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"Place no hope in the feeling of assurance, in spiritual comfort. You may well have to get along without this.
"Place no hope in the inspirational preachers of Christian sunshine, who are able to pick you up and set you back on your feet and make you feel good for three or four days—until you fold up and collapse into despair.
"Self-confidence is a precious natural gift, a sign of health. But it is not the same thing as faith.
"Faith is much deeper, and it must be deep enough to subsist when we are weak, when we are sick, when our self-confidence is gone, when our self-respect is gone.
"I do not mean that faith only functions when we are otherwise in a state of collapse. But true faith must be able to go on even when everything else is taken away from us. Only a humble (person) is able to accept faith on these terms, so completely without reservation that (s)he is glad of it in its pure state, and welcomes it happily even when nothing else comes with it, and when everything else is taken away.” ― Thomas Merton, New Seeds of Contemplation
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