The following inclues Book Reviews of Thomas Merton's works, as well as that of friends closely identified with him. Please enjoy. If you have a book review you may mail it to me for inclusion here. My E-mail address is

This is the NUMBER 1 Read book of Thomas Merton's at this time. It is great ! (Dan)

WRITINGS ON NATURE...Thomas Merton...WHEN THE TREES SAY NOTHING,edited by Kathleen Deignan.

When I saw the title of this book, I knew I had to read it. In all my readings and observations over the years, no one influenced me more concerning seeing God, others, self and many other things in nature than Thomas Merton. Thomas Berry wrote in the foreward: "Merton's gift, eloquently captured by Kathleen Deignan, is this sense of the sacred throughout the entire range of the natural world." Kathleen Deignan writes in the introduction: "The mystery of Thomas Merton's marriage to the forest is a rich and overlooked sub-theme in one of the most celebrated spiritual stories of modern times."

Even though I grew up in a rural part of Alabama with nature everywhere, I used to say, "If you have seen one tree, you have seen them all." However, when I read Merton and noticed how often he seemed to see God in the trees and how he saw and heard rain as a festival, I started looking and listening in a different way. Merton once wrote,"The rain ceases, and the bird's clear song suddenly announces the difference between Heaven and Hell."

This book by Kathleen Deignan is divided into subjects like: Seasons, Elements, Firmament, Creatures, Festivals, Presences, etc...In my opinion, this is certainly an excellent book that reflects so much on the spirit of Thomas Merton. And, this is an excellent book for devotional times. Sister Kathleen has done us a great service in doing this book. (Wayne Burns)


GOD of Pilgrims,
Give us always a table to Stop at
where we can Tell our story
and Sing our song.

by Father John Giuliani The Benedictine Grange West Redding, Connecticut

A couple of weeks ago at the International Thomas Merton Society meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia, I did a brief interview with Kathleen Deignan. Kathleen is a nun, a professor of religious studies at Iona College in New Rochelle, New York, and an able musician and spiritual leader.

She has recently completed a best-selling book titled, WHEN THE TREES SAY NOTHING, a compilation of nature sayings of Thomas Merton. When I asked her about the inspiration for the book she described a priest who had been influential in her life for over twenty years. The priest was somewhat of an artist and continually inspired her to continue her desire to write a book of meditations with the writings of Thomas Merton.

But, difficulties arose. She could not get permissions to use the writings needed for the project. The project slipped for an extended length of time until finally she succeeded in getting the permissions needed. The result is that today it is a best-selling book. This morning, I found myself reading a favorite book, 100 Graces:Mealtime Blessings, a list of mealtime blessings which I keep on my dining table. The book includes selections of table prayers by Marcia and Jack Kelly. Together they visited numerous religious places in the world and collected these prayers which bless me daily. I might also add that Marcia Kelly is the niece of Robert Lax, Thomas Merton's best friend in college, and one of the reasons I visited Patmos in Greece last summer.

Anyway, this mornings table graces (above) really blessed my life. A place where we can tell our story and sing our song.Certainly, a place of great honor for each of us should we find such a place, right? But of more interest to me than the blessing was the writer of it, Father John Giulani, the same Father John Giulani who encouraged Kathleen Deignan to write WHEN THE TREES SAY NOTHING. How many people do we meet who encourage us to Tell our Story and Sing our song? You think about that !! (

Brother Dan <>

MINI-REVIEW OF DIALOGUES WITH SILENCE. PRAYERS AND DRAWINGS BY THOMAS MERTON, edited and compiled by Jonathan Montaldo. 189 pages. Reviewed by Dan K. Phillips

Excellent new devotional material comprised of Merton drawings and appropriate prayers to go along with them. I use this daily in my daily devotions. Montaldo understands Merton's heart! His selections are comforting, guidance oriented, and just plain inspirational. The book is a surprise with its simplicity and wisdom, combined in a small place.

MINI-REVIEW OF THE INTIMATE MERTON: His Life from His Journals, edited by Patrick Hart and Jonathan Montaldo, 1999.

In THE INTIMATE MERTON, the authors do an outstanding job in connecting important events in the life and writings of Merton through his journals. Ever since I read the first Merton journal, I have been amazed at how he detailed his search for God and community as a Monk. If you have not read the journals, THE INTIMATE MERTON will move you in that direction. As Merton wrote, "My best writing has always been in journals." (Wayne Burns!!!) This is a must have book. BUY IT TODAY !!

WALKING WITH THOMAS MERTON by Robert Waldron, Paulist Press, 116 pages

Robert Waldron has done it again. He has given us another readable and energetic Thomas Merton experience. Using his preparation for a day long Thomas Merton Retreat at the Dominican Prior in Dover, Massachusetts, as a backdrop, his explorations of Merton's life during a summer sabbatical takes him through Merton's Journals and poetry. His retreat goal is to "point my finger toward Merton and to lead them toward a deeper understanding of his life and in particular his verse." Re-reading Seven Storey Mountain, he senses Merton's continuing influence on his life. An excellent work. Worth carrying with you !!

Waldron has also recently released BLUEHOPE, a novel with a monastery as a background and with hints of a poet named Ethan Seegard really being Merton. Its monastery ring is appealing but the Seegard--Merton similarities are too much for me to get carried away.


A book about Robert Lax titled,"THE WAY OF THE DREAMCATCHER," by Steve T. Georgiou, has been published. It is one of the best books I have read in years. It is about a chance meeting between Steve T. Georgiou and Robert Lax in Patmos, Greece. For a full review click here. The Way of the Dreamcatcher!!

Best Sellers

The Seven Storey Mountain

Thomas Merton's best-selling autobiography. Cost $12 paperback edition.

