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Thomas Merton was recognized as one of those rare Western minds that are entirely at home with the Zen experience. In this collection, he discusses diverse religious concepts-early monasticism, Russian Orthodox spirituality, the Shakers, and Zen Buddhism-with characteristic Western directness. Merton not only studied these religions from the outside but grasped them by empathy and living participation from within. "All these studies," wrote Merton, "are united by one central concern: to understand various ways in which men of different traditions have conceived the meaning and method of the 'way' which leads to the highest levels of religious or of metaphysical awareness."
Thoughtful and eloquent, as timely (or timeless) now as when it was originally published in 1956, Thoughts in Solitude addresses the pleasure of a solitary life, as well as the necessity for quiet reflection in an age when so little is private. Thomas Merton writes: "When society is made up of men who know no interior solitude it can no longer be held together by love: and consequently it is held together by a violent and abusive authority. But when men are violently deprived of the solitude and freedom which are their due, the society in which they live becomes putrid, it festers with servility, resentment and hate." Thoughts in Solitude stands alongside The Seven Storey Mountain as one of Merton's most uring and popular works. Thomas Merton, a Trappist monk, is perhaps the foremost spiritual thinker of the twentiethcentury. His diaries, social commentary, and spiritual writings continue to be widely read after his untimely death in 1968.
This diary of a monastic life is “a continuation of The Seven Storey Mountain . . . Astonishing” (Commonweal). Chronicling six years of Thomas Merton’s life in a Trappist monastery, The Sign of Jonas takes us through his day-to-day experiences at the Abbey of Our Lady of Gethsemani, where he lived in silence and prayer for much of his life. Concluding with the account of Merton’s ordination as a priest, this diary documents his growing acceptance of his vocation—and the greater meaning he found within his private world of contemplation. “This book is made unmistakably real and almost, at times, unbearably poignant by the fact that the exuberance of youth so often wells up through it with rapture, impatience, and even bluster.” —TheNew York Times “A stirring book—the most readable and on the whole, most illuminating of the author’s writings.” —Catholic World
This book includes a collection of essays on the poetry of Thomas Merton (1915-1968), one of the most relevant spiritual masters of the twentieth century. These scholarly inquiries are all glimpses which accurately represent his poetics of dissolution-the dissolution of the old corrupt world in favour of an apocalyptic vision of a new world. Este libro incluye una colección de ensayos sobre la poesía de Thomas Merton (1915-1968), uno de los maestros espirituales más relevantes del siglo XX. Todas estas investigaciones académicas dejan entrever lo que representa exactamente su poética de desintegración: la descomposición del viejo mundo corrupto a favor de una visión apocalíptica de un nuevo mundo, categorizaciones abstractas de lo sobrenatural que dan paso a una experiencia íntima y más dinámica de lo sagrado en el hogar y en el mundo.
We are becoming a nation of superficial and distracted consumers of instant messages and images, a state of being which does not aid engagement in religious and other deep commitments that require a sustained level of reflection and contemplation. In his thought-provoking work, Phillip M. Thompson analyses the shadow elements of technology - nuclear armaments, the bio-engineering of humans, and the distancing of humanity from the natural world - through the fascinating insights of the spiritual writer and monk Thomas Merton (1915-1968). Merton's work offers an important critique and healing resource for contemporary, technology-saturated culture through constructive recommendations which include a balanced approach to work, the careful management of technology, and an appreciation of the recuperative aspects of nature. While understanding the positive influences of technology, Merton urges us not be naively optimistic about its benefits, but to consider the threat it poses to a life of humanity and spiritual connection. A consideration of the profound issues discussed in this book will interest any reader concerned with the intersection between spirituality and technology, and how to maintain spiritual integrity in a technological world.
Thomas Merton (1915-1968) was one of the most influential spiritual writers of modern times. A Trappist monk, peace and civil rights activist, and widely-praised literary figure, Merton was renowned for his pioneering work in contemplative spirituality, his quest to understand Eastern thought and integrate it with Western spirituality, and his firm belief in Christian activism. His autobiography, The Seven Storey Mountain, is the defining spiritual memoir of its time, selling over one million copies and translating into over fifteen languages. Merton was also one of the most prolific and provocative letter writers of the twentieth century. His letters (those written both by him and to him), archived at the Thomas Merton Studies Center at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky, number more than ten thousand. For Merton, letters were not just a vehicle for exchanging information, but his primary means for initiating, maintaining, and deepening relationships. Letter-writing was a personal act of self-revelation and communication. His letters offer a unique lens through which we relive the spiritual and social upheavals of the twentieth century, while offering wisdom that is still relevant for our world today.
A unique meditation on the life & writings of Thomas Merton by one of the most popular Catholic writers today. "In reading this book one can meet for a brief moment, the living spirit of Merton. It is a refreshing encounter." (John Eudes Bamberger)

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