Prof. Sidney H Griffith, S.T.L., Ph.D., is an expert in Muslim-Christian relations and a lifelong reader of Thomas Merton. He is Professor of Semitic and Egyptian Languages and Literature at the Catholic University of America. He has a Ph.D. in Semitic Languages from the Catholic University of America and an M.S. in Library Sciences. In 2009, Prof. Griffith was awarded a Rumi Peace Award for his efforts in interfaith dialogue.
His book The Church in the Shadow of the Mosque: Muslims and Christians in the World of Islam (Princeton University Press, 2008) was awarded the Albert C. Outler Prize for the best book on ecumenical Church history by the American Society of Church History. He has published widely on Christian-Muslim relations, and his books include The Beginnings of Christian Theology in Arabic: Muslim-Christian Encounters in the Early Islamic Period (Ashgate, 2002) and The Bible in Arabic: The Scriptures of the ‘People of the Book’ in the Language of Islam (Princeton University Press, 2013). He is a member of the International Thomas Merton Society, where he has served as treasurer for several years. He has published several articles on Thomas Merton’s engagement with Islamic mysticism.
Thomas Merton was a Trappist monk and bestselling author of such beloved works as The Seven Storey Mountain and New Seeds of Contemplation. One of the 20th century’s great mystics, Merton was also a masterful teacher who delivered powerful conferences to the novice monks at the Abbey of Gethsemani. In these conferences, Merton’s thinking moved from cloistered monastic life to issues of social justice and interreligious understanding. A spiritual sage and guide for countless men and women, Merton struggled with complex questions about God’s existence and the role of organized religion.
Those who knew him also experienced his gifts as a homilist and teacher. These special, remastered recordings are part of his spoken word legacy. They are actual recordings of Thomas Merton. By agreement with The Thomas Merton Legacy Trust, Now You Know Media has the sole right to record, master, re-master, duplicate, market, and disseminate copies of “The Merton Recordings,” which are a selection of the archives housed in the Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine University in Louisville, Kentucky.