Thursday, November 29, 2007


"Merely to resist evil with evil by hating those who hate us and seeking to destroy them, is actually no resistance at all. It is active and purposeful collaboration in evil that brings [us] into direct and intimate contact with the same source of evil and hatred which inspires the acts of [our] enemy. It leads in practice to a denial of Christ and to the service of hatred rather than love."
- Thomas Merton
from Passion For Peace


Jane said...

Thanks for this quote Simon. I've been reflecting a great deal on what resistance means in recent months. In many ways the only ways forwards I seem to find is either getting strident and angry, or getting depressed and withdrawn.
I recognise that my angry words could be seen to be evil by some people - I think it is Brecht who says "Even anger against injustice makes the voice grow harsh." interestingly that quote goes on Alas we who wished to lay the foundations of kindness could not ourselves be kind"
So is trying to speak up for justice and against injustice just about finding the right tone? And where does that really leave commitment to listening to the voices of the oppressed and those on the margins?
Just late night ramblings so that I don't have to listen to the complete end of the Labour Party on the late news. Some things are just too depressing and hard to bear!

Simon Barrow said...

I recognise the anger/depression dynamic only too well. I don't think one breaks that by denying anger, either (which is what can happen in some 'peacey' circles). The issue is about re-channeling energy on the one hand, and developing a sense of perspective on the other (for which I find humour indispensible). Commiserations on the Labour Party, by the way. It still has good souls in it, but not much of a soul per se, it seems.