Saturday, February 21, 2009

Becky Garrison, Interview #76

Name: Becky Garrison

Where you live: New York, NY

What you do as a vocation or avocation? Religious satirist

Your two favorite books: I can't narrow down my library to just two favorites. The Bible is the one book I "try" to read every day.

Your two favorite songs: That's a sheer impossibility - lately, I've been chilling to the musical gifts offered by the artists collective Proost UK (

Why you are interested in spirituality? I always find myself getting so busy that my prayer life keeps falling into the theological toilet once again. Whenever I get too disconnected from God, I always end up with this religious rash as though I'm suffering from some devotional disease. I end up walking around bowlegged like I have a case of the spiritual rickets. Reconnecting through God through prayer, ritual or even just a solitary walk in the woods helps me to start walking along this admitted crooked path. I'll never have all the answers but the more I talk with God, I learn to start asking the right questions.

Your favorite quote: "Every day people are straying away from the church and going back to God."-Lenny Bruce

Your favorite web sites: Here's a few sites that help me think, laugh and love ...
The Jesus Manifesto
Jonny Baker
Naked Pastor
The Ongoing Adventures of ASBO Jesus
The Revealer
Tall Skinny Kiwi
Wittenburg Door (Yes, we're on extended hiatus but like Arnold, we'll be back).

Your hero? Mary Magdalene - Even though the disciples dismissed her firsthand account of Jesus as nonsense, she stuck to her guns. (See Luke 24:11) Their initial lack of respect for her demonstrates how women were perceived in first century Judea. You'd have to be one gutsy gal to go against the cultural milieu of the times. BTW-I'm going to go medieval on anyone, who dared to call Mary Magdalene a prostitute.

A spiritual lesson you hope to learn? Righteous anger, which is one of the best weapons in the satirist's arsenal, can eat me alive if I'm not careful. Jesus must look at some of my moves and shake his head. But then he takes me in his arms and loves me. Why can't I do likewise to those who let me down? As much as I want to be the humble tax collector, I often come off as the self-righteous judgmental Pharisee. (SeeLuke 18:9-14) Time after time, I fail to put the Greatest Commandment into practice. I hate when I get in the way.

A place in the world where you feel spiritually "connected?" While I attend a number of alternative worship/emerging services, it is on the water where I truly worship. I really seem to connect to God when I'm seeped in her handiwork albeit through fly-fishing, kayaking, or walking on the beach.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Sharon M. Jones, Interview #75

Name: Sharon M. Jones

Where you live: Hayward, California

What you do as a vocation or avocation? I wear a few hats. Primarily I am a mother, wife, Nonfiction Author, Gospel Recording Artist, Inspirational Motivational Speaker, Evangelist, teacher, preacher and multi-level Leader in my church on a local, district and state level. To sum it all up, I use my voice to empower and inspire people.

Your two favorite books: She Found It In The Clouds, The Holy Bible - King James Version

Your two favorite songs: "Believe in Miracles" and "Hope Song"

Why you are interested in spirituality? I am interested in spirituality because spirituality is my foundation and a major part of who I am as a human being. Spirituality is within me and dictates my day to day movements, thoughts, goals, accomplishments and purpose.

Your favorite quote: "All things are possible, if I can only believe"

Your favorite web sites:
Your hero? my father, Dr. J. A. Williams

A spiritual lesson you hope to learn? Because my life has been Divinely ordained, I have a responsibility to God and to myself to be the best human being I can be, and to strive to reach my maximum potential, simply because I impact people on a day to day basis either positively or negatively.

A place in the world where you feel spiritually "connected?" Jamaica, West Indies, and my back yard

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Chintamani Yogi, Interview #74

Name: Chintamani Yogi

Where you live: Nepal
What you do as a vocation or avocation? teaching and social work
Your two favorite books: Geeta and books of Swami Vivekananda.

Your two favorite songs: 'Raghupati Raghav Raja Ram'(it's composed by Gandhi) and 'Nam Shivaya...

