Saturday, November 12, 2011

A Year With Thomas Merton - November 12

The Coming Kingdom

Have mercy on our blindness and our poverty.

Our inability to grasp the infinite riches of God's mercy and His Kingdom. Immense sorrow for those who seek to alleviate man's misery by an earthly parody of the Kingdom. The vicious lie of communist messianism, which can still appeal to the hearts of so many great men. Pablo Neruda--wonderful poet--his faith in that lie breaks my heart. He and his poetry will, of course, be destroyed by what he has chosen to serve, for there is really in him nothing in common with Stalinism.

Inability above all of Christians, of priests, to realize the objective immensity and power of the Kingdom that is established, in mystery, and of the great unknown liturgy that goes up to God from the darkness of the world in which the Kingdom is denied. Its citizens perhaps do not even know for sure of what Kingdom they are citizens, yet they suffer for God, and the Word triumphs in them, and through them man will once again be, in Christ, the perfect ikon of God. (Man is, already, in Christ, that ikon, but even we, who should know it best and be overwhelmed by it, are constantly forgetting."

Subjective faith, personal spontaneity, ascetic goodwill, devotion to duty--these are not enough. Yet they, too, are necessary. But they are only the beginning.

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