W.L. Lyons Brown Library
Thomas Merton Center
Seeds of Hope:
Thomas Merton’s Contemplative Message
Edited by Fernando Beltrán Llavador and Paul M. Pearson.
The first International Thomas Merton Conference in Spain was held in Ávila between the 27th and 29th of October 2006, with over 350 participants from 19 countries.
Thomas Merton was convinced that for any radical social, cultural, political, human change to be real and truly effective in the long run, it has to be spiritual. Merton’s vision of hope, succinctly summed up in The Thomas Merton Encyclopedia, provided the focus of the Conference and serves as the best introduction to this book:
Christianity, according to Thomas Merton, is preeminently “a religion of hope,” founded on the belief that human beings are created in the image and likeness of God and that divine mercy and goodness are more powerful than human evil (Monastic Journey, 52). The basis for Christian hope, then, is God’s love and acceptance, as revealed in the cross of Christ (Thoughts in Solitude, 38-39), and in the new life bestowed by “the great feast of Christian hope: the Resurrection” (Road to Joy, 99). Merton emphasizes both that hope has a transcendent dimension, pointing toward the ultimate fulfillment of the world to come (Thoughts in Solitude, 38), the eschatological kingdom (Seasons of Celebration, 60), and that it has profound effects on the way one’s life is lived here and now. The “problem of hope,” Merton writes, is “to establish a right relationship between the past and the future, which give spiritual solidity to the present” (Search for Solitude, 354).
Copies are available from the Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine University for a minimum donation of $25, including postage and packing. Check, in US Dollars only, should be made payable to the Merton Center Restricted Fund and sent to:
Dr Paul M Pearson.
Thomas Merton Center,
2001 Newburg Road,
Louisville. KY. 40205.
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