Tunnel House

by | Feb 24, 2021

In quaint structures dotted about the isle, the monks of Estillyen give their dramatic readings based on Scripture narratives. In Chapter Ten of Messages of Estillyen, readers are introduced to Tunnel House, where a monk named Drama gives a dramatic reading titled Cry in the Crowd.
Before such readings, the presenting monk offers introductions. On this particular day in Tunnel House, Drama addresses a group of twenty-eight people gathered in the upper room awaiting the reading:
“We like Tunnel House for readings because a tunnel is a space for going through; from one side you pass to the other side. One end of the tunnel may show through to clouds and rain, the other end sunshine. Smiles may populate one end, sorrows the other.
“Tunnels are an experience. Some people simply dash through them, while others tend to plod along. Tunnels have a way of silently transmitting to travelers the pace prescribed.
“In life, sometimes it can be difficult to discern one’s direction. In a tunnel, there are only two directions: this and that. But that can look like this, and this, that. Tunnels are funny that way. They can lead you in, or take you away. In and out you go . . .
“A tunnel is a tunnel true—never a passage or a pass. Calling a tunnel something else is like suggesting a crevice is a cave, or a canyon a crack. No, a tunnel is that which surrounds you. You see it all. There’s no denying you’re in it. Encased within you are; through its artery you progress.
“It’s not wise, particularly when inside a tunnel deep, to start racing toward what appears to be a dimming light. For if you do, the light can go out; it can disappear. Before you get to the end, another tunnel has begun, and tunnel two may be twice as long as tunnel one.
“It’s always best when in tunnel space to move at tunnel pace. Respecting the sense of tunnel enclosure is the mode. See it as a kind of caregiver, a respite from the elements that will bring you through, in tunnel time, to the life God has for you.
“Well, that’s a word on tunnels.”

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