by the Rev. Charlie Dupree

Thomas Merton lived as a monk at the Abby of Gethsemani from 1941 until his death in 1968. This particular Abby is nestled deep in the hills of central Kentucky. It is a monastery of the Order of the Cistercians of the Strict Observance (OCSO), known commonly as the Trappists. This particular “brand” of monasticism is known for its embrace of silence. What’s the value of silence? As one monk puts it, “Silence enables interior communion with the Lord.” Or, as I like to say, silence allows us to notice what’s happening within us and around us.

I wonder how many hours Thomas Merton spent in silence. Here’s a quote . . .

“When we are alone on a starlit night, when by chance we see the migrating birds in autumn descending on a grove of junipers to rest and eat; when we see children in a moment when they are really children, when we know love in our own hearts; or when, like the Japanese poet, Basho, we hear an old frog land in a quiet pond with a solitary splash – at such times the awakening, the turning inside out of all values, the “newness,” the emptiness and the purity of vision that make themselves evident, all these provide a glimpse of the cosmic dance.”

― Thomas Merton

What provides you with a glimpse of the cosmic dance?

See you in church,

Charlie+ (he/him)