Thomas Merton and the New World: God’s Messenger on the Road

By Paul R. Dekar

A demonstration of how prophetic and transferable Thomas Merton’s teaching remain in order to find unity in our creation of the image of God.

ISBN: 9780718896850


‘Merton still matters’, writes Paul R. Dekar about Cistercian monk Thomas Merton. Calling people to act justly, love kindness and walk humbly, Merton used his contemplative practice to see beyond what disrupts and divides us from one another to find the truth of our common humanity – unity in our creation in the image of God. In Thomas Merton and the New World, Dekar focuses primarily on two issues of concern to our current world. First, he studies Merton’s warnings of the abuse that stems from unmindful and irresponsible use of technology, and its ecological devastation. Second, he examines Merton’s thinking on racial injustice in the mid-1960s through his correspondence with his allies and contemporaries – James Baldwin, for example.

Using Micah 6:8 to arrange Merton’s focus on justice, lovingkindness, and humility, with input from Merton’s dialogue with Gandhi, Martin Luther King, Rachel Carson and others, Dekar demonstrates just how prophetic and transferable Merton’s teachings remain.

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About the Author

Paul R. Dekar is Emeritus Professor of Evangelism and Mission at Memphis Theological Seminary. He volunteers with various organisations, including Dundas Community Services and the Canadian Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends. Other books of Dekar’s published by The Lutterworth Press are Thomas Merton: Twentieth-Century Wisdom for Twenty-First-Century Living (2012) and Community of the Transfiguration (2008).