Need Seeds of Contemplation

Early journal of Mertons. Cost $8.76 paperback edition.


Great work of Merton on prayer. My copy even has an autography by Douglas Steere who wrote an introduction for the first one. Cost $7.16 paperback edition.

The Ascent to Truth

Usually ships in 24 hours Thomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1989, Price: $9.60

The Asian Journal of Thomas Merton

Ships in 24 hours. Thomas Merton/ Paperback / Published 1988 - Our Price: $12.76 ~ You Save: $3.19 (20%)

At Home in the World : The Letters of Thomas Merton and Rosemary Radford Ruether

Ships in 2-3 days. Thomas Merton/ Paperback / Published 1995 Our Price: $10.40 ~ You Save: $2.60 (20%)

Bread in the Wilderness

~ Usually ships in 24 hours, Merton, Thomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1993. Our Price: $6.36 ~ You Save: $1.59 (20%)

The Collected Poems of Thomas Merton

~ Usually ships in 24 hoursThomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1987 Our Price: $23.96 ~ You Save: $5.99 (20%)

Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander : Introduction by Thomas Moore

Usually ships in 24 hours, Thomas Merton, Thomas Moore (Designer) / Paperback / Published 1968. This includes the famous 4th and Walnut Statement.. Our Price: $10.40 ~ You Save: $2.60 (20%)

Contemplation in a World of Action (Gethsemani Studies in Psychological and Religious Anthropology)

~ Usually ships in 24 hours. Thomas Merton, Robert Coles (Introduction) / Paperback / Published 1999. Our Price: $14.00

The Courage for Truth : The Letters of Thomas Merton to Writers

Usually ships in 2-3 days. Thomas Merton, Christine M. Bochen (Editor) / Hardcover / Published 1993. Our Price: $25.00

Dancing in the Water of Life : Seeking Peace in the Hermitage (Journals of Thomas Merton, Vol 5)

~ Usually ships in 24 hours. Thomas Merton, Robert E. Daggy (Editor) / Hardcover / Published 1997. Our Price: $21.00 ~ You Save: $9.00 (30%)

Disputed Questions<.a>

~ Usually ships in 2-3 daysThomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1985. Our Price: $8.80 ~ You Save: $2.20 (20%)

Follow the Ecstasy : The Hermitage Years of Thomas Merton

~Usually ships in 24 hours. John Howard Griffin, Robert Bonazzi (Editor) / Paperback / Published 1993. Our Price: $11.20 ~ You Save: $2.80 (20%)

Gandhi on Non-Violence

~ Usually ships in 2-3 days. Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi, Thomas Merton (Editor) / Paperback /Published 1965. Our Price: $4.76 ~ You Save: $1.19 (20%)
Geography of Lograire
~ Usually ships in 2-3 daysThomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1969. Our Price: $7.95

The Hidden Ground of Love : The Letters of Thomas Merton on Religious Experience and Social Concerns

~ Usually ships in 24 hours. William H. Shannon(Designer), Thomas Merton / Paperback / Published1993. Our Price: $14.36 ~ You Save: $3.59 (20%)

The Last of the Fathers

~ Usually ships in 24 hours. Thomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1982. Our Price: $6.40 ~ You Save: $1.60 (20%)

Life and Holiness

~ Usually ships in 24 hours. Thomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1969. Our Price: $7.16 ~ You Save: $1.79 (20%)

The Literary Essays of Thomas Merton (New Directions Paperback

~ Usually ships in 2-3 days Thomas Merton, Patrick Hart (Editor) / Paperback / Published 1985. Our Price: $15.16 ~ You Save: $3.79 (20%)

The Living Bread

Merton's views on the Eucharist. ~ Usually ships in 2-3 days.Thomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1980.Our Price: $12.00 ~ You Save: $3.00 (20%)

Living With Wisdom : A Life of Thomas Merton

~Usually ships in 24 hours.James H. Forest, Jim Forest / Paperback / Published 1991Our Price: $12.00 ~ You Save: $3.00 (20%)

Love and Living

~ Usually ships in 24 hours.Thomas Merton, et al / Paperback / Published 1985. Our Price: $8.80 ~ You Save: $2.20 (20%)

Merton : A Biography

This is one of my favorites.Monica Furlong / Paperback / Published 1995. Our Price: $13.56 ~ You Save: $3.39 (20%)

Merton's Palace of Nowhere

~ Usually ships in 24 hours. James Finley, Henri J. M. Nouwen (Designer) / Paperback / Published 1980. Our Price: $7.16 ~ You Save: $1.79 (20%)

Mornings With Thomas Merton : Readings and Reflections

This is one of Wayne Burns favorites. Its where he gets much of his Mornings with Merton. Thomas Merton, John C. Blattner (Editor) / Hardcover / Published 1998. Our Price: $11.19 ~ You Save: $4.80 (30%)

My Argument With the Gestapo

Usually ships in 2-3 daysThomas Merton, Naomi Burton (Designer) / Paperback / Published 1975. Our Price: $10.95

Mystics and Zen Masters

~ Usually ships in 24 hours. Thomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1986. Our Price: $11.20 ~ You Save: $2.80 (20%)

New Man

~ Usually ships in 24 hours. Thomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1978. Our Price: $9.60 ~ You Save: $2.40 (20%)

New Seeds of Contemplation

~ Usually ships in 24 hours.Thomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1974. Our Price: $8.76 ~ You Save: $2.19 (20%)

No Man Is an Island (A Harvest/Hbj Book)

~ Usually ships in 24 hours. Thomas Merton / Paperback / Published 1978. Our Price: $8.80 ~ You Save: $2.20 (20%)


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