There are some who think there is no place for the contemplative life in Christianity. Quiet, interior prayer is an aberration. To be a Christian, they would say, means to serve our brothers and sisters. Jesus did remark, after all, "whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me" (Matthew 25:31-46). When we are just praying like monks, we are not serving anyone. Hence, there is no room for recollected prayer. That takes us away from the mission of Christ. Such is the claim.
I brought up this argument in my first talk on prayer a couple weeks ago. There are many flaws in that argument; many ways to rebut it. The Transfiguration, which we read about this weekend, is one such way.
Jesus climbs Mount Tabor with his apostles, Peter, James and John (the three whom he will take apart with him in the Garden of Gethsemane). He is elevated and experiences a mystical encounter with Moses and Elijah.
Yes, Moses represents the Law and Elijah represents the Prophets, but they also both represent interior, contemplative prayer. Moses for 40 days was on Mount Sinai, communing silently with God. He was immersed in a sort of luminous cloud, which the Hebrews called the shekinah. When Moses comes down the mountain after 40 days, his countenance is changed.