Why you are interested in spirituality? because it gives ultimate satisfaction to our life; spirituality makes us closer to our own heart and gives completeness to our life. Similarly, it's the only way to save humanity and enjoy the life.

Your favorite quote:
"Arise, Awake, Stop not,till the goal is reached" (from Upanishad)

Your favorite web sites: many... ones which work for value based education, peace, and spirituality and serving poorest people

Your hero?
Mahatma Gandhi, The Dalai Lama, Mother Teresa, Yogananda, Martin Luther King.

A spiritual lesson you hope to learn? serving humanity through spirituality...

A place in the world where you feel spiritually "connected?"

when I see children I feel more connected with spirituality and when I see poor people crying then I feel I'm there with them; similarly, when I see open sky, shining stars, smiling moon then I feel more connected with spirituality...

Monday, February 16, 2009

Leo Kim, Interview #73

Name: Leo Kim

Where you live: Carlsbad, CA (north San Diego county)

What you do as a vocation or avocation? I read novels and scientific articles/books as well as exercise such as weight lifting.

Your two favorite books: The Hard Way by Lee Child and In Defense of Foods: An Eater’s Manifesto by Michael Pollan

Your two favorite songs: Music of the Night (Andrew Lloyd Webber) and Bridge over Troubled Waters by Simon and Garfunkel

Why you are interested in spirituality? Definitely, it is the focus and message of my book, Healing the Rift

Your favorite quote:

"There is no difficulty that enough love will not
conquer, no disease that enough love will not heal, no
door that enough love will not open, no gulf that
enough love will not bridge, no wall that enough love
will not throw down, no sin that enough love will not
redeem… A sufficient realization of love will dissolve
it all. If only you could love enough you would be the
happiest and most powerful person in the world…" --Emmet Fox

Your favorite web sites: and

Your hero? Any one who can turn negatives into positives, anyone who cherishes life and spirit, anyone who can heal rifts.
A spiritual lesson you hope to learn? Improved modalities in which I can communicate spirituality to the non-spiritual

A place in the world where you feel spiritually "connected?" That place in my mind (not brain) where I turn off the noise of everyday chatter and trivia and which connects me to my spiritual self.

Author of Healing the Rift: Bridging the Gap Between Science & Spirituality

Radio Show Host: The Leo Kim Show Radio Network

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Steffan Postaer, Interview #72

Name: Steffan Postaer

Where you live: Chicago, Ill

What you do as a vocation or avocation? A copywriter by trade, and now the Chief Creative Officer of a large advertising agency, my avocation is (still) writing. Right now I am completely captivated by keeping my blog, The Gods of Advertising. Here, I discuss trying to "do the right thing" in a business so often predicated on doing otherwise. The theme for my blog: We make you want what you don’t need. What’s fascinating and, in turn, scary about advertising is that we play fast and loose with most of the seven deadly sins: lust, greed, envy, sloth and so on. How then can we stay on a spiritual path? This paradox is at the heart of my writing.

Your two favorite books: Of recent memory, two books stand out: "Revolutionary Road" and "Saturday."

Your two favorite songs: Most anything by U2, whose music is all about searching for a higher power: "Where the Streets have no Name" and "Original of the Species" stand out.

Why you are interested in spirituality? As stated above, I am trying to do the right thing in a business –a world, really- where doing otherwise is valued. I am also a recovering alcoholic, and spirituality is a cornerstone to staying sober. They say we have a thinking problem as much as a drinking problem. Only a higher power can restore us to sanity.

Your favorite quote: In order to win you have to learn to surrender –a paraphrase of AA axiom.
Your favorite web sites: I go to Amazon more than any other. Alas, I also spend a great deal of time on various trade blogs, some of them unsavory.

Your hero? Bono. How he stays true to his God surrounded by temptation is a miracle.

A spiritual lesson you hope to learn? To give up self-seeking.

A place in the world where you feel spiritually "connected?" When I’m in the 3rd mile of my morning run.
To see Steffan's blog & web site please see: and

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Diana Spechler, Interview #71

Name: Diana Spechler

Where you live: New York City

What you do as a vocation or avocation? I'm a writer. My debut novel is called Who By Fire. Your two favorite books: It depends on the day! Right now I'm a big fan of Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates and Mystery Ride by Robert Boswell.

