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Thoughts In Solitude Paperback – November 29, 1999
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The renowned Trappist monk Thomas Merton wrote Thoughts in Solitude in 1953 and 1954, when his superiors allowed him extended periods of seclusion and meditation. This elegant gift book, with clean, spare type and graphics, does justice to a 20th-classic (this is its 25th printing). What has made this book such an enduring and popular work is that it recognizes how important solitude is to our morality, integrity, and ability to love. One does not have to be a monk to find solitude, notes Merton; solitude can be found in the act of contemplation and silent reflection in everyday life. Also, this is not a pious book that assumes that a relationship with the divine can be obtained only by denying our humanity and striving for saintliness. Instead, Merton asserts that connection with God can most easily be made through "respect for temperament, character, and emotion and for everything that makes us human." --Gail Hudson --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"The writing itself, uniformly high in quality, seems one great burst of energy―the lifeward push of a man who loved cities and people but who loved solitude and God more, and who found a tolerable midpoint when he was alone and writing to somebody." – The New Yorker
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consrcrated anchorite (canon 603)
As an example, this book is the source of Merton's famous prayer: "O God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will always lead me by the right road, though I may know nothing about it. Therefore, I will trust you always, though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone."
It is a beautiful work on prayer and meditation though not obviously and there are not step-by-step lessons on how to pray and meditate. With a little thought and soul-searching, however, I think most readers would understand that point.
His relationship with heavenly father, his humility, the love his words convey, are all reasons to return to all!
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My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going.Read more