142 episodes

Assorted reflections on matters mostly to do with inner life, including spirituality and psychotherapy, consciousness and the divine. For more on see www.markvernon.com

Mark Vernon - Talks and Thoughts Mark Vernon

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 4.8 • 10 Ratings

Assorted reflections on matters mostly to do with inner life, including spirituality and psychotherapy, consciousness and the divine. For more on see www.markvernon.com

    The enchanted vision. An invitation to read about love

    The enchanted vision. An invitation to read about love

    To read the essay, go to Aeon magazine's website, or https://aeon.co/essays/in-the-beginning-there-was-love-we-can-move-with-its-power

    • 5 min
    Matter is frozen light. A conversation with Rupert Sheldrake & Mark Vernon

    Matter is frozen light. A conversation with Rupert Sheldrake & Mark Vernon

    The everyday stuff called matter turns out to be both more fascinating and stranger than we usually assume. In this episode of the Sheldrake-Vernon Dialogues, Rupert Sheldrake and Mark Vernon ask just matter is, beginning with contemporary ideas from quantum physics, in which matter is frozen light, as the physicist David Bohm put it. 

    They consider the relationship between matter and gravity, as well as matter and ancient notions of potentiality, which turn out to be surprising relevant today. 

    The differences between quantity and quality offer another conversational thread, with the discussion also drawing in wider questions, such as the nature of matter within the philosophy of panpsychism, and also the etymological links between matter and mater, or mother, revealing factors about material of which most are unconscious today.

    For more conversations between Rupert and Mark see
    https://www.sheldrake.org/audios/sheldrake-vernon-dialogues
    https://www.markvernon.com/talks

    • 40 min
    Whose revival? Which Christianity? CS Lewis & Owen Barfield on the renewed interest of belief in God

    Whose revival? Which Christianity? CS Lewis & Owen Barfield on the renewed interest of belief in God

    There is much talk of a revival of Christianity amongst secular intellectuals, at least in my cultural bubble. That may or may not be sociological significant and church attendence figures stay in marked decline. But what interests me is not so much the numbers as the spirit of the renewed interest. What is the feel of the Christianity being discussed, what attitudes does it embody, what spiritual does it represent?
    CS Lewis and Owen Barfield discussed these things and, then, Barfield teased out differences between them after Lewis’s death. He characterised that as the difference between an analytic and romantic rationality, which produces separate even oppositional understandings of God, Jesus, salvation, this world, the imagination, the human and the creation as a whole.
    I think that their “oppositional friendship” might illuminate our now, which I try to tease out in this talk.
    Recorded in St Mary Magdalene church, Stapleford Park

    0:00 The revival now and the differences between Lewis and Barfield
    4:25 The Christian story as chasm or participation
    8:08 Salvation or participation?
    11:20 Exclusive Christianity or porous Christianity?
    13:45 The role of reason and the imagination
    17:11 Following the head or the heart?
    21:21 Analytical and Romantic, allegorical and mythological approaches to truth
    27:39 The appeal of Lewis, simplicity and joy
    32:02 Polarities, oppositions and Trinitarian perception
    35:40 Different experiences of time, culture wars and choice
    39:02 What of the future of Christianity?

    • 41 min
    Strangeness is the new real. Martin Shaw & Mark Vernon in conversation

    Strangeness is the new real. Martin Shaw & Mark Vernon in conversation

    A couple of years back, Martin Shaw had a visionary experience that led him to Christianity. We talked about it as the Mossy face of Christ - https://youtu.be/8luN8bDDRBs?si=c7jHUt-Ih5xKlVWq

    So it was great to talk again about what's been happening. Which is much. The conversation ranges over what might be happening now with Christianity, Martin's recent participation in the Symbolic World Summit, the strangeness, weirdness and terror of Christ, being in the world but not of it, and the importance of myths, stories and fairytales.

