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  • Eleventh General Meeting of the International Thomas Merton SocietyNazareth College, Rochester, New York, USA, 11–14 June 2009
  • Christine Bochen

The Eleventh General Meeting of the International Thomas Merton Society was held 11–14 June 2009 at Nazareth College, Rochester, New York. The theme, “Bearing Witness to the Light: Merton’s Challenge to a Fragmented World,” invited presenters and participants to explore ways in which Thomas Merton serves as a model of creative interreligious dialogue and witnesses to its importance in building a world in which the dignity of every person is respected and nurtured.

General session speakers explored Buddhist, Christian, Muslim, and Hindu dimensions of Merton’s life and writings. They included Judith Simmer-Brown; James Connor, OCSO; Herbert Mason; and Rachel Fell McDermott. In addition to Judith Simmer-Brown’s presentation, “Profile of a Trappist Yogi: A Tibetan Buddhist Perspective,” and Rachel Fell McDermott’s presentation, “Why Zen Buddhism and Not Hinduism? The Asias of Thomas Merton’s Voyage East,” concurrent sessions focused on Merton and Buddhism, Merton and Zen Buddhism, and Merton and Thich Nhat Hanh.

An exhibit of Merton’s photographs, “A Hidden Wholeness: The Zen Photography of Thomas Merton,” on loan from the Thomas Merton Center and Archives at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky, was on display during the meeting and through the summer in the Nazareth College library. [End Page 195]

Christine Bochen
Nazareth College