Book Review: The Seven Storey Mountain

Reblogging for future reference:

Edge Induced Cohesion

The Seven Storey Mountain:  An Autobiography Of Faith, by Thomas Merton

In finishing this book I have completed the task of reading the books that various contemplative Christians have viewed as the 25 books that all Christians should read.  I can honestly say that I likely would never have read the book had I not been encouraged to do so by this challenge [1].  Was it a worthwhile book to read?  Absolutely.  There was a lot to appreciate about this book.  Yet, at the same time, I feel rather ambivalent about this book, specifically about Thomas Merton’s self-portrayal.  I have read Catholics complaining about the Mertonization of contemporary Catholicism, and I can understand the nature of the problem in looking at this person, who comes off as being highly conflicted and even self-contradictory.  It also seems as if Merton popularized a model of celebrity renunciation that others, like Henri Nouwen…

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About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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