The Deacon's Bench

Good old Patrick McNamara remembered, and posted on the happy fact that today is Thomas Merton’s birthday:

Today marks the birth of Thomas Merton, who writes at the beginning of his autobiography, The Seven Storey Mountain:
“On the last day of January 1915, under the sign of the Water Bearer, in a year of a great war, and down in the shadow of some French mountains on the borders of Spain, I came into the world.”

His original opening line was supposed to be this:

“When a man is conceived, when a human being comes into nature as an individual, concrete, subsisting thing, a life, a person, then Gods image is minted into the world. A free, vital, self-moving entity, a spirit informing flesh, a complex of energies ready to be set into fruitful motion begins to flame with potential light and understanding and virtue, begins to flame with love, without which no spirit can exist. It is ready to realize no one knows what grandeurs. The vital center of this new creation is a free and spiritual principle they call a soul. The soul is the life of this being, and the life of the soul is the love that unites it to the principle of all life—God. The body that here has been made will not live forever. When the soul, the life, leaves it, it will be dead…”

Check out McNamara’s Blog to find out what happened to that original opening.

Meantime, Happy 94th, Fr. Louis.

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