Thomas Merton (1915–68) was an eco-prophet and a champion of both deep contemplation and genuine activism. On so many fronts he took on dark forces with an acute criticism and an artistic flair, whether in religion (including his own) or in culture.

There were really three Thomas Mertons. There was the young man whose parents were artists who met in Paris, married and settled in a small village, Prades, in Southern France, where Thomas was born. They both died when he was a boy. Thomas spent time in school in England, after which he attended Columbia University in New York, where, though ...


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