"Solitude is the stonghold of the strong. Strength is an active virtue, and our power of keeping silence marks the level of our capacity for action. 'Without this interior cell, we would be incapable to doing great things, either for ourselves or for others.'
"The weak and unstable dislike to be alone. The majority of people look to amusement to save them from exerting themselves. They lose themselves in what is nought so that self may not be lost in what is all.
"It must be understood that when silence is recommended, it is interior silence that is meant, which should be imposed upon the senses and imagination to avoid the liability of being taken out of ourselves in spite of ourselves at every moment. If the oven door is perpetually kept open, to adopt the simile used by St. Teresa, the heat will escape. It takes a long while to raise the temperature, but a second is sufficient for it to run down. A crack in the wall will let in the icy outer air, and the whole process has to be begun again.
"An excellent method of preserving interior silence is to keep exterior silence. Even in the world, each one of us can make his own solitude, a boundary beyond which nothing can force its way unperceived.
"It is not noise itself that is the difficulty, but noise that is pointless; it is not every conversation, but useless conversations; not all kinds of occupation, but aimless occupations. In point of fact, everything that does not serve some good purpose is harmful. It is foolish, nay, more, it is a betrayal to devote to a useless objective power that can be given to what is essential."
~Raoul Plus SJ
"How to Pray Always"