Paradox of peace

I got this quote in today’s mail from the Merton Institute and it really resonated for me. The second sentence here is right on target.

Paradoxically, I have found peace because I have always been dissatisfied. My moments of depression and despair turn out to be renewals, new beginnings. If I were once to settle down and be satisfied with the surface of life, with its divisions and its clichés, it would be time to call in the undertaker. …So, then, this dissatisfaction which sometimes used to worry me and has certainly, I know, worried others, has helped me in fact to move freely and even gaily with the stream of life. My unspoken (or spoken) protests have kept me from clinging to what was already done with. When a thought is done, let go of it. When something has been written, publish it, and go on to something else. You may say the same thing again someday, on a deeper level. No one needs to have a compulsion to be utterly and perfectly “original” in every word he writes.

Thomas Merton. A Thomas Merton Reader. Thomas P. McDonnel, editor. New York: Doubleday, Inc., 1962:16

3 Replies to “Paradox of peace”

  1. When I read it, I immediately thought of you.
    I could also identify with it as a writer.
    I hope peace finds you today.

  2. I am on a short trip with family to the New Jersey coast today. Peace has found me lately and in the most unusual places. I felt very much at peace at Great Lakes last week. I felt as though I had come home. I even fell asleep under a tree next to the “grinder” I graduated from. It was a beautiful day and a beautiful memory. Thanks for your continued encouragement. I hope peace finds you today too. 🙂 don

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