit of Silence – a film that explores our relationship with silence and the impact of noise on our lives. Silence is a stranger to no one, and whether we engage with it or not – it remains present to us all. I’m glad you’re here and wherever you are on your spiritual (or non-spiritual) journey, our whole team welcomes you to explore our vast interior spaces together.

A Poetic Hope

“I don’t care to wake up in the morning without hope. Hope is a survival mechanism.” Norman Lear, Producer I’ve been sleeping more than I usually do, and not because I need it. I’m waking up every day to the latest news alerts reminding me of our country’s status and that things can dramatically change overnight. Various forms of fatigue are taking over faster than we can define them: internet fatigue, news fatigue -- there’s a new reason for exhaustion every day if only just for the need to sta … [Read more...]

The Assurance of Winter

“In the midst of winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says that no matter how hard the world pushes against me, within me, there’s something stronger – something better, pushing right back.” Albert CamusI’ve had a disdain for winter for as long as I can remember. When I was a kid in Iowa, my older sister could get me to go outside only by explaining an exciting game we were going to play in the blistering cold. Her games usually involved … [Read more...]

Redwoods, Give Me A Word

The towering redwoods of northern California have always mystified me. I'm constantly swept away with awe and wonder, as if I've rewinded my life back into childhood. With my gaze upward and my mouth wide open, I oooo and ahhhh at the way the light shines through the endless towers, the great elevated heights of trees, and squint my way through each crevice in hopes of seeing the array of creatures who call these woods home.While on a stroll by a creek bed, I was so at ease with my … [Read more...]

The Voice of the Heart

Listening to the voice of my heart has never come easy for me. I'm usually quick to assume a present feeling is final, an agony is forever, or that all of my questions should have answers and answers NOW. Yet, I know better. And, the more I grow through those fleeting assumptions–the more I find myself truly pausing and listening to the utterances of my heart–the more I'm truly in touch with those parts of myself that so softly speak my own truth. “...Let everything happen to you: beauty and ter … [Read more...]

The Sacredness of Now

The bells began to ring just outside my window for Vigils, 3:15 am prayer, and I couldn’t help but roll over to doze off again until the next round of bells would awaken me a few hours later. I’m not sure how I was so lucky to receive a room with a view of the Abbey’s bell-tower and the monastery’s resting place for monks who have since left the world. I awoke each day overlooking the burial grounds of those who have prayed for decades before me, including Thomas Merton. In some way I felt all th … [Read more...]

The Desert Mirage

In 2012 I began traveling to monasteries for respite, silence, solitude, and space. I started these journeys feeling as if I was traveling to a museum – an aesthetic location of a tradition that’s been upheld for thousands of years; a place where people can go to see monks or nuns as if they’re some sort of monument to religion or life. Yet, much like the pilgrims that traveled to see the 3rd century desert fathers and mothers for a word; I emerge time and time again awoken by my own truth and em … [Read more...]

When Doing Nothing is Doing Everything

As originally posted on Huffington Post: "Knowing how to be solitary is central to the art of loving." Bell HooksThis time, after jumping in my car, no maps were necessary as I navigated my way towards New Mellerary Abbey for the 10th time since 2011. Maybe I had gone enough times to know my way, maybe something beyond myself was helping to guide me, or maybe there was nothing mystical to the experience other than the way I chose to view it. As soon as I arrived and settled in my room, t … [Read more...]

Resting in Silence

“It all happened in silence; it happens in silence.” A Monk of Snowmass MonasteryWhile visiting Gethsemani Abbey in 2013 (former home and resting place of Thomas Merton), I wandered off into the woods for a brief, silent walk. Although it was starting to get cold and the walk was beginning to feel long - I sensed a nudge to go just a little farther. Once reaching the top of the hill a deer briskly jumped over the path just in front of me and I was left smiling in awe the entire way back to th … [Read more...]

The Modern Day Desert

“To allow oneself to be carried away by a multitude of conflicting concerns, to surrender oneself to too many demands, to commit oneself to too many projects, to want to help everyone in everything is to succumb to violence. More than that, it is cooperation in violence. It destroys his own inner capacity for peace. It destroys the fruitfulness of his own work, because it kills the root of inner wisdom which makes the work fruitful.” Thomas Merton Monasticism and spirituality is no stranger to t … [Read more...]

The Company of Hope

 “As I breathe, I hope.” CiceroWe all know that this isn’t a pleasant time of year for everyone. For many, it’s a catapult into memories of lost loved ones, a springboard that could lead one to relapse, a sadness that feels all too dark and distant to cure or maybe even understand.Paradoxically, this is supposed to be a season of great joy. A time in which we sense an undertone of expectation to have smiles plastered on our faces. For me, I instead cling to this being a season of hope. No … [Read more...]