Featured Book: Thoughts in Solitude

Week Five: Silence and Solitude for the Anxious

thoughts in solitude-mertonThomas Merton was well aware of the anxiousness and fragmentation of our wold. Perhaps he saw these trends with particular clarity because he had given so much time to solitude.

Solitude can be learned and developed, just as anxiety can be exposed and then replaced. These aren’t quick fixes or processes that happen over night. They take practice, with the word practice indicated a lot of imperfection and failure as we continue. However, the rewards are invaluable.

Thomas Merton writes in Thoughts in Solitude:


“Ours is a time of anxiety because we have willed it to be so. Our anxiety is not imposed on us by force from outside. We impose it on our world and upon one another from within ourselves.”


“The solitary life, being silent, clears away the smoke-screen of words that man has laid down between his mind and things.”


“When we are not living up to our true vocation, thought deadens our life, or substitutes itself for life, or gives in to life so that our life drowns out our thinking and stifles the voice of conscience. When we find our vocation—thought and life are one.”


“As soon as a man is fully disposed to be alone with God, he is alone with God no matter where he may be—in the country, the monastery, the woods or the city.”


Read more in Thoughts in Solitude


For Reflection

Featured Book for August 29 (1)