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Καινη Διαθήκη

Made in the Divine Image   27/10/2021 12:00 πμ
Source: Richard Rohr's Article:

Richard Rohr Meditation: Made in the Divine Image

Center for Action and Contemplation

Oct 26, 2021, 11:24 PM

Wednesday, October 27th, 2021

Richard Rohr's Daily Meditation

From the Center for Action and Contemplation

Made in the Divine Image

Father Richard views religion’s purpose as reminding us of who we truly are:

The essential work of religion is to help us recognize and recover the divine image in ourselves and everything else too. Whatever we call it, this ‘image of God’ is absolute and unchanging. There is nothing we can do to increase or decrease it. It is not ours to decide who has it or does not have it. It is a pure and total gift, given equally to all. [1]

It is often the mystics who understand that “My deepest me is God!” to paraphrase St. Catherine of Genoa (1447–1510). [2] In these passages, contemplative writer Ursula King presents three mystics who saw God’s divine image as more fundamental in the human soul than sin. The fourth-century theologian and mystic Gregory of Nyssa (c. 335–c. 394) held that:

In each human soul, there exists a divine element, a kind of inner eye capable of glimpsing something of God, for there exists a deep relationship, an affinity between human and divine nature. [3]

The medieval mystic Mechtild of Magdeburg (c. 1212–c. 1282) yearned for the soul’s original intimacy with God:

Mechtild’s work is motivated by the deep desire that the soul returns to its original being in God. It is her true nature to live in the flowing light of the Godhead, just as it is a bird’s nature to fly in the air and a fish’s nature to swim in the water. She has emanated from the heart of God, where she must return, but she discovers her utter nakedness before and in God: “Lord, now I am a naked soul!” Yet her intense love pours out in praise of God:

O God! so generous in the outpouring of Thy gifts!

So flowing in Thy Love!

So burning in Thy desire!

So fervent in union!

O Thou who doest rest on my heart

Without whom I could no longer live! [4]

In the early seventeenth century, Francis de Sales (1567–1622) became Bishop of Geneva, Switzerland. In a time of deep religious division, he was known for his belief in “original goodness.” Ursula King continues:  

Whereas many other spiritual writers in seventeenth-century France held a pessimistic view of the human being, stressing sin and abnegation, Francis de Sales believed in the inherent goodness of human nature. Human beings have a natural inclination to love God, due to the correspondence between divine goodness and human souls, which bear some kind of divine imprint or spark.
God holds us by this goodness as in some way linked to himself “as little birds by a string, by which He can draw us when it pleases His Compassion.” Francis does not speak about the “ground” of the soul like the Rhenish [or Rhineland] mystics, but refers to the “mountain top” of the soul, the utmost summit where self ends and God begins, a no-place which is yet a place, a dwelling place that can only be reached by an all-transforming movement of love. [5]

[1] Adapted from Richard Rohr, The Universal Christ: How a Forgotten Reality Can Change Everything We See, Hope for, and Believe (Convergent: 2019), 59, 60–61.

[2] Catherine of Genoa, Vita, chapter 15. Her text is “In Dio è il mio essere, il mio Me.”

[3] Ursula King, Christian Mystics: Their Lives and Legacies throughout the Ages

(HiddenSpring: 2001), 48.

[4] King, 93, quoting Mechthild, The Flowing Light of the Godhead, 1.17.

[5] King, 162–163, quoting Francis de Sales, Treatise on the Love of God, 1.18.

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Finding Peace in Awareness


You are at the mercy of your thoughts and emotions because they trigger further reactions, leading to a cycle of negative thoughts and emotions. Reacting on autopilot only leads to misery, as the mind operates on a survival instinct that creates a sense of lack and fear. The key is to not react and find salvation from the mind's delusions. The truth lies in finding peace, letting go, forgiving, and living in the present moment.

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