The Mysticism of Thomas Merton

“Love is our true destiny. We do not find the meaning of life by ourselves alone — we find it with another.”

Michael Snellen
I AM Catholic

--

Bryan Sherwood, Wikimedia Commons

Firstly, it is important to establish that Fr. Louis (Thomas Merton) truly understood what Christian mysticism was. Contemplative prayer, according to Merton, is prayer “centered entirely on the presence of God.”

Saying again, elsewhere, “Love is our true destiny. We do not find the meaning of life by ourselves alone — we find it with another.” During his early years as a monk, he remarked: “I must above all things avoid playing the “know myself” game, because if I do it will surely mean losing what little I can find of a path to God.” (Run to the Mountain).

Compared to the false mysticism of today that never goes beyond the self, Merton sought God.

“There is no such thing as a kind of prayer in which you do absolutely nothing. If you are doing nothing you are not praying. On the other hand, if God is the source of your interior activity, the work of your faculties may be entirely beyond conscious estimation, and its results may not be seen or understood. Contemplative prayer is a deep and simplified spiritual activity in which the mind and will rest in a unified and simple concentration upon God, turned to Him, intent upon Him and…

--

--