Eps 93: Spiritual Nomad, Brandan Robertson, shares his story

Eps 93: Spiritual Nomad, Brandan Robertson, shares his story

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Rev. Brandan Robertson is a noted spiritual thought-leader, contemplative activist, and commentator, working at the intersections of spirituality, sexuality, and social renewal.

Brandan earned his Bachelors Degree in Pastoral Ministry & Theology from Moody Bible Institute and is pursuing his Masters of Theological Studies from Iliff School of Theology.

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Eps 82: Becoming Wise, my conversation with special guest, Krista Tippett

Eps 82: Becoming Wise, my conversation with special guest, Krista Tippett

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Today, my guest is Krista Tippett.kristatippet
Krista is a Peabody Award-winning broadcaster and New York Times bestselling author. She is the host of On Being, a radio show and podcast distributed to more than 400 stations across the country, a program which often ranks among the top 50 podcasts on iTunes. Krista is the author of several books, including, Becoming Wise: An Inquiry into the Mystery and Art of Living, published in April, 2016.

In 2014, she was awarded the National Humanities Medal at a special ceremony at the White House, and honored by President Barack Obama for “thoughtfully delving into the mysteries of human existence. On the air and in print, Ms. Tippett avoids easy answers, embracing complexity and inviting people of every background to join her conversation about faith, ethics, and moral wisdom.”


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SHOW NOTES

MIN 1

The twist on the question Krista usually asks her guests.

Silvia Borstien

Our children are watching us more than they are listening to us

Learning to not see people with distinctions and to not see people difference.

MIN 5:30

Nostalgic and loving view of religion of the grandfather. Hymns

MIN 7

Her own spiritual practice

Karen Armstrong – my work is my prayer

Krista writing a prayer, bare bones liturgy, gratitude,

“I don’t know what I mean when I say I pray, but there is something essential and grounding about having this as part of my life.”

Prayer is also an orientation to mystery. My prayer now has very little to do with asking for things. via @kristatippettTwitter

MIN 12:00

Going to Divinity School in the 1990s and the life of the mind and keeping the eyes of a journalist on the world. The important issues of theology and human life were discussions that were missing in public life.

MIN 16:00

Religion, politics, and values

MIN 19:30

The puzzle about human beings and doing “what we ought”, and power, agency, and will and choice, and being people of integrity that need cultivation and our need for each other.

MIN 21:30

We can value that we have the knowledge that we know what’s right and we can learn to get companion for ourselves.

MIN 23:00

Does one need to suffer to become wise?

Suffering is not optional. via @kristatippettTwitter Suffering offers rich ground for becoming more wise but it can take generations. via @kristatippettTwitter

MIN 24:30

Krista on her own depression and how it deepened her wisdom.

Suffering is seedbed of wisdom but not the only seedbed of wisdom. via @kristatippettTwitter

MIN 26:00

Hefty wisdom and also the kind of wisdom children possess.

MIN 28:00

How have the wisest people you’ve spoken to continued to learn and grow in wisdom?

Wise people find a way to stay soft in the face of what ever life will present next.via @kristatippettTwitter This lessens the suffering.

MIN 30:00

Hope is borne of struggle

A toughness and courage

MIN 32:00

The connection of Empathy and Wisdom and how it’s embodied.

Wisdom is a quality of presence. via @kristatippettTwitter If we walk through our sufferings and losses desiring to learn from them and to grow and deepen, empathy is a natural effect. via @kristatippettTwitter

MIN 35:00

The most foolish people get all the attention.

As a culture we seem to be growing distance from each other and less empathic–what can be done?

Fear is an empathy killer. via @kristatippettTwitter

We can become paralyzed and think we can’t do anything.

If many of us could take up the calling to be ‘calmers of fear’ and really close to home. via @kristatippettTwitter We really need to be leaning into the better angels of our nature to stand up to the challenges of the 21st century together in common life.Twitter

MIN 39:00

We are talking about work that is stitching a new fabric of common life that has to start at a very personal level.

Being a non-anxious presence for others

MIN 41:00

We are not taught to be a non anxious presence as powerful people or to be powerful this way and we need more postures in our common spaces; and it won’t feel intuitive.

MIN 43:00

Human drama will remain after the (2016) election and we have to be equipping our selves to reckon with that and be present to that.

MIN 44:00

Krista answering the “so what” question for herself in public life and presence in the world and moving away for being the On Being organizational direction.


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Episode 13 – “We cannot encapsulate God in our Theology” guest Doug Jackson

Episode 13 – “We cannot encapsulate God in our Theology” guest Doug Jackson

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Shownotes for Episode 13  Wine lovers have God to thank + guest Doug Jackson


First, I want to feature the book Doug and I wrote …

entitled Dog in the Gap because of a C.S. Lewis quote “Man and his dog close a gap in the universe”.

 

And there’s a BONUS EDITION with lots of goodies!
Read a sample here!


