The Root of War is Fear
By: Jim Forest
ASSOCIATION OF CATHOLIC PUBLISHERS AWARD: GENERAL INTEREST
NAUTILUS AWARD WINNER!: GOLD MEDAL (RELIGION/SPIRITUALITY of WESTERN THOUGHT)
INDEPENDENT PUBLISHER ILLUMINATION AWARD GOLD MEDAL WINNER (BIOGRAPHY)
"Merton's witness for peace is more urgent than ever in a world becoming rapidly more insane and feverishly impatient. His analysis of the cost of war not only to lives but to minds and imaginations, to the integrity of whole societies, is still unsurpassed. In this vivid and compelling book, Jim Forest who has already contributed so much to our understanding of Merton weaves together a comprehensive reading of Merton's own thinking with personal testimony and reflection. A book of enormous richness and serious challenge." --Rowan Williams, former Archbishop of Canterbury, Master of Magdalene College, Cambridge University
"When Dorothy Day handed her young co-worker, Jim Forest, a letter from Thomas Merton and asked him to answer it, a transforming journey began. The monk and the activist bonded in a profound correspondence and friendship. Its latest fruit is Jim's beautiful exploration of his friend Tom's passion for peacemaking and the abolition of an evil, war, before it abolishes us. Forest goes to the heart of Merton's understanding of our fearful predicament. May we have the courage to go with them into the light." --Jim Douglass
A truly splendid book....The author skillfully, honestly, and humbly draws the reader into her or his own struggle to deal with fear and God's call to live as an authentic Christian in this era of rampant hopelessness and barbarity....A treasure to keep, share among friends and leaders, and, if possible, use in classrooms and book groups everywhere. The book is that good and that important in our world today." --Moni McIntyre, in Catholic Books Review
Thomas Merton, the Trappist monk who died in 1968, is one of the most influential religious figures of modern times. Yet many readers remain unaware of his deep preoccupation with the theme of peace from his early stance as a conscientious objector to his prophetic writings on nuclear war and nonviolence. Drawing in large part on the letters Jim Forest received from Merton, this book offers spiritual encouragement and guidance for those engaged in efforts today to rid the world of war and violence.
Jim Forest (1941-2022), a co-founder of the Catholic Peace Fellowship, was author of many Orbis books, including All Is Grace, Living with Wisdom, At Play in the Lions' Den and Eyes of Compassion (his biographies of peacemakers Dorothy Day, Thomas Merton, Daniel Berrigan, and Thich Naht Hanh). His other bestselling titles include Praying with Icons, The Ladder of the Beatitudes, and Writing Straight with Crooked Lines: A Memoir.
LISTEN UP: The Contemplify podcast of April 2017 is a conversation with Jim Forest. [Episode 28; I-Tunes app required]