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The Universal Christ

How a Forgotten Reality Can Change Everything We See, Hope for, and Believe
Written by: Richard Rohr
Narrated by: Arthur Morey
Length: 8 hrs and 45 mins
4 out of 5 stars (12 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

New York Times Best Seller

From one of the world’s most influential spiritual thinkers, a long-awaited book exploring what it means that Jesus was called “Christ”, and how this forgotten truth can restore hope and meaning to our lives.

“Anyone who strives to put their faith into action will find encouragement and inspiration in the pages of this book.” (Melinda Gates)

In his decades as a globally recognized teacher, Richard Rohr has helped millions realize what is at stake in matters of faith and spirituality. Yet Rohr has never written on the most perennially talked about topic in Christianity: Jesus. Most know who Jesus was, but who was Christ? Is the word simply Jesus’s last name? Too often, Rohr writes, our understandings have been limited by culture, religious debate, and the human tendency to put ourselves at the center.

Drawing on scripture, history, and spiritual practice, Rohr articulates a transformative view of Jesus Christ as a portrait of God’s constant, unfolding work in the world. 

“God loves things by becoming them,” he writes, and Jesus’s life was meant to declare that humanity has never been separate from God - except by its own negative choice. When we recover this fundamental truth, faith becomes less about proving Jesus was God, and more about learning to recognize the Creator’s presence all around us, and in everyone we meet.

Thought-provoking, practical, and full of deep hope and vision, The Universal Christ is a landmark book from one of our most beloved spiritual writers, and an invitation to contemplate how God liberates and loves all that is.

©2019 Richard Rohr (P)2019 Random House Audio

What the critics say

"Rohr sees the Christ everywhere, and not just in people. He reminds us that the first incarnation of God is in Creation itself, and he tells us that 'God loves things by becoming them.' Just for that sentence, and there are so many more, I cannot put this book down." (Bono)

“Fr. Richard challenges us to search beneath the surface of our faith and see what is sacred in everyone and everything. Anyone who strives to put their faith into action will find encouragement and inspiration in the pages of this book." (Melinda Gates, author of The Moment of Lift)

"A major shift in our culture is needed, and Richard Rohr's unpacking of The Universal Christ is a critical step in the right direction. Remembering our connection to 'every thing' has implications for our religious traditions, society - and dare I say it - even our politics." (Kirsten Powers, CNN political analyst and USA Today columnist)

What listeners say about The Universal Christ

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Most thorough book on the Christ I've ever read...

I think the best thing about this book was how Rohr confirmed for me many things that I have begun to see as I have deconstructed and reconstructed my faith. Today's church needs to evolve beyond the 1500's with many of it's doctrines and embrace the true message of God/Jesus which is love.

1 person found this helpful

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a complete shift in thinking

Truth will always be found by those seeking it. The fear that truth might not be what you want to hear keeps many willfully ignorant of it.

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  • Tim Hyatt
  • 2019-04-27

Don’t read this book if you want to be the same after reading it.

This book has changed my life. It took 13 years from the beginning of my journey away from the church to get to a place where I could begin to see the opportunity for trust in God again in my life. I had to give up everything I was taught and thought I understood to get to this place. I read several books that facilitated that progression including: Love Wins, True self False Self, Centering Prayer, The Divine Dance, and now this book. Through reading this books and contemplative prayer I realize that I need to unlearn what I thought was truth and reframe everything. Now I am pursuing non-dual thinking, getting in the flow” and I can allow experience and scripture to be my teacher. In this book Richard Rohr shows us a grand landscape of possibilities regarding the concept of the Cosmic Christ and it helped me see how I can follow Christ and allow the Divine to flow through me toward others.

