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Contemplative Life
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New Seeds of Contemplation

New Seeds of Contemplation
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Price: $15.95
Product ID : 7054
Manufacturer: Thomas Merton
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Description

New Seeds of Contemplation

Thomas Merton

First published in 1961, his book "was written in a kind of isolation," in which Merton was close to his own experience with the contemplative life (p. ix). Like WALDEN, such books can be written best only in solitude. In this book, you will experience the quiet writings of a Trappist monk, trying to work out his own salvation through contemplative prayer, desiring to find God, to see Him and to love Him as if it is the only thing that matters.

He writes, "contemplative prayer is a deep and simplified spiritual activity in which the mind and will rest in a unified and simple concentration upon God, turned to Him, intent upon Him and absorbed in His own light, with a simple gaze which is perfect adoration because it silently tells God that we have left everything else and desire even to leave our own selves for His sake, and that He alone is important to us, He alone is our desire and our life, and nothing else can give us any joy" (p. 243).

"Contemplation is the highest expression of man's intellectual and spiritual life," he writes. "It is that life itself, fully awake, fully alive, fully aware that it is alive. It is spiritual wonder" (p. 1).

Father Merton tells us that "every moment and every event of every man's life on earth plants something in his soul" (p. 14).

Pale dogwood flowers, for instance, and little yellow flowers that nobody notices by the side of the road "are saints looking up into the face of God." "The leaf has its own texture and its own pattern of veins and its own holy shape" (p. 30).

Working out our own salvation "demands close attention to reality at every moment, and great fidelity to God as He reveals Himself, obscurely, in the mystery of each new situation" (p. 32).

"Our vocation is not simply to be," Merton writes, "but to work together with God in the creation of our own life, our own identity, our own destiny" (p. 32).

This book offers us words to live by. "Do everything you can," he advises us, "to avoid the noise and the business of men. Keep as far away as you can from the places they gather to cheat and insult one another, to exploit one another, to laugh at one another, or to mock one another with their false gestures of friendship. Be glad if you can keep beyond the reach of their radios. Do not bother with their unearthly songs. Do not read their advertisements" (p. 84).

"If you have to live in a city and work among machines and ride in subways and eat in a place where the radio makes you deaf with spurious news and where the food destroys your life and the sentiments of those around you poison your heart with boredom, do not be impatient, but accept it as the love of God and as a seed of solitude planted in your soul" (pp. 86-7).

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