Friday, July 27, 2012

Spending the Day With Thomas

Some weeks are formed more by activities and others by conversations.  This past week my thoughts have been focused on the quotes by one man.  At a graduation ceremony, I heard a quote by Thomas Merton which took me to the internet to read more about the man and find more of his wise statements.  Here are five which struck me:

1.  “To be grateful is to recognize the Love of God in everything He has given us - and He has given us everything. Every breath we draw is a gift of His love, every moment of existence is a grace, for it brings with it immense graces from Him.

Gratitude therefore takes nothing for granted, is never unresponsive, is constantly awakening to new wonder and to praise of the goodness of God. For the grateful person knows that God is good, not by hearsay but by experience. And that is what makes all the difference.”

― Thomas Merton

2.  “To allow oneself to be carried away by a multitude of conflicting concerns, to surrender to too many demands, to commit oneself to too many projects, to want to help everyone in everything, is to succumb to the violence of our times.”

― Thomas Merton

3.  “We live in a society whose whole policy is to excite every nerve in the human body and keep it at the highest pitch of artificial tension, to strain every human desire to the limit and to create as many new desires and synthetic passions as possible, in order to cater to them with the products of our factories and printing presses and movie studios and all the rest.”

― Thomas Merton, The Seven Storey Mountain

4.  "Advertising treats all products with the reverence and the seriousness due to sacraments."

― Thomas Merton

5.  "Be good, keep your feet dry, your eyes open, your heart at peace and your soul in the joy of Christ."

― Thomas Merton

If you want to know more about Merton, you can read this biography on Wikipedia.

I realize that this is an unusual way for me to write about my week for Friday Fave Five, but I just wanted to share.  Thanks to Susanne for hosting FFF.


ellen b. said...

I really find quote #3 to be very interesting in light of our time...

roxie said...

Yes. I give this a great big,loud AMEN! The attitude of gratitude is spiritual spinach to the anemic soul.

Sara at Come Away With Me said...

Thomas Merton is really something and I love his book 'No Man is an Island.' In fact, it's about time I dug that out again; it's been several years since I first discovered him. Thank you for the reminder. His autobiography was not my favorite but interesting nonetheless.

Faith said...

I don't think I've ever read anything by this man although I've heard of No Man is an Island. I especially LOVE quotes 1 and 5 here. I am convinced that we need to be living in an attitude of gratitude. Even in the small things. Thanks for sharing this as your FFF...i LOVED it!

Susanne said...

All of the quotes are really good but the first one really hit me. Thanks for sharing them.

Bethany said...

I've always wanted to read Thomas Merton's books... your collection of quotes was a good introduction to his thoughts. I've been thinking a lot lately about the idea that man has an innate drive to obtain more and do more. I think his quotes describe accurately what happens when this is out of balance in #3!