The Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine University

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Author QuotedClaude Tresmontant
Title QuotedDoctrine morale des prophètes d'Israel
Date (Year/Month/Day)1959/11/08
Imprint[S.l.] : Editions du Seuil. 1958
QuotationYet of what Laurens Van der Post says about the Bushmen. Tribal morality degenerated into collective immorality.T. says very convincingly that perhaps original sin is not sin which society inherited from one individual, but sin which each individual contracts from society (Adam = man in the collective sense). Very important idea that one must break with the exterior, "tribal," mechanical and collective society to which one is passively subject, and isolate oneself in order to be actively united in a spiritual community which transcends national, social, and especially tribal limitations.
Quotation SourceA Search for Solitude: Pursuing the Monk's True Life. The Journals of Thomas Merton, Volume 3, 1952-1960.; Edited by Lawrence S. Cunningham. / San Francisco : Harper Collins. 1996, p. 341
Link to Merton's Copy