Richard Rohr Meditation: Who Am I?

True Self and False Self:
Week 1

Who Am I?
Sunday, August 6, 2017

Forgive me, if this seems too harsh, but it seems to me that much of religion has become a preoccupation with forms rather than with substance. People like Augustine of Hippo, Teresa of Avila, Thomas Merton, and Karl Rahner tell us that the discovery of our deepest self and the discovery of God should be the same discovery. That’s why good spirituality and good psychology operate well together.

Too much of both religion and common therapy seem to be committed to making people comfortable with what many of us call our “false self.” It’s just rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic, which is going to sink anyway. To be rebuilt from the bottom up, you must start with the very ground of your being. The spiritual path should be about helping you learn where your true ground, your deepest truth, and your eternal life really are. Our common phrase for that is “finding your soul.”

I believe that God gives us our soul—our deepest identity, our True Self, our unique blueprint—already at our very conception. Our unique little bit of heaven is installed by the Manufacturer at its beginning! We are given a span of years to discover it, to choose it, and to live our own unique destiny to the full. The discovery of our own soul is frankly what we are here for.

Your soul is who you are in God and who God is in you. We do not “make” or “create” our souls. We only awaken them, allow them, and live out of their deepest messages. Normally, we need to unlearn a lot of false messages—given by family, religion, and culture—in order to get back to that foundational life which is “hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:3). Yes, transformation is often more about unlearning than learning, which is why the religious traditions call it “conversion” or “repentance.”

As a young friar, I remember being very confused about Jesus beginning his preaching with the word “change” (Mark 1:15, Matthew 3:2). What was I supposed to change from? I was a good Catholic, a Franciscan, soon to be a priest, and trying to keep my vows. I assumed he meant it for other “bad” people. But those roles and identities were still all “forms,” not necessarily the substance of my soul. I hope you get the point. The false self is all the more delusional the more it appears to be “good.”

Gateway to Silence:
I am love. 

References:

Adapted from Richard Rohr, Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life (Jossey-Bass: 2011), ix-xi;
Immortal Diamond: The Search for Our True Self (Jossey-Bass: 2013), 13, 16; and
True Self/False Self, disc 1 (Franciscan Media: 2003), CD.

Richard Rohr’s Daily Meditation Summary-11/20-11/25 The Perennial Tradition

2016-11-20_header1.jpg

The Perennial Tradition

Summary: Sunday, November 20-Friday, November 25, 2016

The Perennial Tradition recognizes there is a Divine Reality underneath and inherent in the world of things; there is in the human soul a natural capacity, similarity, and longing for this Divine Reality; the final goal of existence is union with this Divine Reality. (Sunday)

Jesus didn’t come to create a new or exclusive religion. He came to reform and reinvigorate the very meaning of all religion—and ground it in human nature and creation itself—which is universal. (Monday)

If it is the truth, it is true all the time and everywhere, and sincere lovers of truth will take it wherever it comes from. If it is true, it is common domain, and “there for the mind to see in the things that God has made” (Romans 1:20). (Tuesday)

What we seek is what we are, which is exactly why Jesus says that we will find it (see Matthew 7:7-8). God is never an object to be found or possessed as we find other objects, but the One who shares our own deepest subjectivity—or our “self.” (Wednesday)

“There is one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God who is Father of all, over all, through all, and within all, and each one of us has been given our own share of grace.” —Ephesians 4:5-7 (Thursday)

“The love of God creates in us such a oneing that when it is truly seen, no person can separate themselves from another person. . . . In the sight of God all humans are oned, and one person is all people and all people are in one person.” —Julian of Norwich (Friday)

Practice: Giving Thanks
Many cultures and religions have a beautiful tradition of saying a prayer before or after a meal, expressing gratitude and asking for blessing. If we are accustomed to praying over our food, it may become a rote, almost thoughtless gesture. Yet it is another opportunity to intentionally open ourselves to receive and participate in Love. The food is already blessed simply by its existence. God doesn’t require our words of thanks. But it does us good to “say grace,” to verbally acknowledge the giving of life—plant and animal—for our sustenance.
If you have a practice of saying grace, bring greater awareness and presence to it. Find or create a prayer to voice your gratitude. This Hindu blessing, from the Bhagavad Gita, is said before meals:
This ritual is One. The food is One. We who offer the food are One. The fire of hunger is also One. All action is One. We who understand this are One.

Indeed, it is all One in the immense and undiscriminating Love that is God.

Gateway to Silence:
All truth is one.

The Cosmic Christ-Richard Rohr

We have found the Cosmic Christ week of mediations by Richard Rohr meaningful and thought you might enjoy the entire week. This is a summary of last week’s posts. Check them out and let us know what you think.

