THE SILENT LIFE by THOMAS MERTON
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Printed 1957 by The Abbey of Our Lady of Gethsemani (Trappist KY).
Ex Parte Ordinis: “Nihil Obstat” and “Imprimatur” credits (“official declarations that a book or pamphlet is free of doctrinal or moral error”).
Jacket photo by Benedikt Rast, at cloister of the Cisterian Abbey of Hauterive, Fribourg, Switzerland.
This unique volume from Thomas Merton seeks to offer a comprehensive introduction to the monastic life in English, for what was the first time. At this time, this book gave attention to a growing sense of need - another product of the mid-twentieth century in America - for the sanctity of "transcendent and spiritual freedom." As a reference to the monastic tradition, Merton explores topics from Gregorian chants to the legacies of specific hermitages, with a selection of relevent documentary photographs from established churches and institutions that have critically shaped the kind of monk ontology sketched by Merton's enterprise.