Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Year With Thomas Merton - May 25

Hang On To The Clear Light!

In our monasteries we have been content to find our ways to a kind of peace, a simple, undisturbed, thoughtful life. And this is certainly good, but is it good enough?

I, for one, realize that now I need more. Not simply to be quiet, somewhat productive, to pray, to read, to cultivate leisure—otium sanctum—a holy leisure. There is a need for effort, deepening, change and transformation. Not that I must undertake a special project of self-transformation or that I must “work on myself.” In that regard, it would be better to forget it. Just to go for walks, live in peace, let change come quietly and invisibly on the inside.

But I do have a past to break with, an accumulation of inertia, waste, wrong, foolishness, rot, junk, a great need of clarification, of mindfulness, or rather of no mind—a return to genuine practice, right effort, need to push on to the great doubt. Need for the spirit.

Hang on to the clear light!

May 30, 1968, VII.113

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