I Have Seen what I was Looking for : Selected Spiritual Writings
Author: Thomas Merton
Publisher: New City Press
Category: Biography & Autobiography
An informative and fascinating look at MertonÂ’s life and writings by a fellow-Trappist. Pennington describes Merton as Â“a monk, a mystic Â— yes! A merry, mischievous monk and a modern, muddied mystic. Deadly intent upon becoming a saint Â— what else is there to do Â— knowing that a can of beer is a help along the way.Â” Father Basil takes us on a whirlwind review through the seasons of MertonÂ’s life and work.
Thomas Merton is one of the most important spiritual voices of the last century. He has never been more relevant as new generations look to him for guidance in addressing some of life's biggest questions: how can we find God, how should we engage with other faiths, and how can we oppose violence and injustice? Looking carefully, one can find, tucked away in Merton's prodigious writings, his response to another timeless question: Why do we suffer? Why does an all-powerful and all loving God permit evil and suffering? By carefully examining all of Merton's work, we find that he repeatedly confronted this question throughout most of his adult life. Intriguingly, Merton's approach to this question changed dramatically a few years before he died in 1968. An examination of all aspects of his life yields evidence that Merton’s immersion in Zen during this time contributed most to that change.
For twenty-seven years, renowned and beloved monk Thomas Merton (1915-1968) belonged to Our Lady of Gethsemani, a Trappist monastery established in 1848 amid the hills and valleys near Bardstown, Kentucky. In Thomas Merton's Gethsemani, dramatic black-and-white photographs by Harry L. Hinkle and artful text by Merton scholar Monica Weis converge in a unique experience for lovers of Merton. Hinkle was allowed unprecedented access to many areas inside the monastery and on its grounds that are generally restricted. His photographs invite the reader to experience the various knobs, lakes, woods, and hermitages Merton sought out for times of solitude and contemplation and for reading and writing. These unique images, each accompanied by a passage from Merton's writings, evoke personal reflection and a deeper understanding of how and why Merton came to recognize himself as a part of his Kentucky landscape. Woven throughout the book, Weis's text explores Merton's fascination with nature not only at Gethsemani, but during his early childhood, throughout his spiritual conversion to Roman Catholicism, and while a member of the Trappist community. She examines how Merton's lifelong interaction with nature subtly revealed and informed his profound spiritual experiences and his writing about contemplation. Thomas Merton's Gethsemani replicates Merton's path on his solitary hikes in the woods and conveys the wonder of the landscapes that inspired him.
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.
In Thomas Merton's American Prophecy, Robert Inchausti provides a succinct summary and original interpretation of Merton's contribution to American thought. More than just a critical biography, this book lifts Merton out of the isolation of his monastic sub-culture and brings him back into dialogue with contemporary secular thinkers. In the process, it reopens one of the roads not taken at that fateful, cultural crossroads called "The Sixties." Inchausti presents Merton not as the spokesman for any particular group, cause, or idea, but rather as the quintessential American outsider who defined himself in opposition to the world, then discovered a way back into dialogue with that world and compassion for it. As a result, Merton was the harbinger of a still yet to be realized eschatological counter-culture: the unacknowledged precursor, alternative, and heir to Norman O. Brown's defense of mystery in the life of the mind.
Poet, Trappist monk, religious philosopher, translator, social critic: the late Thomas Merton was all these things. This classic selection from his great body of poetry affords a comprehensive view of his varied and progressively innovative work. Selected by Mark Van Doren and James Laughlin, this slim volume is now available again as a wonderful showcase of Thomas Merton’s splendid poetry.
