Monday, August 21, 2006

Building with/out God

I was deeply struct by a reading from Thomas Merton this morning. Merton in his usual erudite manner show the danger of thinking that leadership is primarily about power and dominance:

“Those who seek to build a better world without God are those who, trusting in money, power, technology and organization, deride the spiritual strength of faith and love and fix all their hopes on a huge monolithic society, having a monopoly over all power, all production, and even over the minds of its members. But to alienate the spirit of man by subjecting him to such monstrous indignity is to make injustice and violence inevitable. By such means we may indeed increase economic production but in doing so we will onlymake the world worse.”

I could not help but to think of the words of Psalm 127 (verse 1): "Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain. "

May our quest for moral leadership be focused on the "power" of love and faith, rooted in our desire to imitate He who is all truth.

From Disputed Questions by Thomas Merton (San Diego: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Publishers, Inc. 1960), page 129.