We know that the last stage as Fr John Main describes is to listen to the mantra with deeper and deeper attention so that it becomes more and more subtle. What many people don’t understand about the mantra is that we change the way we say it over time, as we learn with faith to just say it, saying it, sounding it, listening to it, and listening to it with deeper and deeper attention, until the mantra leads us into complete silence. And in this silence, we don’t have the thought, ‘I am silent’, because that would be another thought. So the silence is the absence of thought.
(The Art of Waiting by Laurence Freeman OSB)