Earlier this month, Mormon Matters released its 500th episode. In this two-part podcast, host Dan Wotherspoon speaks about the show’s evolution, but mostly he re-introduces some of the major themes and angles of approach to Mormonism and personal faith journeys–ideas, analogies, and framings that have come up fairly regularly in the show’s history, either directly or in passing as its panel discussions centered on specific topics.
We hope long-time listeners as well as those less familiar with the podcast and its basic sensibilities will find it fun to re-immerse in topics such as the importance of answering the call to explore one’s faith more deeply, to begin the quests of what Joseph Campbell has labeled the “hero’s journey,” to examine the different types of truth in play within human lives and how asking religion or spirituality questions solely from another field and its methodologies will never yield fully satisfying answers. To revisit Father David Steindl-Rast’s analogy of how religions begin and take their shape by comparing their starts to the eruption of a volcano and what transpires over time following the bursts.
In another section, Dan concentrates on various ways to approach scripture that might enliven them for us once more, should our current ways of reading and encountering the material in them have begun to wax cold–and he then suggests how these same approaches might also revive the way we look at and the gifts we receive through our prayer lives, temple attendance, and so forth. He then takes on questions and issues so many of us face as we as individuals interact with institutions. How do we honor both our wants and needs as well as those of the Church? What can we learn from realizing the reality of these different types of goals and how this de-fangs in some way the negativity that can be generated as they end up, as so often they do, at cross-purposes? How can we protect ourselves from being swallowed up by the institution and losing our connection with God and the primacy of our own journey and growth?
We hope you’ll enjoy this trip down memory lane, and its refreshers about important themes and sensibilities that often play out within Mormon Matters discussions!
Colorado Faith Forums website. Learn about its annual symposium, 15 September 2018, Parker, Colorado
Mormon Matters Retreat, 12-14 October, Salt Lake City. Click here for details, registration information, and about scholarships to attend or to help others attend.
Other links to things mentioned on the podcast (past shows, articles) forthcoming