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the real self

The real self

I consider that the spiritual life is the life of [one’s] real self, the life of that interior self whose flame is so often allowed to be smothered under the ashes of anxiety and futile concern.

— Thomas Merton, No Man Is an Island

In these few words Merton has spelled out the scope of this blog:

  • the ‘real self’ God made us to be
  • how to find that self
  • how to fan it aflame amid the ashes of our lives

It boils down to what I have come to believe is the good news of the Gospel:

Following Jesus leads us from our fake selves to our real selves,

from living in our heads to living from our hearts,

from advancing our own agendas to receiving the gift of His,

from thirsting for the next transient thrill to drinking deeply of eternal life.

dw

  • What do you think of the notion that each of us has a ‘real self’ that God loves and nurtures?
  • To what extent do you feel in touch with your real self?
  • What are the ashes in your life that hinder your real self from emerging and thriving?

I encourage you to consider writing out your answers, either in a journal or in the comments section.

Grace and peace to you…

dw

p.s. this, too, is a refresh of an earlier post

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Other Writings

More courage needed

 

To find “ourselves” then is to find not only our poor, limited, perplexed souls, but to find the power of God that raised Christ from the dead and “built us together in Him unto a habitation of God in the Spirit” (Ephesians 2:22).

— Thomas Merton, No Man Is an Island

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Other Writings

Identify yourself!

 

You cannot tell me who I am, and I cannot tell you who you are. If you do not know your own identity, who is going to identify you? Others can give you a name or a number, but they can never tell you who you really are. That is something you yourself can only discover from within.

— Thomas Merton, No Man Is an Island