[Disinterested love] sees creatures for what they are, means to the possession of God. It uses them only as means and thus arrives successfully at the end, which is God. But cupidity is doomed from the start to frustration because it is based on a false system of values. It takes created things for ends in themselves, which they are not. The will that seeks rest in creatures for their own sake stops on the way to its true end, terminates in a value which does not exist, and thus frustrates all its deepest capacities for happiness and peace.

source: Thomas Merton, introduction to The City of God xv tags: Love