Tonight, we will be discussing Chapter 2 “What is ‘The False Self’?” in Richard Rohr’s book Immortal Diamond: The Search for Our True Self. Rohr points out that the primary characteristic of the “false self” is its preoccupation with the things of the world. pp.43-48. These things aren’t evil or bad (everything was made by God and is sustained within him), but the world simply cannot give life. The “world” is preoccupied with maintaining itself – that which is proper, defensible, and admirable” (p.46) – but which ultimately passes away. The Apostle John tells us the things of this world cannot truly know God. John 1:10. And when our love and ourselves are directed towards the trappings of this world, we fail to participate in the love which is God. 1 John 2:15. Life and love require the shedding of the False Self.
Within this chapter, Rohr points out that one of the great falsehoods of the False Self is the individuality of the self – that each of us is wholly unique, special, superior, and self-adequate. pp.49-52. The movement from the individuality of the False Self to the communion of the True Self is best exemplified in loving someone else. Within this love, we must necessarily let go of the separate self and move from individuality to community. p.49. This is why Jesus and the rest of the Scriptures so often use the example of marriage to understand our communion with the Divine Reality.
In the conclusion of Chapter 2, Rohr emphasizes that the letting go of the False Self and discovery of the True Self is not so much a matter of effort on our part, but simply allowing the Spirit to work within us. Rohr says, “It is very important that you know that the True Self is not (a personal) moral perfection or even psychological wholeness,” (p.51) rather it is a place where we “participate in the One who is” (p.52). Our calling, as Jesus prays, is to move out of this world into the oneness which is the world to come. John 17:6-26. As we grow spiritually, the False Self naturally fades into the background, revealing the True Immortal Diamond within. p.56.
I have attached the two emails from Rohr’s daily meditations. The first email is from yesterday and speaks directly to the Scripture’s use of the marriage analogy to describe our union with God. The second email from today talks about Jesus using the “Kingdom of God” terminology to describe the idea of the eternal present.
Dinner is at 6. The menu is Shepherd’s Pie. Discussion about 6:45. Hope to see you here. Please bring a friend. (If you have a shrimp allergy, please let me know.)
As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me. The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one, so that the world may know that you have sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me.John 17:21-23