Friday, August 12, 2011

A Year With Thomas Merton - August 12

Loving the World

I have finished reading the proofs of the Divine Milieu by Père Teilhard de Chardin which were sent to me by Harpers.

Certainly the world is to be loved, as he says it. For God loved the world and sent His Son into the world to save it.

Here the world means the cosmos, and all is centered on God. All seek Him.

Christianity should make us “more visibly human”—passionately concerned with all the good, that is, that wants to grow in the world and that cannot grow without our concern.

The stoic indifference cultivated by a certain type of Christian spirituality is then a diabolical temptation and an emptying of pity, of charity, of interest. A hardening of the heart, a regression and an isolation.

His concern is admirable. And his indignation that “Christians no longer expect anything.” It is true. Nothing great. But we expect everything trivial.

Our indifference to the real values in the world justifies our petty attraction to its false values. When we forget the Parousia and the Kingdom of God in the world, we can, we think, safely be businessmen and make money. Those who love the world in the wrong sense love it for themselves, exploit it for themselves. Those who truly love it develop it, work in it for God, that God may reveal Himself in it.

August 26, 1960, IV.36-37

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