Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Mark Greiner, Interview #101

Name: Mark Greiner

Where you live: Takoma Park, Maryland (next to Washington, DC)

What you do as a vocation or avocation?
Vocation: contemplative Christian, husband, father, and Presbyterian pastor.

Avocation: playful potter, hiking

Your two favorite books:
Only two?
“Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander” by Thomas Merton
“An Interrupted Life” by Etty Hillesum

Your two favorite songs:
“Berliner Messe” by Arvö Part
“Endless Chain” by Metamora

Why you are interested in spirituality?
Jesus' intimacy with his Abba ( in John 17, the Message version) when he prays:
“I'm saying these things in the world's hearing
So my people can experience my joy completed in them…
I'm praying not only for my disciples today
But also for those who will believe in me
Because of them and their witness about me.
The goal is for all of them to become one heart and mind—
Just as you, Father, are in me and I in you,
So they might be one heart and mind with us.”

Your favorite quote:
     "Give over thine own willing; give over thine own running; give over thine own desiring to know, or to be any thing, and sink down to the seed which God sows in the heart; and let that grow in thee, and be in thee, and breathe in thee, and act in thee, and thou shalt find by sweet experience, that the Lord knows that, and loves and owns that, and will lead it to the inheritance of life, which is his portion. And as thou takest up the cross to thyself, and sufferest that to overspread and become a yoke over thee, thou shalt become renewed, and enjoy life, and everlasting inheritance in that." --Isaac Pennington (1745-1817, a Quaker)

Your favorite web sites:
Eloquence on sustainability, ecology, culture and agriculture.
Essential reading for our day:

News and opinion, leaning left, voicing sanity in the maelstrom:

Biblical Commentary and liturgy:

Contemplative Church extraordinaire:

“He who laughs, lasts.” - Mary Pettibone Poole :

Your hero?
Any human being who freely and fully embraces his or her own life (and community) with its limitations and possibilities.

A spiritual lesson you hope to learn?
Suffering = Pain + Resistance

A place in the world where you feel spiritually "connected?"
Within the creek, near my home, boulders invite me to sit, breathe, smell, listen, and look through the changing seasons. The creek has many moods. The creek connects with everything.

Church website:

"Be astonished! Be astounded! For I am doing things
among you that you would not believe if you were told." Habakkuk 1:5

Friday, August 20, 2010

Paul Rademacher, Interview #100

Name: Paul Rademacher

Where you live: Charlottesville, VA and Fernandina Beach, FL

What you do as a vocation or avocation? Writer and Executive Director of The Monroe Institute

Your two favorite books: The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon and Communion by Whitley Strieber

Your two favorite songs: “Embryonic Journey” Jefferson Airplane and “Amelia” by Joni Mitchel + about a hundred others.

Why you are interested in spirituality?
     In my young adult life I had two mystical experiences that opened up new worlds for me – once when I was hitchhiking across the USA and once when I fell off of a roof and fractured my hip. After entering into these realms of wonder there is no turning back and no way to let it go. I came to The Monroe Institute and was able to touch the metaphysical world in ways that were far beyond my imagination or ability to convey through words.

Your favorite quote: I couldn’t limit it to one. These are all from Woody Allen. If only I could be so witty:

“More than any time in history mankind faces a crossroads. One path leads to despair and utter hopelessness, the other to total extinction. Let us pray that we have the wisdom to choose correctly.”

“I took a speed-reading course and read War and Peace in twenty minutes. It involves Russia.”

“I was thrown out of college for cheating on the metaphysics exam; I looked into the soul of the boy next to me.”

Your favorite web sites: (Come on! I’ve got to say this. We put a lot of money into it!)

Your hero(ine): Tina Fey, then Jesus

A spiritual lesson you hope to learn?
To be content and joyous in all circumstances. Failing that, to have wisdom enough to discern who I can blame.

A place in the world where you feel spiritually "connected?" Walking on the beach, Amelia Island, FL

You can read more about Paul's work at: