"practical" thinking men and women

From my good friend this morning, Thomas Merton, in his writing on "Promethean Theology," in one of his less well known works, New Man.

"The right thinking man is like the poor: we have him always with us.  He is the unbelieving believer: that is to say the religious man who lives, in practice, without a god.  He is the one who pretends to believe, who acts as if he believes, who seems to be moral because he has a set of rigid principles.  He clings to a certain number of fixed moral essences but at the same time he takes very good care never to ask himself whether or not they may be real.  He will rob you and enslave you and murder you and give you a plausible reason for doing so. He always has a reason, even though his reasons may cancel one another out by a series of contradictions.  That does not matter at all, since he does not need the truth, nor justice, nor mercy, least of all God: all he needs is "to be a right thinking man."

And yet, we are hopeful and ever determined.


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