Friday, January 13, 2012


How's my mental health today?

I'm still deliberately taking a slower and quieter pace.

Part of this slower and quieter pace is noticeable in my reading.

I used to zip through books in a very short time. Not anymore - it's taking me considerably more time to read and absorb books - especially those that are far more than brain candy.

Among the books currently on my active reading list is Echoing Silence: Thomas Merton on the Vocation of Writing, edited by Robert Inchausti. The book consists of short excerpts from Merton's journals, poems, letters and books.

I am unable to tear through this book because I find I need to contemplate Merton's words on almost every page. Here's what I'm currently chewing on:

"The true solutions are not those which we force upon life in accordance with our theories, but those which life itself provides for those who dispose themselves to receive the truth. Consequently our task is to dissociate ourselves from all who have theories which promise clear-cut and infallible solutions, and to mistrust all such theories, not in a spirit of negativism and defeat, but rather trusting life itself, and nature, and if you will permit me, God above all. For since man has decided to occupy the place of God he has shown himself to be by far the blindest, and cruelest, and pettiest and most ridiculous of all the false gods. We can call ourselves innocent only if we refuse to forget this, and if we also do everything we can to make others realize it."

A challenging statement!

The depression I'm going through is hindering my ability to concentrate and absorb information, ideas, and concepts. That makes processing statements like the above more difficult and time-consuming.

Whose solutions and theories do I live by? Do I examine every theory and solution before deciding whether or not to accept it? Where do I start?

"If you would be a real seeker after truth, 
it is necessary that at least once in your life 
you doubt, as far as possible, all things."
- Rene Descartes

1 comment:

  1. I'm a slow reader all the time. Sometimes I find it frustrating because I want to read so many books and only have a finite amount of time. Evan once pointed out that it's ok to take time with books because maybe you will get more out of them and they will stick with you.

    I think that relates to the quote by Robert Inchausti you included. It's ok to meditate on things and really think them through, so that you can find the truth.