Thomas Merton

CLICK HERE to read a great review of the man Thomas Merton.

In our post-9/11 world, with religion seen as a sinister force sundering all efforts at harmony and peace, when a full assault on people of faith is seen as a prerequisite to being taken seriously for membership in the chattering classes and when religion is judged a threat to personal and social well being, the public value of an intellectual like Merton should not be underestimated. We need such spiritual questers if for no other reason than they lend credibility to the role of faith in the life of both individuals and of the global community. Such spiritual leaders as Merton, Henri Nouwen, Jean Vanier and Donald Nicholl do more than add lustre to the term spirituality. They embody the integrity of those who struggle, and yes I mean struggle, into holiness.

Merton was no plaster saint. Because of his candour and prolixity we know perhaps more than we need to know about his dramatic wrestling with God, his own woundedness and his searing emotional loneliness. But precisely because of this honesty we are shown a way to integration, a way we neglect at our peril.

Extract taken from article by Michael Higgins at


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