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Thomas Merton



Thomas Merton (1915–1968) was an American Roman Catholic Trappist monk, poet, author, theologian, student of interfaith understanding, and activist for social change. His work dove deep into the ways in which religions are similar, and he envisioned a more peaceful world through helping people understand and appreciate spiritual paths different from their own. He wrote over fifty books and countless essays on social justice, religion, and theology throughout his life, and he strove to weave mysticism into his works while connecting these beliefs to overarching societal ideas and structures.

Thomas Merton
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05:25

An Interview with Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi

Rabbi Zalman shares his experiences at the Abbey of Gethsemani, his meetings with Thomas Merton, ecumenism, and infused contemplation

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The New Man

The New Man shows Thomas Merton at the height of his powers and has as its theme the question of spiritual identity.

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No Man Is an Island

A recapitulation of his earlier work Seeds of Contemplation, this collection of sixteen essays plumbs aspects of human spirituality. Merton addresses those in search of enduring values, fulfillment, and salvation in prose that is, as always, inspiring and compassionate.

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FindCenter Quotes ImageThe beginning of love is the will to let those we love be perfectly themselves, the resolution not to twist them to fit our own image.

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Contemplative Prayer

In this classic text, Thomas Merton offers valuable guidance for prayer. He brings together a wealth of meditative and mystical influences—from John of the Cross to Eastern desert monasticism—to create a spiritual path for today.

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The Way of Chuang Tzu

Working from existing translations, Thomas Merton composed a series of his own versions of the classic sayings of Chuang Tzu, the most spiritual of Chinese philosophers. Chuang Tzu, who wrote in the fourth and third centuries B.C.

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New Seeds of Contemplation

New Seeds of Contemplation seeks to awaken the dormant inner depths of the spirit so long neglected by Western man, to nurture a deeply contemplative and mystical dimension in our lives. For Merton, "Every moment and every event of every man's life on earth plants something in his soul.

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FindCenter Quotes ImageArt enables us to find ourselves and lose ourselves at the same time.

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The Wild Land Within: Cultivating Wholeness through Spiritual Practice

The wilderness of the heart may be untamed, but you don't need to go there alone. In The Wild Land Within, spiritual companion and podcast host Lisa Colón DeLay offers a map to our often-bewildering inner terrain, inviting us to deepen and expand our encounters with God.

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16:15

Pope Francis Compares Catholic Radicals Thomas Merton and Dorothy Day to Lincoln and MLK

During his speech before Congress, Pope Francis highlighted the work of four “great” Americans: Abraham Lincoln, Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton.

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Cynthia Bourgeault