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Thank you! Enjoy the show!

With love,

~Lisa

WINE SEGMENT:

Who do we have to thank for wine?

God and the Church, actually.

Wine lovers in Western civilization have the Church in Europe (and the Roman Empire and the Holy Roman Empire–which was neither holy nor Roman ) to thank for the large-scale production, the prevalence and the excellence of wine!

Why? 

Because liturgy involving wine for communion was central to Christian religious practice. Wine was ingested as the saving holy blood of Christ (and bread as the holy body of Christ), usually each and every day. The sacraments of Communion served as saving grace afforded to the Church.

As Roman Empire became officially a Christian Empire (circa 313 CE) many vineyards had to be planted, properly cultivated, and harvested. Grapes had to be made into a lot of to support the daily practice of communion throughout the Empire.

Communion served as wine was the norm among Christians world-wide until recently–in the era of pasteurization. To keep juice from grapes in a state were they would not ferment meant it had to be sufficiently boiled so the natural yeast would die. 

Vehemently opposed to alcohol, Thomas Bramwell Welch, a physician, dentist, and Methodist pastor from Vineyard, New Jersey, figured out the process in 1869 with Concord grapes. Most churches did not accept the switch as proper and stayed with wine.

The juice later became more popular during Victorian era because of prominent values of abstinence. A shift then began in the U.S. that made grape juice the main communion beverage (at least among certain Protestants sects).

Several hundred vineyards operating in Europe today can trace their history to monastic origins.

In the 9th-15th centuries almost 1,000 monasteries dotted Europe. They were centers of education, stability, and technical innovation. Monks and nuns could read and write–this was quite uncommon then.

Monasteries cared for the sick, helped the poor, created places of education, and invented Universities. They could not fund all this through donations. Surplus wine was sold to finance ministry work (and also beer, fruit brandies, and cheese, among many other things..even prayers and Salvation ..which–in hindsight–appears to have been a mistake ) .

So, basically, thank God (and many monks) for wine!


 

Sparking your muse

 Enjoy the fantastic chat with Doug Jackson!

Doug-Jackson

Douglas Jackson, D.Min.
Director of the Logsdon Seminary Graduate Program

Doug Jackson came to SCS in 2006, after serving as pastor of Second Baptist Church, Corpus Christi, since 1993. In addition to teaching courses, Dr. Jackson functions as a liaison between Logsdon Seminary and local churches in Corpus Christi. His areas of specialization include spiritual formation and pastoral ministry. Dr. Jackson has published and presented several articles and essays in religious and literary venues, including articles and lectures on the life and writings of C.S. Lewis.
• D.Min. – Truett Seminary (2006)
• M.Div. – Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary (1985)
• B.A. – English Literature, Grand Canyon College (1982)

His blog is here.


 

Interview / chat notes:

 

MIN 8:00
on Doug preparing for a his Fall class.

A resource he is using by NT Wright – “The new perspective on Paul”
The covenant people God has saved.

8:50
Reformers and the necessary correction in contemporary times.

9:00
Confronting individualism
and thoughts on human flourishing.

9:50
on the idea of being “spiritual but not religious”

10:30
on his work about CS Lewis

Mere Christianity

11:00
The importance of imagination for understanding that isn’t covered by rationalism.

12:30
on his Oxford lecture
Owen Barfield an influential life-long friend of CS Lewis

Another lecture on Walter Miller – A Canticle for Leibowitz
Apologetic self-proclaimed validity on the rational scheme of knowing.

“Scholarship is about knowing more and more about less and less so that eventually you know everything about nothing.”

14:30
James Sire

15:70
Malcolm Guite https://www.facebook.com/malcolm.guite
Chaplain of Gerton college and Cambridge
“Faith Hope and Poetry”

He covers the imagination as a way of knowing (an epistemology).

Holly Ordway
Houston Baptist University
“Not God’s Type”

Her 2-track movement toward conversion

18:00
Brainpickings.com Maria Popova (an admitted secular atheist on a continual spiritual search)

19:00
on Spiritual atheism

….if we come up with a system that covers everything (Christians and Atheists alike)…

“Humans are sensitive and emotionally vulnerable to a wasteful degree evolutionarily speaking…highly valuing the arts.” (Lisa)

Christ in the Desert Benedictine Monk and Abbot
Philip Lawrence, New Mexico
…slipping in and out of atheism….

21:30
HG Wells, and the fundamentalist reaction to him and others of his ilk.

on how science and religious circles have had an absolute unwillingness to be in one another presence and (have not wanted) to admit any weaknesses and (instead) just shout louder.

22:20

“The best apologetics can do is make Christianity credible and I don’t think it can make it inevitable.”

