Friends, I am so pleased to announce that I will be one of the co-hosts of a new podcast — debuting later this fall — called Encountering Silence.
I’m collaborating with Cassidy Hall, co-producer of the documentary film In Pursuit of Silence, and Kevin Johnson, Catholic theologian and director of the Inner Room, a contemplative community based in Connecticut. Kevin and I have been friends via social media for a number of years, finding each on Twitter I believe, when we first realized that we shared an interest in the writings of the Anglican solitary Maggie Ross. It was Maggie who suggested to Kevin that he reach out to the director and producers of In Pursuit of Silence, and as soon as I discovered that Cassidy shared my love for all things Trappist, we were instant friends.
The three of us have been enjoying an ongoing conversation via phone and social media (those two have met on several occasions, but I still have yet to encounter either of them in real life), on topics ranging from theology, to arts and culture, to the challenges of making a living when your heart belongs to contemplation, etc. But our discourse always seemed to circle back around to the one topic that initially drew us together: silence.
None of us can remember who first had the brilliant (crazy?) idea that we should be recording ourselves, but in that inspired (?) moment, the idea for Encountering Silence was born.
Our hope is that the podcast will explore the beauty and importance of silence from many angles, not just the religious/spiritual/mystical, but also reflecting on the psychology of silence, silence and the arts, silence and politics, silence and education… the list goes on. For a topic that we often don’t devote a lot of time and energy to, silence certainly has an important (if quiet!) role in all our lives.
Anyway, the idea for the podcast has been percolating for about two years now, but this summer Kevin began a conversation with a podcast company called Breadbox Media. Breadbox has agreed to host us, so that got us into high gear and this past Monday we recorded a pilot episode. Assuming it meets Breadbox’s needs, we could be launching the podcast in the next few months — January at the latest.
Still a lot of details to work out: how frequently we’ll be recording, who we’ll be interviewing, how long the episodes will be, and so forth. But it is our plan to make the podcast a regular part of our online presence, so if you are a subscriber to my blog you’ll receive notifications when it is launched.
If you want just a little taste of what this podcast will be like, we’ve created a “teaser trailer” — sort of a behind-the-scenes glimpse of our recording process. In it you will be impressed by our professionalism, how organized we are, and especially how humble I am!
Check it out:
When the podcast launches, it will have its own page at www.encounteringsilence.net. If you want, you can visit that page now and sign up to be notified when the podcast launches.
Do you have any suggestions for Cassidy, Kevin and me, as we begin recording Encountering Silence? Any topics you’d like to see us cover, or questions about silence you’d like for us to explore? Please let us know! Leave a comment here or at the Encountering Silence Facebook Page.
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