The right thinking man is like the poor: we always have him with us. He is the unbelieving believer: that is to say the religious man who lives, in practice, without a god. He is the one who pretendes to believe, who acts as if he believes, who seems to be moral because he has a set of rigid principles. He clings to a certain number of fixed moral essences but at the same time he takes very good care never to ask himself wither or not they may be real. He will rob you and enslave you and murder you and give you a plausible reason for doing so. He always had a reason, even though his reasons may cancel one another out by a series of contradictions. That does not matter at all, since he does not need the truth, nor justice, nor mercy, least of all God: all he needs is “to be a right thinking man.”
Thomas Merton, The New Man, 31.