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Reviewed by K.C. Finn for Readers' Favorite
The Paradise Man According to Thomas Merton is a short work of religious discussion aimed at readers of all ages and was penned by author Linhxuan Vu. Taking the original concept of the biblical Garden of Eden, and the suffering of humanity since its leaving the garden, Vu re-explains the garden as a metaphor in modern life for the paradise we all seek inside ourselves. Written in part as a self-help guide through discovering one’s own faith in the Christian God, this work explains Thomas Merton’s philosophy of achieving paradise whilst living, but cutting away earthly ego-driven desires and opening ourselves to the goodness of God.
Written for readers in all walks of life, whether they are devout in their daily practices or not, author Linhxuan Vu approaches God from both a philosophical and devout lens, using the real-world realistic principles of Thomas Merton as a guide. The work is well organized with quotations to support the arguments of Merton and the explanations given by Vu, strengthening the concept with every passing chapter. The tone is both instructional and inspirational, attempting to evoke a sense that paradise is indeed a real feeling which can be achieved by living humans, through the toil of creating an ‘attitude of the heart’ and accepting God’s love into their lives. Overall, The Paradise Man According to Thomas Merton presents an intelligent meshing of modern and traditional takes on Christian devotion and belief, and would certainly be a useful read to anyone seeking comfort and the need to fill the emptiness in their lives.