The Wisdom of the Desert: Sayings from the Desert Fathers of the Fourth Century

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New Directions Publishing, 1970 - Philosophy - 81 pages
49 Reviews
The personal tones of the translations, the blend of reverence and humor so characteristic of him, show how deeply Merton identified with the legendary authors of these sayings and parables, the fourth-century Christian Fathers who sought solitude and contemplation in the deserts of the Near East.

The hermits of Screte who turned their backs on a corrupt society remarkably like our own had much in common with the Zen masters of China and Japan, and Father Merton made his selection from them with an eye to the kind of impact produced by the Zen mondo.
 

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Review: The Wisdom of the Desert: Sayings from the Desert Fathers of the Fourth Century

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This is a collection of very short stories and sayings by the Christian hermits assembled by Thomas Merton for his own edification. You have an introduction by Merton and then about one story or ... Read full review

Review: The Wisdom of the Desert: Sayings from the Desert Fathers of the Fourth Century

User Review  - Goodreads

What a bunch of drivel. Total word acrobatics, with a few Biblical truths thrown in every now and then. Do not waste your time. The only interesting part of the book was Merton defending the life of ... Read full review

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About the author (1970)

Thomas Merton (1915-1968) entered the Cistercian Abbey of Gethsemani in Kentucky, following his conversion to Catholicism and was ordained Father M. Louis in 1949. During the 1960s, he was increasingly drawn into a dialogue between Eastern and Western religions and domestic issues of war and racism. In 1968, the Dalai Lama praised Merton for having a more profound knowledge of Buddhism than any other Christian he had known. Thomas Merton is the author of the beloved classic The Seven Storey Mountain.

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