“Thomas Merton (1915-1968) was a writer and Trappist monk at Our Lady of Gethsemani Abbey in Kentucky. His writings include such classics as The Seven Storey Mountain, New Seeds of Contemplation, and Zen and the Birds of Appetite. Merton is the author of more than seventy books that include poetry, personal journals, collections of letters, social criticism, and writings on peace, justice, and ecumenism.” – from the Thomas Merton Center website. http://merton.org/
Merton lived the last part of his life as a Monk of Our Lady of Gethsemane. See a biography of Merton as well as other information about Our Lady of Gethsemane at http://www.monks.org/thomasmerton.html
Find out more about the Trappist order to which Merton belonged at http://www.trappists.org/
There is a Thomas Merton Society of Canada at http://www.merton.ca/index.html
Perhaps Merton’s most famous prayer …
My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it. Therefore will I trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.
Thomas Merton, Thoughts In Solitude