To say that I am made in the image of God is to say that love is the reason for my existence, for God is love. Love is my true identity. Selflessness is my true self. Love is my true character. Love is my name.
If, therefore, I do anything or think anything or say anything or know anything that is not purely for the love of God, it cannot give me peace, or rest, or fulfillment, or joy.
To find love I must enter into the sanctuary where it is hidden, which is the mystery of God.
Thomas Merton, from New Seeds of Contemplation
Thomas Merton (1915-1968) was a Trappist monk of the Abbey of Gethsemani, Kentucky in the USA. He wrote over 70 books, primarily on spirituality and social justice. His autobiography, The Seven Storey Mountain, was a best-seller that impacted the post-World War II generation and caused many veterans and students across America to enter monastic life.