Merton wrote in August of 1965:
“My first obligation is to be myself and follow God’s grace, and not to allow myself to become captive to some idiot idea, whether of hermit life or anything else. What matters is not spirituality, not religion, not perfection, not success or failure at this or that, but simply God, and freedom in His Spirit. All the rest is pure stupidity. How often i saw this last year and before, just coming up for the afternoons- because then I was nonattached, nonidentified, and the hermitage was a kind of nowhere. Now the terrible thing is that it has become a very definte home. But since I am a homeless body, being tied to a home disturbs me. But I am sure with God’s grace this will all settle itself, and I can treat the place as any other hole in the wall that is “not mine.” Though I must admit that it is full of a lot of books and nonsense. Here is where I think fasting is important. Simplifying the meals I take here has already been quite a help.
I am impatient of all desires. May the Holy Spirit bring me to true freedom.”
be free. be simple. Journey…