Merton on sanity

We can no longer assume that because a man is “sane” he is therefore in his “right mind.” The whole concept of sanity in a society where spiritual values have lost their meaning is itself meaningless…

And so I ask myself: what is the meaning of a concept of sanity that excludes love, considers it irrelevant, and destroys our capacity to love other human beings, to respond to their needs and their sufferings, to recognize them also as persons, to apprehend their pain as one’s own? Evidently this is not necessary for “sanity” at all.

The worst error is to imagine that a Christian must try to be “sane” like everybody else, that we belong in our kind of society.

A Devout Meditation in Memory of Adolf Eichmann by Thomas Merton inĀ Raids on the Unspeakable.