Immortal DiamondThe Search for Our True Self
Dissolve the distractions of ego to find our authentic selves in God In his bestselling book Falling Upward, Richard Rohr talked about ego (or the False Self) and how it gets in the way of spiritual maturity. But if there's a False Self, is there also a True Self? What is it? How is it found? Why does it matter? And what does it have to do with the spiritual journey? This book likens True Self to a diamond, buried deep within us, formed under the intense pressure of our lives, that must be searched for, uncovered, separated from all the debris of ego that surrounds it. In a sense True Self must, like Jesus, be resurrected, and that process is not resuscitation but transformation. Shows how to navigate spiritually difficult terrain with clear vision and tools to uncover our True Selves Written by Father Richard Rohr, the bestselling author of Falling Upward Examines the fundamental issues of who we are and helps us on our path of spiritual maturity Immortal Diamond (whose title is taken from a line in a Gerard Manley Hopkins poem) explores the deepest questions of identity, spirituality, and meaning in Richard Rohr's inimitable style.
Invitation: The Immortal Diamond of the True Self vii Preface xvii 1 What Is ‘‘The True Self’’? 1 2 What Is ‘‘The False Self’’? 27 3 What Dies and Who Lives? 59 4 The Knife Edge of Experience 67 5 Thou Art That 95 6 If It Is True, It Is True Everywhere 127 7 Enlightenment at Gunpoint 139 8 Intimate with Everything 159 9 Love Is Stronger Than Death 175 Epilogue 187 Appendix A The True Self and the False Self 189 Appendix B A Mosaic of Metaphors 193 Appendix C Watching at the Tomb: Attitudes for Prayer 199 Appendix D Head into Heart: ‘‘The Sacred Heart’’ 203 Appendix E Adam’s Breathing: Praying from the Clay 207 Appendix F Twelve Ways to Practice Resurrection Now 211 Notes 213 Bibliography 231 The Author 237 Index 239
How well do we know ourselves? So many roles and identities shape individual lives that it's easy to be confused about what is authentically "us." Rohr, a Franciscan priest and founding director of the Center for Action and Contemplation in Albuquerque, N.Mex., leads a narrative excursion to the "True Self," the core of character that lies like a diamond buried within. Writing for secular seekers, the author claims that individuals need to allow the false self to fall away in order to get in touch with the true self, allowing it to breathe and flourish. Grasping onto the superficial identities of the false self, such as job, class, race, or accomplishments, can keep people from being the loving and generous conduits of the Divine that they are meant to be. God is always communicating with humans, but those who cling to ego and social position can’t hear these divine messages. The author makes clear that it is not easy to shed this falseness for truth in the inner life, but it is a spiritual path well worth the effort. (Jan.) (Publishers Weekly, February 2013)
Fr. Richard Rohr is a Franciscan priest of the New Mexico Province. He founded the Center for Action and Contemplation in Albuquerque, New Mexico, in 1986, where he presently serves as founding director. Richard is the author of more than twenty books, an internationally known speaker, and a regular contributing writer for Sojourners and Tikkun magazines and the CAC's quarterly journal, Radical Grace. He is the author of Falling Upward and Falling Upward: A Companion Journal.
"I promise you that the discovery of your True Self will feel like a thousand pounds of weight have fallen from your back. You will no longer have to build, protect, or promote any idealized self image. Living in the True Self is quite simply a much happier existence ..." —From Chapter One In his bestselling book Falling Upward (and in many of his other teachings), Franciscan priest Father Richard Rohr talked at length about ego (part of the False Self) and how it gets in the way of spiritual maturity, especially if its preoccupations continue into the second half of life. But if there's a False Self, is there also a True Self? What is it? How is it found? Why does it matter? And what does it have to do with the spiritual journey? In Immortal Diamond, Father Rohr likens True Self to a diamond, buried deep within us, formed under the intense pressure of our lives, that must be searched for, uncovered, and separated from all the debris of ego that surrounds it. In a sense True Self must, like Jesus, be resurrected, and that process is not resuscitation but transformation. Immortal Diamond (whose title is taken from a line in a Gerard Manley Hopkins poem) explores the deepest questions of identity, spirituality, and meaning. In Richard Rohr's inimitable style, the book brings to light the mysteries of grace, death, and resurrection.
Praise for Immortal Diamond "For a growing number of us, reading Richard Rohr is like sitting around the tribal fire, listening to the village elder give words to that which we've always known to be true; we just didn't know how to say it. Profound, intelligent, wise, and passionate, this book continues Richard's great work in showing us what vibrant, Jesus-centered faith looks like ..." —Rob Bell, pastor; author of Love Wins and Velvet Elvis "This book is the ripe fruit of a life courageously and honestly lived. Such profound wisdom conveyed with such elegant simplicity!" —Cynthia Bourgeault, author, The Wisdom Way of Knowing, The Meaning of Mary Magdalene, and The Wisdom Jesus "The power of Immortal Diamond is impossible to exaggerate. With the cutting skills of a surgeon and the heart of a Franciscan, Richard exposes the misperceptions and counterfeits that have shaped our faith. He then promises and delivers a 'staggering change of perspective' along with a taste of the intimacy of all love, both human and divine. Every word is a rare gift from a true elder and a worthy guide." —Paula D'Arcy, author, Gift of the Red Bird and Waking Up to This Day