Columns

From the category archives: Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

Resentment helps make the world go round

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

November 3, 2014

It's not only love that makes the world go round. Resentment too is prominent in stirring the drink. In so many ways, our world is drowning in resentment. Everywhere you look, it seems, someone is bitter about something and breathing out resentment. What is resentment? Why is this feeling so prevalent in our lives? How do we move beyond it? Soren Kierkegaard once defined resentment this way. Resentment, he suggested, happens when we move from the happy feeling of admiration to the unhappy feeling of jealousy. This, sadly, happens all too frequently in our lives and we are dangerously blind to its occurrence. Me resentful? How dare you make that accusation!

Read the rest of entry »

Paranoia strikes deep; into your brain it will creep

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

October 20, 2014

Have you ever noted how we spontaneously react to a perceived threat? Faced with a threat, our primal instincts tend to take over and we instantly freeze over and begin to shut all the doors opening to warmth, gentleness and empathy inside us.< That's a natural reaction, deeply rooted inside our nature. Biologists tell us that whenever we perceive something or someone as threatening us, paranoia instinctively arises inside us and has the effect of driving us back towards a more primitive place inside our bodies, namely, the reptile part our brain, that remnant inside us from our evolutionary origins millions of years ago. Reptiles are cold-blooded. So too, it seems, are we when we're threatened.

Read the rest of entry »

God's abundant generosity undercuts our sense of scarcity

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

October 6, 2014

My youth had both strengths and weaknesses. I grew up on a farm in the heart of the Canadian Prairies, a second-generation immigrant. Our family was large, and the small farm we lived on gave us enough to live on, though just enough. There were never any extras. We were never hungry or genuinely poor, but we lived in a conscriptive frugality. You were given what you needed, but rarely anything extra. You got just one portion of the main course at a meal and one dessert because these had to be measured out in a way that left enough for everyone.

Read the rest of entry »

Law of karma based on timeless moral wisdom

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

September 22, 2014

In 1991 Hollywood produced a comedy entitled, City Slickers, starring Billy Crystal. In a quirky way, it was a wonderfully moral film, focusing on three, middle-aged men from New York City who were dealing with midlife crises. As a present from their wives, who are frustrated enough with them to attempt anything, the three are given the gift of participating in a cattle drive through New Mexico and Colorado. So these three urbanites set off to ride horses through the wilderness.

Read the rest of entry »

Life of goodness can sap our joy and leave us bitter

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

September 8, 2014

Sometimes everything can seem right on the surface while, deep down, nothing is right at all. We see this, for example, in the famous parable in the Gospels about the Prodigal Son and his Older Brother. By every appearance the Older Brother is doing everything right: He's perfectly obedient to his father, is at home and is doing everything his father asks of him. Unlike his younger brother, he's not wasting his father's property on prostitutes and partying. He seems a model of generosity and morality.

Read the rest of entry »

Aging bodies enable souls to deepen, mellow and mature

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

August 25, 2014

There are few more insightful studies into the spirituality of aging than the late James Hillman's book, The Force of Character. Ironically, Hillman was more critical of Christian spirituality than sympathetic to it; yet his brilliant insights into nature's design and intent offer perspectives on the spirituality of aging that often eclipse what is found in explicitly Christian writings.

Read the rest of entry »

Lost in distraction, we need hurricanes to wake us up

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

July 21, 2014

There's a story in the Hindu tradition that runs something like this: God and a man are walking down a road. The man asks God: "What is the world like?" God answers: "I'd like to tell you, but my throat is parched. I need a cup of cold water. If you can go and get me a cup of cold water, I'll tell you what the world is like." The man heads off to the nearest house to ask for a cup of cold water. He knocks on the door and it is opened by a beautiful young woman. He asks for a cup of cold water. She answers: "I will gladly get it for you, but it's just time for the noon meal, why don't you come in first and eat." He does.

Read the rest of entry »

Don't be stingy in dispensing God's mercy

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

July 7, 2014

Today, for a number of reasons, we struggle to be generous and prodigal with God's mercy. As the number of people who attend church services continues to decline, the temptation among many of our Church leaders and ministers is to see this more as a pruning than as a tragedy and to respond by making God's mercy less, rather than more, accessible.

Read the rest of entry »

God's presence lies within us silent, almost unfelt

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

June 9, 2014

The poet, Rumi, submits that we live with a deep secret that sometimes we know, and then not. That can be helpful in understanding our faith. One reason why we struggle with faith is that God's presence inside us and in our world is rarely dramatic, overwhelming, sensational, something impossible to ignore. God doesn't work like that. Rather God's presence, much to our frustration and loss of patience sometimes, is something that lies quiet and seemingly helpless inside us.

Read the rest of entry »

Prairie author makes pilgrimage of soil and soul

Fr. Ron Rolheiser, omi

May 26, 2014

Nature, desire and soul, we rarely integrate these well. Yet they are so inextricably linked that how we relate to one deeply colours the others; and, indeed, spirituality itself might be defined as what we each do in terms of integrating these three in our lives. More recently notable spiritual authors such as Annie Dillard, Kathleen Norris, Bill Plotkin, and Belden Lane have argued persuasively that physical nature profoundly affects the soul, just as how we manage our private desires deeply influences how we treat nature. Spirituality is naïve when it is divorced from nature and desire. In a book just released, The Road Knows How: A Prairie Pilgrimage through Nature, Desire and Soul, Canadian writer Trevor Herriot joins these voices in calling for a better integration between nature, desire and soul.

Read the rest of entry »

Pages: Prev1234567...43NextReturn Top