Having embraced a life of solitude in his own hermitage, Thomas Merton finds his faith tested beyond his imagination when a visit to the hospital leads to a clandestine affair of the heart Jolted out of his comfortable routine, Merton is forced to reassess his need for love and his commitment to celibacy and the monastic vocation This astonishing volume traces Mertons struggle to reconcile his unexpected love with his sacred vows while continuing to grapple with the burning social issues of the dayincluding racial conflicts, the war in Vietnam, and the Arab Israeli conflictvisiting and corresponding with high profile friends like Thich Nhat Hanh and Joan Baez, and further developing his writing career Revealing Merton to be very human in his chronicles of the ecstasy and torment of being in love, Learning to Love comes full circle as Merton recommits himself completely anddeeply to his vocation even as he recognizes my need for love, my loneliness, my inner division, the struggle in which solitude is at once a problem and a solution And perhaps not a perfect solution eitherMay,