The Maternal Face of God – Richard Rohr


I am so fortunate that today, after 6 years of living abroad, I get to spend mother’s day with my mother! As I have previously written about in a very early post, The Mother Heart of God, mother’s have been very important for my spiritual journey. It was only when I began to see the image of God as a compassionate mother that I have been able to change what I believe God truly is, Love. Sometimes when we are going through hard times all we really need is that mother hug – the all embracing hug that doesn’t judge but loves unconditionally. The mother that asks us to relax in her arms and allows us to just breathe, or sob, or be angry.

Some of us don’t always have a great image of mother – but I find it so amazing how we tend to find mothers all around us. If our biological mother wasn’t the image of love – we usually end up finding a mother that helps guide us along our journey. Mother’s in our lives are guides into the deeper more connected things of life. In the more exhausting moments of the past few months I have had many mothers around me that have let me be me and have embraced me for who I truly am. Today I honor the mothers in my life and I thank God that She truly is a Mother to all, even when we don’t realize it.

The following is today’s daily meditation from Richard Rohr about the Maternal Face of God.

Most people (though not all) have experienced unconditional love not through the image of a man, but through the image of their mother. She therefore became the basis for many people’s eventual God image, presuming it was a good God image. (I am convinced that many people sour on religion because the God they are presented with is actually less loving than their mother and/or father!)

For much of the human race, the mother is the one who parts the veil for us. She gives us that experience of grounding, of intimacy, of tenderness, of safety that most of us hope for from God. However, many people also operate from a toxic and negative image of God. For those people, little that is wonderful is going to happen as long as that is true. Early growth in spirituality is often about healing that inner image, whether male-based or female-based.

Most of us know that God is beyond gender. When we look at the Book of Genesis, we see that the first thing God is looking for is quite simply “images” by which to communicate who-God-is (Genesis 1:26-27). God is not looking for servants, for slaves, or for people who are going to pass loyalty tests. God is just looking for images—“images and likenesses” of the Inner Mystery. Whoever God “is,” is profoundly and essentially what it means to be male and female in perfect balance. We have to find and to trust the feminine face of God and the masculine face of God. Both are true and both are necessary for a full relationship with God. Up to now, we have strongly relied upon the presented masculine images while, in fact, our inner life was more drawn to our mother’s energy. That is much of our religious problem today.

Richard’s Daily Meditations

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