Critical Explorations and Constructive Affirmations of Hoping Justice Prayerfully
Author: Barry K. Morris
Publisher: Wipf and Stock Publishers
What, pray tell, does a faithful urban ministry require if not a triadic relationship of prayer, justice, and hope? Could such a theologically conjunctive relationship of prayer, justice, and hope fortify urban ministry and challenge students and practitioners to ponder and practice beyond the box? Frequently, justice is collapsed to charity, hope into wishful thinking or temporarily arrested despair, and prayer a grasp at quick-fix interventions. An urban ministry's steadfast public and prophetic witness longs for the depth and width of this triad. Via three countries' decades of endeavors, one chapter brainstorms urban ministry practices while another's literature survey signals crucial convictions. Amid many, seminal theologians are summoned to ground urban ministry intimations and implications: Niebuhr on justice, Moltmann on hope, and Merton on contemplative prayer. Evident is passion that fuels compassion in the service of justice, hope that engages despair, and prayer that draws from the contemplative center of it all--thankful resources for long haul ministry. The triad presses to illumine a concrete ministry's engagement of relentless, forced option issues yet with significant networks resourcing. Contrast-awareness animates endurance. The summary exegetes the original grace-based serenity prayer. Hence, hope vitally balances realism's temptation to cynicism. Realism saves hope from irrelevancy.
With the election of a new Abbot at the Abbey of Gethsemani, Merton enters a period of unprecedented freedom, culminating in the opportunity to travel to California, Alaska, and finally the Far East – journeys that offer him new possibilities and causes for contemplation. In his last days at the Abbey of Gethsemani, Merton continues to follow the tumultuous events of the sixties, including the assassinations of Martin Luther King, Jr., and Robert Kennedy. In Southeast Asia, he meets the Dalai Lama and other Buddhist and Catholic monks and discovers a rare and rewarding kinship with each. The final year is full of excitement and great potential for Merton, making his accidental death in Bangkok, at the age of fifth-three, all the more tragic.
This book focuses on issues closely pertaining to Catholic schools to the larger questions of the Catholic imagination. The underlying thread, however, is the challenge of maintaining the richness of the Catholic imagination — of tuning the rig — in changing times and the ordinary life of the church.
"This is quintessential Merton."—The Catholic Review. "The moment of takeoff was ecstatic...joy. We left the ground—I with Christian mantras and a great sense of destiny, of being at last on my true way after years of waiting and wondering..." With these words, dated October 15. 1968, the late Father Thomas Merton recorded the beginning of his fateful journey to the Orient. His travels led him from Bangkok, through India to Ceylon, and back again to Bangkok for his scheduled talk at a conference of Asian monastic orders. There he unequivocally reaffirmed his Christian vocation. His last journal entry was made on December 8, 1968, two days before his untimely, accidental death. Amply illustrated with photographs he himself took along the way and fully indexed, the book also contains a glossary of Asian religious terms, a preface by the Indian scholar Amiya Chakravarty, a foreword and postscript by Brother Patrick Hart of the Abbey of Gethsemani, as well as several appendices, among them the text of Merton's final address.
Twentieth-Century Wisdom for Twenty-First-Century Living
Author: Paul R Dekar
Publisher: ISD LLC
Thomas Merton was arguably the twentieth century's most widely published and widely read spiritual writer. This book explores Merton's prophetic writings and experience as they offer guidance for those seeking to experience God, to simplify their lives, to live more humanly, and to shape Christian community in the face of alienation, consumerism, noise, and technology. The book includes parts of three previously unpublished conference contributions by Merton on technology. Exploring Merton's thoughts on monastic renewal, prayer, radical simplicity, ecology, technology, war, peace and interfaith dialogue, Dekar reminds us why Merton was so influential and why he continues to be so.
Presents 350 alphabetized entries on American Trappist monk, religious writer, and poet Thomas Merton, covering all of his published works as well as the persons, places, and themes that shaped his life.
Thomas Merton: God's Messenger on the Road towards a New World highlights the contribution of the best-selling North American writer between the Second World War and 1968. The Cistercian monk called people to act justly, love kindness, and walk humbly. By his critique of technology, a major impediment for people to follow Jesus; by his writing on contemplative prayer; by his interfaith outreach; and through his witness against racism, war, and degradation of nature, Merton still matters. This book uses Micah 6:8 to organize Merton's focus on justice, lovingkindness, and humility, as well as his dialogue with Rachel Carson, Ernesto Cardinal, Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Jr., Thich Nhat Hahn, and others.