Thomas Merton (1915 – 1968)

Thomas Merton Quote – “Suffering is not a problem…”

It would be a grave error to suppose that Buddhism and Christianity merely offer various explanations of suffering, or worse, justifications and mystifications built on this ineluctable fact. On the contrary both show that suffering remains inexplicable most of all for the man who attempts to explain it in order to evade it, or who thinks explanation itself is an […]

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Thomas Merton Quote – “This is a country whose center is everywhere…”

This is a country whose center is everywhere and whose circumference is nowhere. You do not find it by travelling but by standing still. Yet it is in this loneliness that the deepest activities begin. It is here that you discover act without motion, labor that is profound repose, vision in obscurity, and beyond all desire, a fulfillment whose limits […]

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Thomas Merton Quote – “Instead of consolers, they become torturers…”

The friends of Job appear on the scene as advisers and “consolers,” offering Job the fruits of their moral scientia. But when Job insists that his sufferings have no explanation and that he cannot discover the reason for them through conventional ethical concepts, his friends turn into accusers, and curse Job as a sinner. Thus, instead of consolers, they become […]

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Thomas Merton Quote – “To know when you can get no further by your own action…”

If you persist in trying to attain what is never attained (It is Tao’s Gift!), if you persist in making effort to obtain what effort cannot get, if you persist in reasoning about what cannot be understood, you will be destroyed by the very thing you seek. To know when to stop, to know when you can get no further […]

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Thomas Merton Quote – “It is in this darkness that we find liberty…”

And it is in this darkness, when there is nothing left in us that can please or comfort our own minds, when we seem to be useless and worthy of all contempt, when we seem to have failed, when we seem to be destroyed and devoured, it is then that the deep and secret selfishness that is too close to […]

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Thomas Merton Quote – “There is no joy in things that do not exist…”

In humility is the greatest freedom. As long as you have to defend the imaginary self that you think is important, you lose your peace of heart. As soon as you compare that shadow with the shadows of other people, you lose all joy, because you have begun to trade in unrealities, and there is no joy in things that […]

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Thomas Merton Quote – “For this is what all hearts pray for…”

Come, let us go into the body of that light. Let us live in the cleanliness of that song. Let us throw off the pieces of the world like clothing and enter naked into wisdom. For this is what all hearts pray for when they cry, “Thy will be done.” Thomas Merton (1915 – 1968)

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Thomas Merton Quote – “Since God cannot be imagined…”

If nothing that can be seen can either be God or represent Him to us as He is, then to find God we must pass beyond everything that can be seen and enter into darkness. Since nothing that can be heard is God, to find Him we must enter into silence. Since God cannot be imagined, anything our imagination tells […]

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Thomas Merton Quote – “This is the greatest stumbling block…”

This is the greatest stumbling block in our spiritual discipline, which, in actuality, consists not in getting rid of the self but in realizing the fact that there is no such existence from the first. The realization means being “poor” in spirit. “Being poor” does not mean “becoming poor.” “Being poor” means to be from the very beginning not in […]

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