Sunday, January 31, 2016

Thomas Merton's Prayer

"My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going.
 I do not see the road ahead of me.
 I cannot know for certain where it will end.
 Nor do I really know myself,
 and the fact that I think that I am following your will
    does not mean that I am actually doing so. 
 But I believe that the desire to please you 
    does in fact please you.
 And I hope I have that desire
    in all that I am doing.
 I hope that I will never do anything
    apart from that desire.
 And I know that if I do this
    you will lead me by the right road,
    though I may know nothing about it.
 Therefore will I trust you always,
    though I may seem to be lost
    and in the shadow of death.
 I will not fear, for you are ever with me,
 and you will never leave me to face my perils alone."
 - Thomas Merton.

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

The Unbearable God

"A god whom we can easily bear, a god from whom we do not have to
hide, a god whom we do not hate in moments, a god whose destruction
we never desire, is not God at all, and has no reality." - Paul Tillich, from "The Shaking of the Foundations", ch. 6:  "The Escape From God".

Politics: The Post-Modern Religion

“The basis of a genuine heternonomy is the claim to speak in the name of the ground of being and therefore in an unconditional and ultimate way. A heteronomous authority usually expresses itself in terms of myth and cult because these are the direct and intentional expressions of the depth of reason. It is also possible for nonmythical and nonritual forms to gain power over the mind (e.g. political ideas). Heteronomy in this sense is usually a reaction against an autonomy which has lost its depth and has become empty and powerless.” – Paul Tillich, “Systematic Theology Vol. 1”; pp. 84,85.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

The Past

"Life could not continue without throwing the past into the past, liberating the present from its burden." - Paul Tillich, from "The Eternal Now".

Miracles and Nature

"Miracles cannot be interpreted in terms of a supranatural interference in natural processes.  If such an interpretation were true, the manifestation of the ground of being would destroy the structure of being; God would be split within himself, as religious dualism has asserted.  It would be more adequate to call such a miracle "demonic," not because it is produced by "demons," but because it discloses a "structure of destruction".  It corresponds with the state of "being possessed" in the mind and could be called "sorcery."   The supranaturalistic theory of miracles makes God a sorcerer and a cause of "possession"; it confuses God with demonic structures in the mind and reality. - Paul Tillich, "Systematic Theology Vol. 1", p.116.

Friday, January 1, 2016


"It is a terrifying thing to have been born: I mean, to find oneself, without having willed it, swept irrevocably along on a torrent of fearful energy which seems as though it wished to destroy everything it carries with it." - Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, from "Hymn of the Universe".