Monday, July 30, 2007

A quick quote on Pater Tom and restlessness

Pater Tom
I don't want to flog (or blog) a dead horse, but I re-read a bit this morning from Br. Patrick Hart's and Jonathan Montaldo's introduction to The Intimate Merton: His Life from His Journals. This introduction bears the title A Path Through Thomas Merton's Journals. Of course it is too hagiographic and laudatory, especially for a man who said about the Merton Room in the library of Bellarmine College in Louisville, Kentucky that it was "a good place to cut a fart and run". However, the tone of their introduction is tempered by their paying attention to what Pater Tom wrote about himself, which was genuinely self-effacing and often ironic.

"His journals bear witness to his education as a human being. He gradually abandoned hope for a suddenly perfect life in some perfect place always elsewhere than where he actually was. He surrendered himself instead to the slow heart work of seeking God one day and one night at a time in the place where his eyes opened and shut every morning and evening. He got up and fell down, he got up and fell down, he got up over and over again."

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