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Words of Wisdom

Living in God’s Grace: From “Thoughts in Solitude” by the Reverend Thomas Merton (vegetarian), Part 1 of 2

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The Reverend Thomas Merton, an important Catholic mystic and spiritual thinker, was born in 1915, to an American mother and a New Zealand father. Today, we will present selections from Thomas Merton’s book, “Thoughts in Solitude,” where the wise Reverend tells us the way to be more connected with God.

“As soon as you are really alone you are with God. Some people live for God, some live with God, some live in God. Those who live for God, live with other people and live in the activities of their community. Their life is what they do. Those who live with God also live for Him, but they do not live in what they do for Him, they are before Him. Their life is to reflect Him by their own simplicity and by the perfection of His being reflected in their poverty. Those who live in God do not live with other humans or in themselves still less in what they do, for He does all things in them.”

“You appreciate that all the values (treasure) of your spiritual act come from God – and your heart rests in the source from which all that is good in you comes. You do not possess your being in yourself but only in Him from Whom it springs.”

“The great work of the solitary life is gratitude. The hermit is one who knows the mercy of God better than others because his whole life is one of complete dependence, in silence and in hope, upon the hidden mercy of our Heavenly Father. The further I advance into solitude, the more clearly I see the goodness of all things. In order to live happily in solitude, I must have a compassionate knowledge of the goodness of others, a reverent knowledge of the goodness of all creation and a humble knowledge of the goodness of my own body and of my own soul. How can I live in solitude if I do not see everywhere the goodness of God, my Creator and Redeemer and the Father of all good?”

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