By Thomas Merton
The 3rd quantity of Thomas Merton's journals chronicles Merton's makes an attempt to reconcile his wish for solitude and contemplation with the calls for of his new-found megastar prestige in the strictures of traditional monastic life.
Read Online or Download A Search for Solitude: Pursuing the Monk's True LifeThe Journals of Thomas Merton, Volume 3: 1952-1960 (Merton, Thomas Journal of Thomas Merton) PDF
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Additional resources for A Search for Solitude: Pursuing the Monk's True LifeThe Journals of Thomas Merton, Volume 3: 1952-1960 (Merton, Thomas Journal of Thomas Merton)
In the morning, in the scriptorium, I have begun to review my moral theology on the Eucharist. Whatever I can give to God and to other men is only the effect and manifestation in me of the power of the Passion of Jesus. I would reply to his action and let Him show Himself in my life. This He will do in a way I have both expected and not expected; planned and not planned; desired and not desired. My decisions do not anticipate His coming: they manifest that He has come, if they be His decision. February 22, 1953.
September 17, 1952. Ember Wednesday The woods all smell of malt because the South wind blows, bringing us news of the distillery a mile away. Clouds in the sky. It will rain and tomorrow will suddenly be cold and the year’s end will be upon us. Already the leaves seem to be changing color–and they are, not because it is fall. They were dried up by the dry summer. This morning I did not say Ember day Mass but the mass of St. Francis because it is the feast of his stigmatization. September 19, 1952.
But that means a preparation in gentleness. A gentleness, a silence, a humility I have never had before–which seems impossible in the tension of the community where even my compassion is tinged with force and strain. But if I am called to solitude it is, I think, to un-learn all tension, and get rid of the strain that has always falsified me in the presence of others and put harshness into the words of my mind. If I have needed solitude, it is because I have always so much needed the mercy of Christ and needed His humility and His charity.