2016-10-30_header-WP.jpg
The Cosmic Christ:
Week 2

Summary: Sunday, October 30-Friday, November 4, 2016

The mystery of Christ is revealed, and the Christ “comes again,” whenever we are able to see the spiritual and the material coexisting, in any moment, in any event, and in any person. (Sunday)
Jesus did not come to create a country club or a tribe of people who could say, “We’re in and you’re out. We’ve got the truth and you don’t.” Jesus came to reveal something that was true everywhere, for everyone, and all the time. (Monday)
Christ is the name for the very shape and meaning of the universe. Jesus reveals this wonderful message in human form, showing us the full meaning of our own lives—in a way that we could love and admire. (Tuesday)
Instead of believing that Jesus came to personally fulfill you privately, how about trusting that you are here to fulfill Christ? You are a part of this movement of an ever-growing Cosmic Christ that is coming to be in this “one great act of giving birth.” (Wednesday)
Teilhard de Chardin writes: “Everything that rises must converge.” In other words, higher levels of evolution are always a movement toward greater unity. (Thursday)
There is a cruciform shape to reality, it seems, and loss precedes all renewal, emptiness makes way for every new infilling, every transformation in the universe requires the surrendering of a previous “form.” (Friday)

Practice: Moving Beyond Matter
Look around you and notice your surroundings at this moment. Let your eyes fall on some object—perhaps a candle, tree, rock, or creature. Simply observe the object, without judging or labeling. Give your full attention, senses, and presence to this object.
Gradually let your gaze soften and take in the more-than-matter-ness that is also here. Deepen your awareness of God’s presence within this thing and within you.
Rest in silence for several minutes (or continue with a longer time of contemplative prayer) and then turn your gaze to bless the rest of the room, landscape, and world in which you find yourself, one in Love.
Gateway to Silence:
Christ has died. Christ is risen. Christ will come again.
References:
Richard Rohr, A Spring Within Us: Daily Meditations (CAC: 2016), 36.

For Further Study:
Richard Rohr, Christ, Cosmology & Consciousness: A Reframing of How We See (MP3 download)
Richard Rohr, The Cosmic Christ (CD, MP3 download)

Richard Rohr’s Daily Meditation-Path of Descent

A pair of hands holding broken pottery and mud.

Jesus’ Invitation: Follow Me
Tuesday, October 18, 2016

 I have found the phenomenon of male initiation in every culture and on every continent until the modern era. [1] Something that universal—and so uniform in its goals—was surely fulfilling a deep human and social need. It was deemed necessary for cultural and personal survival, it seems. Throughout history, men were more often in positions of power and privilege, whereas women were often unfairly subjugated. Women, therefore, more naturally learned the path of descent (self-emptying) through their “inferior” position to men.

Structural and Personal Freedom

Simplicity

by Fr. Richard Rohr, OFM

Structural and Personal Freedom
Thursday, October 6, 2016

Francis and Clare of Assisi were not so much prophets by what they said as in the radical, system-critiquing way that they lived their lives. They found both their inner and outer freedom by structurally living on the edge of the inside of church and society. Too often people seek either inner freedom or mere outer freedom, but seldom—in my opinion—do people seek and find both. Francis and Clare did.

Their agenda for justice was the most foundational and undercutting of all others: a very simple lifestyle outside the system of production and consumption (the real meaning of the vow of poverty), plus a conscious identification with the marginalized of society (the communion of saints pushed to its outer edge). In this position, you do not “do” acts of peace and justice as much as your life is itself peace and justice. You take your small and sufficient place in the great and grand scheme of God.

By “living on the edge of the inside” I mean building on the solid Tradition (“from the inside”) from a new and creative stance where you cannot be co-opted for purposes of security, possessions, or the illusions of power (“on the edge”). Francis and Clare placed themselves outside the social and ecclesiastical system. Francis was not a priest, nor were Franciscan men to pursue priesthood in the early years of the order. Theirs was not a spirituality of earning or seeking worthiness, career, church status, moral one-upmanship, or divine favor (which they knew they already had).

Within their chosen structural freedom, Francis and Clare also found personal, mental, and emotional freedom. They were free from negativity and ego. Such liberation is full Gospel freedom.

Today, most of us try to find personal and individual freedom even as we remain inside of structural boxes and a system of consumption that we are then unable or unwilling to critique. Our mortgages, luxuries, and privileged lifestyles control our whole future. Whoever is paying our bills and giving us security and status determines what we can and cannot say or even think. Self-serving institutions that give us our security, status, or identity are considered “too big to fail” and are invariably beyond judgment from the vast majority of people. Evil can hide in systems much more readily than in individuals. [1]

When Jesus and John’s Gospel used the term “the world,” they did not mean the earth, creation, or civilization, which Jesus clearly came to love and save (see John 12:47). They were referring to idolatrous systems and institutions that are invariably self-referential and “always passing away” (see 1 Corinthians 7:31). Francis and Clare showed us it is possible to change the system not by negative attacks (which tend to inflate the ego), but simply by quietly moving to the side and doing it better!

Gateway to Silence:
Live simply so that others may simply live.

References:
[1] See Richard Rohr, Spiral of Violence: The World, the Flesh, and the Devil (CAC: 2008), CD and MP3 download.

Adapted from Richard Rohr, Eager to Love: The Alternative Way of Francis of Assisi (Franciscan Media: 2014), 33-36.

Love is Who You Are-Richard Rohr’s Meditation 8/11/16

Love Is Who You Are
Thursday, August 11 , 2016
Love is not really an action that you do. Love is what and who you are, in your deepest essence. Love is a place that already exists inside of you, but is also greater than you. That’s the paradox. It’s within you and yet beyond you. This creates a sense of abundance and more-than-enoughness, which is precisely the satisfaction and deep peace of the True Self. You know you’ve found a well that will never go dry, as Jesus says (see John 4:13-14). Your True Self, God’s Love in you, cannot be exhausted.

Continue reading by clicking the link below:

Source: http://myemail.constantcontact.com/Richard-Rohr-s-Meditation–Love-Is-Who-You-Are.html?soid=1103098668616&aid=4RQ_tNpxUbg