Minister’s Blog, June 2016

Immortal Diamond: The Search for Our True Self

Dear Friends in Faith,

As I’ve thought about my plans for the summer, one of the things I thought about is my summer reading list. I’m not sure exactly what it will be but one thing is clear, I plan to re-read the book Immortal Diamond, by Richard Rohr. I share this with you because I’d like to encourage you to consider reading it too.

Simply put, Immortal Diamond is one of the most consequential books I’ve ever read. It presents an understanding of our Christian faith that is both personal and global in its application. It looks at the essence of who we are as individual beings. And it looks at how we, as individual beings, live in relationship with other people and all humanity. It shows the connection between spiritual growth and social action, inner peace and global peace, prayer and justice.

The following are a few excerpts to give you a taste:

“We are made for transcendence and endless horizons, but our small ego usually gets in the way until we become aware of its petty preoccupations and eventually seek a deeper truth. It’s like mining for a diamond. We must dig deep; and yet seem reluctant, even afraid, to do so.

“Whether human beings admit it or not, we are all in love with – even addicted to – the status quo and the past, even when it is killing us. Resurrection offers us a future – dare I say a permanent future – but one that is unknown and thus scary. Humans find it easier to gather their energy around death, pain and their problems than around joy. I know I do. For some sad reason, it is joy that we hold lightly and victimhood that we grab onto.

“ … the tradition that I will be building on (in this book), says that there is a capacity, a similarity, and a desire for divine reality inside all humans. And what we seek is what we are.

“Jesus’ life and his risen body say that the discovery of our own divine DNA is the only, full, and final meaning of being human. The True Self is neither God nor human. The True Self is both at the same time, and both are a total gift.”

“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.”

Immortal Diamond offers a perspective that can help us grow in our relationship with God and give us deeper inner peace. At the same time it offers a perspective that can help us to live more responsibly and faithfully as global citizens. In a world where there is much fear and despair, it can help us to live with courage and joy. This summer, I look forward to reading it again and grasping more fully what it means for how I should live and be in this life. If you choose to read it, please, let me know. I very much want to hear your thoughts.

In Christ,
Vern