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The Seven Storey Mountain by Thomas Merton

The Seven Storey Mountain (1948)

by Thomas Merton

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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A treasured spiritual story of the life of Thomas Merton, monk, mystic, and peace activist. This is the story of the famous journey Merton travelled to reach the path laid out by God. Told in his own words, no matter what your tradition or lack of it, this is an important work to read and study.
  cw2016 | Feb 28, 2017 |
I haven't read this in a while though i am reading his journals. What makes Merton so great is his descriptive language brings to life the scenes and times of his long and now legendary spiritual journey. This was one of his earlier works and his most famous though he did write many other books. I'm enjoying his descriptive style even more in [The Intimate Merton], Thomas Merton's Life from His Journals too. ( )
  Nathaniel_J_D | Jul 17, 2016 |
Merton's description of having seen a vision in which he "saw God" has many similarities to my own "satori." Another one of those books that one can read that opens a person up on many levels. Even if you're not a Christian, one can relate and find substantive advice on awakenings in the spiritual realms.

( )
  dbsovereign | Jan 26, 2016 |
he Seven Storey Mountain was written at the prompting of Thomas Merton's abbott (he was doing some other writings for the Trappist order)
It was published in 1948 and therefore did not include the last 20 years of his life.

I think it was designed to show simply his worldly beginnings and his road from secularism to Christ through contemplation.

After World War II and the Great Depression, people were ready for the simplicity of contemplative prayer.
They needed the hope and confidence that could be found in a spiritual approach to life.

Thomas Merton provided that.

"Clean, unselfish love does not live on what it gets but on what it gives.
It increases by pouring itself out for others, grows by self sacrifice and becomes mighty by throwing itself away." (Thomas Merton)
  pennsylady | Jan 22, 2016 |
Thomas Merton tells the tale of his life in this book. He was born into a not-especially devout Catholic home in France. He sought to fill the emptiness he felt inside himself with various things, including runs at Communism and intellectualism and youthful pleasure, but it was only after he stumbled into Catholicism and life at one of the most restrictive Catholic monasteries that he found great peace. ( )
  debnance | Jan 21, 2016 |
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» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Thomas Mertonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Avati, JamesCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Evelyn WaughIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Giroux, RobertIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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"For I tell you that God is able of these stones to raise up children to Abraham."


English Translation:
"for Christ, the true king"

from phrase:
Ad te ergo nunc mihi sermo dirigitur, quisquis abrenuntians propriis voluntatibus, Domino Christo vero Regi militaturus oboedientiæ fortissima atque præclara arma sumis.

To thee, therefore, my speech is now directed, who, giving up thine own will, takest up the strong and most excellent arms of obedience, to do battle for Christ the Lord, the true King.
First words
On the last day of January 1915, under the sign of the Water Bearer, in a year of a great war, and down in the shadow of some French mountains on the borders of Spain, I came into the world.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0156010860, Paperback)

In 1941, a brilliant, good-looking young man decided to give up a promising literary career in New York to enter a monastery in Kentucky, from where he proceeded to become one of the most influential writers of this century. Talk about losing your life in order to find it. Thomas Merton's first book, The Seven Storey Mountain, describes his early doubts, his conversion to a Catholic faith of extreme certainty, and his decision to take life vows as a Trappist. Although his conversionary piety sometimes falls into sticky-sweet abstractions, Merton's autobiographical reflections are mostly wise, humble, and concrete. The best reason to read The Seven Storey Mountain, however, may be the one Merton provided in his introduction to its Japanese translation: "I seek to speak to you, in some way, as your own self. Who can tell what this may mean? I myself do not know, but if you listen, things will be said that are perhaps not written in this book. And this will be due not to me but to the One who lives and speaks in both." --Michael Joseph Gross

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:39 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

This unique spiritual autobiography is the account of the growing restlessness of a brilliant and passionate young man whose search for peace and faith eventually leads him, at the age of twenty-six, to take vows in one of the most demanding religious orders - the Trappists. At the monastery, and within the "four walls of my new freedom," Merton wrote this extraordinary testament - a document of a man who withdrew from the world only after he had fully immersed himself in it. For this Fiftieth Anniversary Edition, Robert Giroux has written a memoir of how he came to publish The Seven Storey Mountain, and Merton's distinguished biographer, William H. Shannon, has supplied a note for the reader.… (more)

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