Your two favorite songs: Abandoned Love by Bob Dylan and Brokedown Palace by The Grateful Dead

Why you are interested in spirituality? I'm interested in people. People's religious and spiritual decisions are so character-revealing!

Your favorite quote: "It is a night when kings in golden suits ride elephants over the mountains." It's the last line of a John Cheever story called The Country Husband.

Your favorite website:

Your hero? I'm not sure I have a hero. I'm accepting applications.

A spiritual lesson you hope to learn? I'd like to learn more about finding balance in life.

A place in the world where you feel spiritually "connected?" Sometimes in Jerusalem, sometimes not.

Please become my fan on Facebook!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Mary Kenagy Mitchell, Interview #70

Name: Mary Kenagy Mitchell

Where you live: Seattle, Washington

What you do as a vocation or avocation? I'm the managing editor if Image (, a journal of art and faith.

Your two favorite books: Gilead by Marilynne Robinson and The Road by Cormac McCarthy. And Great Expectations. And anything by Alice Munro.

Your two favorite songs: "Tower of Song" by Leonard Cohen and "What a Friend We Have in Jesus"
Why you are interested in spirituality? I don't think I could survive without God extending grace to me everyday.
Your favorite quote: "How wrong Emily Dickinson was! Hope is not 'the thing with feathers.' The thing with feathers has turned out to be my nephew. I must take him to see a specialist in Zurich." --Woody Allen
Your favorite web sites:

Your hero? Marilynne Robinson

A spiritual lesson you hope to learn? Patience and humility

A place in the world where you feel spiritually "connected?" At mass, anywhere in the world, in the grandest cathedral or dumpiest suburban church: that's what I love about mass, that it can be anywhere.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Eileen Malone, Interview #69

Name: Eileen Malone
Where you live: In the coastal fog at the edge of San Francisco Bay.
What you do as a vocation or avocation? Teacher. Writer. TV interview show Host/Producer. Literary Competition Founder/Director. Mental Health Activist.
Your two favorite books?
National Velvet
by Enid Bagnold which I loved as a little girl and still love today and almost any books containing the collected and/or selected works of living poets.
Your two favorite songs?
What comes to mind right now is “The White Cliffs of Dover” which always touches me deeply, makes me teary eyed and “I Am What I Am” which makes me want to sing along dancing around the room.
I love (!!) sound tracks from movies, the full orchestra thrumming and mood-making symphonies, like that of Harry Potter, House of Spirits, Ryan’s Daughter. Especially love the score from the original Star Wars and Black Hole.

Why are you interested in spirituality?Everyone is spiritual in their own way, calling it different things and manifesting it different ways. We can’t always define it, recognize it or avoid it ,so might as well open up and embrace it, whatever it is.

Your favorite quote?“When in doubt, choose to do the kind thing.” Don’t know where it came from but right now it’s my slogan.

Your favorite web sites?Of course, because it represents a personal project that means a lot to me. Also, because I made and maintain the website myself and if you knew how low-tech I am, you would see what a miracle that is.
Also, which is the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill, a very important and vital source for those dealing with mental illness of their own and/or those they love and care about. The more informed we all become, the less stigma and fear. There is a community. There is support.
And for just about all their teaching/tutoring videos. Excellent!

Your hero?
Don’t believe in heroes or superstars or saints. Believe we all at some point perform such acts but wouldn’t want to label any human being, alive or dead, with such an impossible reputation to maintain. But I do honor those who give back to the greater flow from which we all derive.

A spiritual lesson you hope to learn?
Don’t know that I could name specifically any spiritual lesson I hope to learn, but do know that I love to learn. And the lessons are everywhere if I just open to them.

A place in the world where you feel spiritually "connected?"
Edges. Places where the land meets the sea, the mountain meets the valley, the forest the lake, edges of places, beaches, cliffs, peninsulas, estuaries. Yes, edges.