- - -
It seems that Rohr is drawing from a number of resources rather than his own research. What he articulates is a kind of synthesis between what Wilber and James Fowler have taught.
What do you think? Does this ring true with you?
One proviso is that no one is ever completely in any stage. Usually our development is spread out among several at any given time, creeping slowly (we hope) toward greater freedom, integration, and union.
For once I agree with BR: "I don't think we should get locked into any stage theory: it is always someone else's retrospective view of his or her own journey, which may not include our own experiences or insights. Our obligation is to be true to our own insights, our own inner light." That's from her interview with Stephan Bodian, by the way.
I think it's ok, actually, at least at some level. It might help someone in the early stages of a real spiritual journey. What's interesting to me is how Rohr categorises various types of Christian, how he sees most stuck in these early stages, and how little kataphatic religion matters in later stages, all of which I completely understand. For all my identity as a Christian growing up, and all the Christians I knew as a boy and know now, I don't see many, if any, close to the latter stages. Most are stuck in dogma and legalism; most are stuck in stage 2.
Derek, what's interesting about the BR quote is that she was very much into stages when I corresponded with her years ago. In particular, she liked using the traditional Purgative, Illuminative, Unitive approach, and divided the latter into six stages in her book, The Path to No-Self. She regarded "no-self" as a stage beyond the unitive, then, in What is Self?, spoke of four additional stages beyond no-self: resurrection, ascension, incarnation, eucharist.
I teach a class on spiritual development as part of our adult enrichment SpiritLife program at the retreat center, and we go over a variety of approaches. I think it's helpful to be able to say something about how the journey goes. Spiritual directors, in particular, need to know that the issues and disciplines are likely to change along the way. Personally, I like the Purgative, Illuminative, Unitive approach for describing the deepening relationship with God, and like to plot this against developmental approaches like Loevinger's stages of Ego Development (or Spiral Dynamics). St. Teresa's Interior Castle seems something of a synthesis of both, as she breaks the three stages down into smaller movements.
I've done some more study of Rohr's approach today and think it to be a kind of simplified and Christianized Wilberish system. Even his term, "transcend-and-include" is one used very often by Wilber. I'm not fond of using "The Father and I are One" as a stage, as I think that phrase resonates less with a unitive stage than with Jesus' affirmation of divine sonship. None of us can mean that statement as Jesus did.
Check out the link below for more elaboration on Rohr's approach:
I like that he affirms the importance of dogma and doctrine in pointing to the reality beyond words.
He might say they are just fingers pointing towards the moon, but I wonder if they might also be described as rays of sunlight.
Each individual ray will never encapsulate the full radiance of the sun, but to say that even the smallest ray is not from the sun would be false.
|Powered by Social Strata|