The Perennial Tradition invariably concludes that you initially cannot see what you are looking for because what you are looking for is doing the looking. God is never an object to be found or possessed as we find other objects, but the One who shares your own deepest subjectivity—or your “self.” We normally called it our soul. Religion called it “the Divine Indwelling…”
For the True Self, there is nothing to hate, reject, deny, or judge as unworthy or unnecessary. It has “been forgiven much and so it loves much” (Luke 7.47). Compassion and mercy come easily now, once you live from inside the Big Body of love. The detours of the False Self were all just delaying tactics, bumps in the road, pressure points that created something new in the long run, as pressure does to carbon deep beneath the earth. God uses everything to construct this hard and immortal diamond, our core of love. And diamonds, they say, are the hardest substance on this earth. It is this strong diamond of love that will always be stronger than death.
Richard Rohr, excerpted from Immortal Diamond: the Search for Our True Self (due for publication February 2013)
We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose. (Romans 8.28)It’s hard to write about things like this without making oneself out to be more than one is – or I find it so, anyway. But what experience I do have does bear out what Rohr is saying here. It was Julian of Norwich who wrote, “Lord Jesus, I have heard you say: ‘Sin is behovely, but all will be well, and all will be well, and every kind of thing will be well’.”
God wastes nothing. The human heart is built to feed on pain, even as it lives in joy, much as we might like not to admit it; from that nourishment grow some of the loveliest flowers of our kind. After all, on that soil grew the great Tree of the Cross…