Merton's Move from the Cenobitic to the Eremitic
In his forties, driven by a quest for inner purification, Thomas Merton begins to move away from the cenobitical to the eremitical, from the communal life to the life of the hermit.
Journal (III, 346): "I really want to live alone in simplicity and devote myself to thought and prayer." "Renounce all comfort, the reputation, the security, the American friendships which bind me here...." "To cease to be famous and let myself be forgotten, very gladly." "Break useless contacts."