16 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2019-07-04

Off the Reservation

I am a fan of Fr. Richard Rohr, which is why I bought this book. I especially appreciate his perspectives on contemplation. I've also learned to be tolerant when Fr. Rohr "pushes the Christian/Catholic envelope" with some of his speculations. With all that said, I was very disappointed with this book. I believe that Fr. Rohr has gone too far with his theologizing and speculation in this book. There are moments of brilliant insight, but they are unfortunately drowned out with a multitude of theological perspectives that border on heresy and even come across as polemic at times. This is especially disappointing since Fr. Rohr is a great proponent of non-dualistic thinking. He seems to want to replace (dispose of) Original Sin with Original Goodness without providing a solid theological basis for the natural/practiced evil that obviously pervades our world. He also dismisses the entire notion that God is both loving and yet just. Instead of embracing the traditional, non-dualistic perspective of a God who is both loving and just, he dismisses all notions of a just God. As is the case in most of his writings, there is no shortage of criticism of traditional Catholic positions. His basic thesis on Christ representing God's immanence in nature was intriguing, but it was drowned out by a lot of other craziness. Disappointed that Fr. Rohr seems to have lost his sense of humility in this book. He comes across as "having it all figured out" - always a dangerous position.

13 people found this helpful

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  • End of Life Midwife
  • 2019-04-11

Consciousness expanding and exhilarating

Everything in this book, about love, God, christ and consciousness, was previously shown to me during a near death experience 14 years ago. I returned to the physical world with a cosmic perspective and understanding and felt enlightened for several days afterward, but slowly began to lose my grasp on this way of seeing because it is so incredibly different than the agreed upon collective "reality", or materialist world view which I was (as we all are) deeply entrenched. The greatest among many other great sorrows, seeing from this perspective then having it clouded again seemed a cruel joke and left me questioning my sanity and the reality of divinity. I prayed to be shown, once again, all that had been revealed to me so that I might remember and serve others with my remembering. Time passed and I had forgotten that prayerful wish, only to realize while listening, that this book fully confirms and clarifies things I once knew to be true. Whether I was led to it or stumbled upon it can be debated, however it is most certainly an answer to my prayer. Our world can be heaven on Earth, if only we choose to see it through our own Christ like vision, and love all with our own Christ like love.

11 people found this helpful

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  • New Yorker
  • 2019-03-20

Life Giving & Life Changing

Richard Rohr presents excellent ideas in a clear and well supported way. He helps the reader to think in a new way about the the most important things in life. I believe his teaching provides real hope for our future.

13 people found this helpful

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  • Jack
  • 2019-03-10

Hear the Rohr

This is Richard Rohr at his best. Challenging the current Christian norms with the prophetic wisdom of the scriptures. Should be mandatory reading for all who claim Christ.

12 people found this helpful

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  • Kael Sagheer
  • 2019-06-15

So very good!!!

I was first disappointed that I would not be able to hear Rohr’s voice, which deeply resonates with me, but Arthur Morey is excellent and he brings RR’s words to life. An absolute must read for those in search of Love and Grace...in themselves and in the world. And if you love this, Falling Upward and The Art of Letting Go are also excellent.

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  • Bill Dudley
  • 2019-05-21

Excellent

This is the best religious book I’ve ever read. I wish everyone would listen to the message.

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  • Channing Black
  • 2019-05-09

Life changing

A very eye opening book. I grew up Southern Baptist. It was easy to leave the “church” because after some bad decisions I felt I was already removed from Jesus. Religion has good intentions but it has too many human finger prints on it. This made me realize God never left me. I don’t criticize those of my past, they had the best intentions. Unfortunately, that does not mean they were right. My understanding of the scripture and overall meaning of Christ has been greatly changed because of this book.

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  • tony osuya
  • 2019-05-23

This is a must read.

After listening to this audio book. I see God everywhere. The language is simple to understand. It births a respect also for other religious cultures.

3 people found this helpful

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  • papa k
  • 2019-05-07

Most Important Book - Ever

If I had one book of wisdom to give my children, or anyone, it is Rohr’s Universal Christ. I have waited my whole life for this book, and I will continue to live my whole life through this book.

1 person found this helpful