Thomas Merton on writing


“I can’t give up writing, and everywhere I turn I find the stuff I write sticking to me like fly paper, the gramophone inside me playing the same old tune: ‘ Admiration, admiration – You are my ideal – you are the one, original, cloistered genius, the tonsered wonder of the western world.’ It is not comforting to be such a confounded ape.”


” But then there was this shadow, this double, this writer who had followed me into the cloister. He is still on my track. I cannot lose him. He bears the name of Thomas Merton. Is it the name of an enemy? He is supposed to be dead….He generates books in the silence that ought to be sweet with the infinitely productive darkness of contemplation.”


 ” How necessary it is for monks to work in the fields, in the rain, in the sun, in the mud, in the clay, in the wind: these are our spiritual directors and our novice masters. They form our contemplation. They instil us with virtue. They make us as stable as the land we live on. You do not get that out of a typewriter.”              






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