Why So Much Status Quo? Quotes from Falling Upward, Immortal Diamond, Eager To Love, Breathing Under Water and The Naked Now by Richard Rohr

by Mark Votava


  • Acceptance of growth through suffering

“This acceptance of growth through suffering is what gives us wisdom and spiritual authority, and finally teaches us love itself – as a gift from beyond.  Spiritual authority is first of all inner authority, but then it can become our outer authority too…”  Eager to Love: The Alternative Way of Francis of Assisi

  • Seeking the divine

“If you are seeking the divine, you have already made contact with the divine in yourself.  If you have not made contact with the divine in yourself, you will likely be bored with any notion of spiritual search.  If you have, you will seek it and find it everywhere…”  Immortal Diamond: The Search for Our True Self

  • Staying in a control tower for the first half of life

“After almost seventy years, I am still a mystery to myself!  Our youthful demand for certainty does eliminate most anxiety on the conscious level, so I can see why many of us stay in a control tower during the first half of life…”  Falling Upward: A Spirituality of the Two Halves of Life

  • Why so much status quo?

“Why so much status quo?  Once you know that the one thing the ego hates more than anything else is change, it makes perfect sense why most people hunker down into mere survival.  Whether because of abuse and oppression or other causes, defended and defensive selves will do anything rather than change – even acting against their own best interest…”  The Naked Now: Learning to See as the Mystics See

  • Self-created success and defenses

“Self-made people, all heroic spiritualities, will try to manufacture an even stronger self by willpower and determination – to put them back in charge and seeming control.  Usually most people admire this, not realizing the unbending, sometimes proud, and eventually rigid personality that will be the long-term result.  They will then need to continue in this pattern of self-created success and defenses.  This pushy response does not normally create loving people, but just people in control and in ever deeper need of control.  Eventually, the game is unsustainable, unless you make others, even your whole family, pay the price for your own aggression and self-assertion – which is the common pattern.”  Breathing Under Water: Spirituality and the Twelve Steps

  • Mystery, doubt and “unknowing”

“Wisdom happily lives with mystery, doubt and ‘unknowing,’ and in such living, ironically resolves that very mystery to some degree.  I have never figured out why unknowing becomes another kind of knowing, but it surely seems to be…”  Falling Upward: A Spirituality of the Two Halves of Life

  • Great love is both very attached and very detached at the same time

“Great love is both very attached (‘passionate’) and yet very detached at the same time.  It is love but not addiction.  The soul, the True Self, has everything, so it does not require any particular thing.  When you have all things, you do not have to protect any one thing.  True Self can love and let go.  The False Self cannot do this…”  Immortal Diamond: The Search for Our True Self

What is your favorite quote?