The rush and pressure of modern life are a form, perhaps the most common form, of innate violence.

To allow oneself to be carried away by a multitude of conflicting concerns, to surrender to too many demands, to commit oneself to too many projects, to want to help everyone in everything is to succumb to violence.

More than that, it is cooperation with violence.

The frenzy of the activist neutralizes his work for peace.

It destroys her own inner capacity for peace.

It destroys the fruitfulness of his own work because it kills the root of inner wisdom which makes work fruitful.

Thomas Merton



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  • Hi Josh,
    This quote by Thomas Merton regarding “rushing through life as a form of violence” takes years to learn. At 77 I am beginning to see the necessity of slowing down to adapt a sense of being, feeling in touch with a sense of tranquility, rediscovering the why and how behind actions, evaluating the consequences of hasty behavior….on and on and on.
    Thank you,
    Fred Lipp

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