The Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine University

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Author QuotedAlbert Einstein
Title QuotedIdeas and Opinions
Date (Year/Month/Day)1957/12/17
Imprint[S.l.] : [s.n.]. 1954
QuotationHere, however, is a paragraph which I can and ought to make my own: "My passionate sense of social justice and social responsibility has always contrasted oddly with my pronounced lack of need for direct contact with other human beings and human communities. I am truly a ‘lone traveller' and have never belonged to my country, my house, my friends, or even my immediate family with my whole heart; in the face of these ties I have never lost a sense of distance and need for solitude - feelings which increase with the years. One becomes sharply aware, but without regret, of the limits of mutual understanding and consonance with other people. No doubt such a person loses some of his innocence and unconcern; on the other hand he is largely independent of the opinions, habits, and judgments of his fellows and avoids the temptations to build his inner equilibrium on such insecure foundations." (Ideas and Opinions, p. 9)
JournalA Search for Solitude: Pursuing the Monk's True Life. The Journals of Thomas Merton, Volume 3, 1952-1960.; Edited by Lawrence S. Cunningham. / San Francisco : Harper Collins. 1996, p. 146-47
Link to Merton's Copy