Thomas Merton (1915-1968).

The mystic, that is to say the contemplative, not only sees and touches what is real, but beyond the surface of all that is actual, he attains to communion with the Freedom Who is the source of all actuality. This Reality, the Freedom, is not concept, not a thing, not an object, not even an object of knowledge; it is the Living God, the Holy One, the One to Whom we dare to utter a name only because he has revealed a Name to us, but Who is beyond all Names as He is beyond all Being, beyond all knowing, beyond all loving. He is the infinitely Other, the Transcendent, of Whom we have and can have no univocal idea. He is so far above being that it is in some sense truer to say of Him that He "is not" than that He is. Yet at the same time we best name Him Who is the fulness of life by saying that He IS. And He Who IS (...) dwells at the very heart of our own being. The pure summit of our own actuality is the threshold of His Sanctuary, and He is nearer to us than we are to ourselves. The New Man, P.15.

To be one with One Whom one cannot see is to be hidden, to be nowhere, to be no one: it is to be unknown as He is unknown, forgotten as He is forgotten, lost as He is lost to the work which nevertheless exists in Him. Yet to live in Him is to live by His power, to reach from end to end of the universe in the might of His wisdom, to rule and form all things in and with
Him.  It is to be the hidden instrument of His Divine action, the minister of His redemption, the channel of His mercy, and the messenger of His infinite Love. Merton, Thomas. The Silent Life.P.vii. Submitted to L-Center Discussion Group by Gary Horn  <>

Last updated: 2001/02/21