There is a traditional saying of ancient wisdom: 'A threshold is a sacred thing. In some places of the world, in some traditional cultures and in monastic life, this is still remembered. It is something, however, that we often forget today. To take time to pause at a threshold - be it a place, or a moment between one action and the next - is to show reverence for the handling of space and time, and respect for those who we meet. Pausing allows us to let go of all the demands and expectations of the previous activity, and to prepare for the encounter with another. Esther de Waal explores what this ancient wisdom has to teach us about our public lives in the world today.
In Falling Upward (and in many of his other teachings), Richard Rohr talks at length about ego (or the False Self) and how it gets in the way of spiritual maturity, especially if it’s 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 this new book, he likens the True Self to a diamond, buried deep within us, formed under the intense pressure of our lives, needing to 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 (the 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.
In our celebrity-obsessed culture, humility is unfashionable and too-often dismissed or confused with the cringing, false humility of Uriah Heep. When genuine humility is energised with real passion, fresh and exciting light is shone on the challenge of following Jesus Christ today and humility is rediscovered as a healthy and life-giving virtue, capable of transforming our Blame-Someone-Else society.
This is about humility as the deepest kind of realism. It will resonate profoundly with all who are hungry for truth... Rowan Williams
The spiritual and psychological insights of these essays were nurtured in a monastic milieu, but their issues are universally human. Thomas Merton lays a foundation for personal growth and transformation through fidelity to "our own truth and inner being". Our desire and need to attain "a fully human and personal identity" is the focus of Merton's concern.