 

22:30 “Any belief in any ideal is still a leap of faith for anyone… like Justice, Love, Hope…” (Lisa)

23:30
on How people appeal to a standard outside themselves. (CS Lewis)

24:00
Theories of “survival behavior value” for Morality and Justice kicks the can. or it lands on simple absurdity and meaninglessness where suicide becomes a valid option.

25:00

Doug answering the question….”Is fundamentalism evolving”?

26:00
Richard Foster’s classic over 50 years old “Celebration of Discipline”

27:20
A story of a crucial pivot point for Doug.

28:20
How the psalmists had to cry out to God when the answers didn’t suffice any longer. For us, this is a return more than a departure.”

“I have gained the gift of being able to respect other traditions and admire things they bring us, but I talk to people across that spectrum that have that experience.”

29:30

“We go from trusting our denominational address or theology address to trusting Christ but it doesn’t mean an abandonment of it. Choosing a room in the same house to live in.”

30:10
Spiritual disciplines most meaningful to him:
On solitude and privacy (the difference). Henri Nouwen explains the difference.
 Henri Nouwen explains in “Out of Solitude” 

Doug: Solitude is for battle. Privacy is to be alone.

31:00
Demons come in our solitude (Desert Fathers). The outcome is awareness and purification.

32:00
Wanting “the listening heart” (what Solomon really asked God for).
on the importance of listening to God…

33:30
My Stockholm syndrome at parties. (Lisa)

34:00

“(My) Inability to be with people was driven by a failure to have a real self.”

34:30
“you are nearer to me than my own self.” Augustine

Doug realized:

“My real Self can’t be with people because it’s threatened by them, because they’re going to colonize my Self and going to make me into something I’m not. As opposed to having a real Self that can listen because God is protecting that Self.”

Father Francis Kelly Nemeck wrote
The way of Spiritual Direction (his director)
…Doug and I discuss Detachment and Holy Indifference…

39:00
St John of the Cross
(Exploring the spiritually obscured times and darker emotions.)

“the nada” (God is “no thing” the silence before God

40:00
…on staying in the problems and not panicking.

41:00
…on the crucial lesson from his mom that revealed his theology

44:30
(unknowing) Apophetic theology

“John of the Cross didn’t want that we should abandon the metaphors but move through them.”

45:00

“We cannot encapsulate God in our Theology.”

(which is terrifying but life-giving)

46:00
[GOOD NEWS]
Further exploration in a future episode of John of the Cross with Doug coming soon!


 

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Watch for new episodes each Hump Day (Wednesday).

Guest writer at Everyday Liturgy

ELI’m very glad to have the honor of being the guest writer today at Thomas Turner’s blog:

Everyday Liturgy

Thomas wrote me saying,

I would love for you to contribute a 500 word (or so) post about how participating in a particular church or denomination has helped make you the Christian you are today. The purpose of this series is largely ecumenical, and looks at the positive you gleaned out of the experience. If you had a bad experience that turned into something good later on, I would think you could make a great post out of that…

Some of you may not know just how fundamentalist my roots are.

Here’s but one example:

Several people approached my mom to discourage her from marrying my dad. Why?

Because their offspring would be bi-racial.

Plenty of (fundamentalist) Christian groups at the time prohibited “inter-racial” dating and (obviously) marriage and pro-creation.

Southern Baptists were the slave-owning southerns who coined their monicker at the time of the American Civil War (to them known as “The War of the Northern Aggression”). Northern Baptists, as they were once called, later changed their name to American Baptist and became (typically) more progressive and liberal in their views over time.

Southern Baptists proliferated to many places outside of the the South (to the American North and through missionary work, to all parts of the world), but kept their name and, as you might guess, some of their same notions.

(To be fair, things have changed for the better, mostly. Today, folks in churches coming from that tradition run the gamut of very strict and conservative… “old school patriarchal imperialist southern” -if you will- to more gracious and relaxed in their dogma on issues of race, gender, and other matters.)

(By the way, my dad was Puerto Rican. Are you curious to see what he looked like? Here. Like most conversations about “race” –as if that was an actual thing– it’s really just vestige of a medieval mindset and a preoccupation about skin tones and/or physical features. Sadly, it still is and by people you would imagine would know better. But, I’ll tackle that in some other post.)

I wonder how many of them were relieved that I ended up having my mom’s light skin. 

(This is were Obama and I are alike. Like me, he actually looks more like his mom than his dad. Trust me, it’s true. I notice these things! :) )

 

So, what was my journey and where do I stand now?

Give it a read and find out!

2nd Sunday of Advent: Short Meditation

public domain photo (NYC)

Scripture reading: Mark 1:1-8

 

To John:

Reverberate in the sparse places

Collect your wild honey

Prepare the way, ready your heart

Wash and be seen

Your King is coming

Your Savior

Your hope is come

He is on the move

In the wilderness, in the wilds.

 

(This poem is released into the public domain. It may be used and distributed freely. ) Remember to share (public art) or give away your own art during Advent this year. Read more info for this Artists Advent Project here.

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