|Early winter, 1967 - photo by Ralph Eugene Meatyard|
"The poet and/or contemplative becomes herself a new word for God. In the act of challenge and suspension of the will, of the controlling ego, the life, the concrete identity of the poet and the contemplative, becomes itself Word, becomes itself a communication. It is God acting. Merton's own interest in the Eastern Christian tradition justifies some connections being made between this vision of the poet and the contemplative and the deep-rooted Eastern Christian idea that the 'logos' of each item in the universe is the utterance of the Logos of God in a particular and unique way. And I think back again to the letter to Mark van Doren: [God's] glory in me will be to receive from me something he can never receive from anyone else because it is a gift of his to me which he has never given to anyone else and never will.'
"We are to be 'new words for God' in that sense. And we celebrate Merton partly because of the belief, which I think most Christians share, that the lives of certain people will become, in a very particular sense, 'words for God." This life, this identity, this face, this voice, this 'tonality' of being, becomes a word from God to us, a word God addresses to us."
- Rowan Williams, A Silent Action - Engagements with Thomas Merton, p. 50