Consequently, the light of God affects that soul the way the light of the sun affects a diseased eye. It causes pain. God's love is too pure. The soul, impure and diseased by its selfishness, is shocked and repelled by the very purity of God. It cannot understand the suffering caused by the light of God. It has formed its own ideas of God: ideas that are based upon its natural knowledge and which unconsciously flatter its own self-love. But God contradicts those ideas.

source: Thomas Merton, What is Contemplation? 41 tags: Holiness, God