December 13, 2017

Go Forth to Meet Him

Monday Merton Musings, December 19, 2011 Go Forth to Meet Him The week before Christmas has arrived. The words we hear from Thomas Merton today for our weekly meditation are brief but searching. For Christmas will come this year, just as it did long ago in Bethlehem. As on that occasion, some will be ready […]

The Three Advents

Monday Merton Musings, December 12, 2011 The Three Advents In one of the chapters in Seasons of Celebration, Thomas Merton reflects upon “The Sacrament of Advent in the Spirituality of St. Bernard.” St. Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153), from a noble family in the French province of Burgundy, became a monk at the monastery of Cîteaux, […]

Before We Can Become Gods We Must Be Men

Monday Merton Musings, December 5, 2011 Before We Can Become Gods We Must Be Men Thomas Merton contended that human beings have lost a great deal in modern, technological society. What we have gained in efficiency and productivity has, in many ways, sucked the humanity and spirituality from our inner beings. In this meditation from […]

The Anguished Seriousness of Advent

Monday Merton Musings, November 28, 2011 The Anguished Seriousness of Advent Today, we hear some of Thomas Merton’s thoughts on the Advent season. The certainty of Christian hope lies beyond passion and beyond knowledge. Therefore we must sometimes expect our hope to come in conflict with darkness, desperation and ignorance. Therefore, too, we must remember […]

How Clear and Solid the Doctrine

Monday Merton Musings, Nov. 21, 2011 How Clear and Solid the Doctrine All quotes are from The Seven Storey Mountain, by Thomas Merton • • • In the days when Thomas Merton began his graduate studies, he also began to feel the desire to go to a church for worship on Sundays. After some deliberation […]

The Splendor of a Higher Nature

Monday Merton Musings, Nov 14, 2011 The Splendor of a Higher Nature All quotes are from The Seven Storey Mountain, by Thomas Merton Today, we meditate on some theological thinking from Thomas Merton. These musings are found at the beginning of part two of his autobiography, The Seven Storey Mountain, and provide an introduction to […]

The Genius of an Art Full of Spiritual Vitality

Monday Merton Musings, Nov 7, 2011 The Genius of an Art Full of Spiritual Vitality All quotes are from The Seven Storey Mountain, by Thomas Merton One turning point in Thomas Merton’s life came at age 18, when he visited Rome. In The Seven Storey Mountain, he tells how he began touring churches throughout the […]

Meditations from Gethsemani

Monday Merton Musings, Oct 31, 2011 Meditations from Gethsemani It is good to be back with you, my friends. Thank you for understanding my need for a sabbatical. The past few months have been among the most intense and draining of my life. My edges were becoming all frayed and sparks flew whenever I got […]

The Merton Prayer

One of the books I will be reading and meditating upon during my sabbatical is Thomas Merton’s Thoughts In Solitude. A well-known passage from this book has been called, “The Merton Prayer” (see below). This prayer acknowledges that, despite our human tendency to think we know what life is about and how we can manage […]

Key Themes in Merton

I’ve been reading William H. Shannon’s fine book, Thomas Merton: An Introduction, as a way to begin knowing the famous monk better for myself. Shannon wrote this for folks who have little or no acquaintance with Merton, with the intent to show that his life and writings can still speak powerfully to people today. Along […]