Thomas Merton Society of Canada

Thomas Merton Society of Canada events, please contact Judith Hardcastle, Program Director or Susan Cowan, Community Relations Director.

For more information:
604-988-8835 or email

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Vancouver School of Theology presents:

July 3-7, 2017: 9am-12pm
View outline (PDF)  

After introducing Merton’s life and thought, we shall survey the chronology and extent of his interest in Eastern religions. We will touch on Hinduism and Taoism, but our focus will be Buddhism, exploring what Merton did and did not know about its traditions and how it influenced his aesthetics, his prayer practice, and his poetry. We conclude with Merton’s principles of inter-religious dialogue and their relevance to own conversations with those who believe differently.

Students with no prior knowledge of Merton are advised to read Thomas Merton: Essential Writings (Christine M. Bochen, ed., Orbis Press, 2000) before the course. Those having no acquaintance with Buddhism might read Walpola Rahula’s What the Buddha Taught.

Bonnie Thurston’s Ph.D. is from the University of Virginia. Hers was an early doctoral dissertation on Thomas Merton. A university or seminary professor for many years, she has written or edited nineteen theological books. A founding member of the International Thomas Merton Society, she served as its third president, and received a “Louie” award for service to the Society. She has published extensively and given retreats and lectures on Merton in the U.S., Canada, the U.K. and Europe. She edited Merton And BuddhismHidden in the Same Mystery: Thomas Merton & Loretto (both with Fons Vitae) and Thomas Merton on Eastern Meditation (New Directions).

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Check out this new book of essays by Canadian writers

Merton Book

The Thomas Merton Society of Canada has just published a book of essays about this internationally acclaimed writer. The book is distinctive and original in that it represents the work of Canadian scholars, many of whom have significant publishing records of their own. These scholars, who have been publishing books and artticles over the years in North America and in the U.K., here offer varied and provocative views of Merton as contemplative, social critic, and poet. Merton is recognized as one of the most important religious thinkers of the last hundred years. The book which is entitled Thornas Merton: Monk on the Edge and which runs approximately 200 pages, is modestly priced at $25.00 (CDN).

Available from: Thomas Merton Societyof Canada
1044 St. George's Avenue
North Vancouver BC V7L 3H6