Be yourself – Everyone else is taken (Oscar Wilde)
March 10th, 2007 by cgribble

Richard Rohr – Manhood principles

Finding a valid manhood today is not an easy task. We live in a time where men have been forced to reevaluate their roles and in the process of often lost their way. Rohr has developed 5 principles of initiation that men need to realise if they are to really discover their true selves. Like Jesus said, its only those who lose themselves that truly find themselves. These five principles are difficult because they remove one’s self from the centre.

. – I am not the centre of the universe. This is the opposite of the self help mantra which tells us life is all about finding ourselves.

LIFE IS HARD – As we are all aware suffering is universal.
There are two main ways that we deal with this pain:
1. We will become inflexible, blaming and petty as we grow older.

2. We will need other people to hate in order to expel our inner negativity.

3. We will play the victim in some form as a means of false power.

4. We will spend much of our life seeking security and status as a cover-up for lack of a substantial sense of self.

5. We will pass on our deadness to our family, children and friends.

Human beings will do everything under the sun to avoid the problems of me, now, and here.

Only suffering and certain kinds of awe lead us into genuinely new experiences. All the rest is merely the confirmation of old experience.


Transformed people tend to transform people (hurt people hurt people).

Herea Copernican revolution of the mind equivalent to that for earthbound humans when they discovered that our planet was not the centre of the universe.

Catholics have made Jesus into a scholastic philosopher, Protestants have made him into a moralist: so when we can’t get a clear moral code or dogma out of Jesus teaching we simply abandoned it in any meaningful sense (so the Sermon on the MountĀ  the essence of Jesus teachingĀ  is the least quoted in official Church documents


The essence of modern self-help: Take control of your life!(but the Twelve-Step program teaches that you must admit you are powerless before you can find your true power.

The virtues in the first half of life are about self-control; in the second half about giving up control. This is how we grow:/ By being deciseively defeated by ever greater forces(Rilke).

If you are willing to serenely bear the trial of being displeasing to yourself, then you will be for Jesus a pleasant place of shelter (Therese of Lisieux).


2 Responses to “Richard Rohr – Manhood principles”
  1. Nice one – thought provoking and quite validating as a stay at home father, but where is the fifth Principle – have I missed it?

  2. I thought I posted it last night while we were Skyping – the 5th promise is..


    Lovely. Just lovely.