#AdventWord #Wisdom

The fields, rain, sun, sky, mud, clay, wind, and fire are all masters of sacred wisdom, and worthy subjects of contemplation. –Kathleen Deignan Deignan makes the above statement in the introduction to When the Trees Say Nothing, a collection of Thomas Merton’s writing on nature that she edited. Merton’s desire for greater solitude led his Abbott to make him “forester,” which entailed restoration of the woods near the monastery. This work, in turn, led Merton to become a competent naturalist and transformed his experience of solitude from that of “privacy for intellectual pursuits” into “an opportunity for embodied engagement with…

#AdventWord #Rejoice

Like gratitude, like forgiveness, like so many of our finest human moments, rejoicing is a choice we make. Yes, sometimes it feels totally like an automatic response to something that makes us happy, that gladdens our hearts. Other times, we must look about us, seeking to discern what–in our challenging world of pandemic, political division, economic hardship–is cause for rejoicing. And if we look intently, open to all possibility, we will find it. And then we can pass it on…