Friday, March 18, 2011
From Thomas Merton's The Intimate Merton, selected journal writings:
"One of the results of all this could well be a complete and holy transparency: living, praying, and writing in the light of the Holy Spirit, losing myself entirely by becoming public property just as Jesus is public property in the Mass...my living of my Mass: to be come as plain as a Host in the hands of everybody."
"Now my whole life is this - to keep unencumbered. The wind owns the field where I walk, and I own nothing and am owned by nothing, and I shall never be forgotten because no one will every discover me."
"...we are all members one of another. It remains for us to recognize the mystery that your heart is my hermitage and that the only way I can enter into the desert is by bearing your burden and leaving you my own."
Merton's daily writing - all true, all contradictory. Seems clear that Merton had no more real opportunity for solitude and hermitage as a monk than I do as an artist and fulltime teacher. The world finds you wherever you are and you must deal with it. As he's saying, it IS being of the world, being in the world, being to the world, that is being a hermit - and our deserts keep reformulating themselves to fit the growth of our hearts, our souls.
"It is another spring. Although I am ruined, I am far better off than I have ever been in my life. My ruin is my fortune."
This week's rite was filmed by a student in my Video Improvisation Class at the American College Dance Festival at Keene College in New Hampshire. She told me this was the most interesting moment for her.