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Summary

From the best-selling author of The Seven Storey Mountain, profound listening for Christians, Catholics, and all wisdom seekers.

Christian theology may not believe in Marxism, and Marxism may think that God is dead, but the two ideologies still have much to say to one another. Thomas Merton, one of the world’s greatest modern Christian intellectuals, was fascinated by the dialogue between Marxists and Christians. Now, by listening to these nine masterful talks, which Merton delivered to the novices at the Abbey of Gethsemani in 1965 and 1966, you can join in these conversations. 

Among the compelling issues Merton considers are the technological revolution; Hromadka, the Christian theologian who argued for dialogue between Christians and Marxists; Church decrees on Marxism, and Hegel’s criticism of the interiority that is central to faith. 

These expertly remastered lectures are part of the archive of nearly 1,000 talks that Merton gave at Gethsemani and throughout the world. Recorded during the last six years of his life, they capture Merton at the height of his wisdom.  

This course is part of the Learn25 collection.

©2021 Thomas Merton (P)2021 Learn25

What listeners say about Thomas Merton on Marxism: The Spiritual and Secular Worlds

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  • Brian Jones
  • 14-06-21

super personal opinion

objectively he speaks from a good place... speaks into many things you find in the post-modern church today... I can see why Bishop Barron really likes him. I just downloaded a bunch of Merton audiobooks to listen to a mystic... this is more geared towards those who silo themselves off from those who think differently than their conservative politics... my upbringing was oversaturated with political conversations like this so I guess that's why I didn't give it 5 Stars. He also mentions he's not a economic expert, and addresses Marxist Theory in its implications to how we interpret society and reality overall (hermeneutics),,, Basically how Marx doesn't lean into the faith and is more focused on self-actualization in work over having other people exploit him for their own "means of production".... the idea Merton puts forth is that contemplation, even in busy work, can lead to satisfaction when having the religious framework offered by the Catholic faith. He also talks a lot of the emergence of "Christian Atheism" and how progressive Christians adopted the "God is Dead" Philosophy into their own sermons and how this was almost an offensive adaptation to those with Orthodox Faith. Merton has a decent sense of humor and tries to see both sides before criticizing the Marxist POV & also does dismantle certain reductionist tendencies in Western Church circles where our faith boils down to the good guys (capitalists) vs. bad guys (communists),,,, Honestly pretty good but I think I'll like more of his works based on more traditional mysticism, rather than a social-critical-pseudo-religious type conversation.

P.S. Some of these jokes wouldn't really fly today but it's nothing super scandalous. Kind of speaks like a Catholic version of Alan Watts