    We mentioned Martin's new course The Skin-Boat and the Star as a practical manifestation of what has been happening for him. For more on that see here - https://schoolofmyth.com/five-weekend-programme/

    For more on Mark's work see - https://www.markvernon.com

    0:00 The reviving of interest in Christianity
    2:53 Report from the Symbolic World Summit
    6:53 Christ, fairytales and reconnecting with the source
    14:21 How to keep Christianity strange
    21:33 From ideas to encounter
    24:11 Being in the world but not of the world
    29:08 Passions of the soul and Rowan Williams
    37:38 Knowing stories and inhabiting stories
    43:48 From persona to presence
    47:56 Good fruits not good works
    49:26 Martin's new course and the imaginative edge
    52:44 What puts people off Christianity?
    54:01 Proxies for the Spirit
    58:17 Limits and more, growth and depth
    01:04:21 Romanticism coming of age
    01:12:13 Jonathan Pageau, Malcolm Guite, Iain McGilchrist and others on the new course

    • 1 hr 14 min
    Christspiracy. The documentary's claims about Jesus & Christianity put to the test, w Kameron Waters

    Christspiracy. The documentary's claims about Jesus & Christianity put to the test, w Kameron Waters

    The makers of Seaspiracy and Cowspiracy are back. Christspiracy is another profoundly disturbing film detailing the industrial abuse of our animal kin. Expect more horrific carelessness and exploitation on a mass scale. 

    Only this time, Kip Andersen and Kameron Waters not only go global but look back in time. “This is plausibly the most significant new discovery about Jesus Christ, in the last 2,000 years,” says the blurb.

    But can that be right? Has justified outrage at the treatment of our fellow creatures got the better of them? Initially, I wasn't convinced. But then Kameron Waters reached out to me and we had this long conversation.

    See what you think. 

    [Spoiler alert - we thoroughly discuss the Christian details in the film.]

    For more on Christspiracy see https://www.christspiracy.com

    For more on Mark, and his work on early Christianity and Jesus via the ideas of Owen Barfield, friend of CS Lewis, see http://www.markvernon.com/consciousness

    00:00 Introduction
    02:20 Where to see the documentary and how
    04:33 The treatment of animals as a religious concern
    12:26 The prehistory of hunting, sacrifice and temples
    21:15 What did Jesus do when cleansing of the temple?
    34:10 What was the cause of Jesus’s death?
    44:38 Jesus of Nazareth or Jesus the vegetarian Nazarene?
    58:37 Kameron’s own Christian journey
    01:05:42 But did Jesus really not eat fish?
    01:13:40 Ichthus, Pythagoreans and the 153 fish
    01:24:00 What did Paul mean by vegetarians are weak?
    01:31:05 Engaging with the film, engaging with the tradition

    • 1 hr 34 min
    The Nature of Energy. A conversation with Rupert Sheldrake & Mark Vernon

    The Nature of Energy. A conversation with Rupert Sheldrake & Mark Vernon

    Energy is a key organising principle in modern science, the conversation of energy being a grounding and universal law. But what is energy? 
    In this episode of the Sheldrake-Vernon Dialogues, Rupert Sheldrake and Mark Vernon examine the history of the idea and the word. In science, energy is a relatively recently notion, emerging in its current form in the 19th century, drawing much on mechanics. 
    The word itself was coined by Aristotle, in the 4th century BCE, carrying a sense of vital actuality and living presence. That meaning is still remembered in Orthodox theology, which describes the energeia of God. 
    The conversation ranges over the promiscuity of energy in the natural world to the spiritual notion of energy, including the subtle energies of the body. The implications of shaping the idea of energy through mechanical metaphors also has important ramifications, from the descriptions of economics and the efficacy of psychology to the experience of God. 
    Further, the most recent physics argues that energy is not conserved after all as the universe expands.
    For more conversations between Rupert and Mark see:
    https://www.sheldrake.org/audios/sheldrake-vernon-dialogues
    http://www.markvernon.com/talks

    • 36 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
10 Ratings

10 Ratings

Powellmh ,

Michael Powell, the Atlantic Magazine

I very much enjoy listening to this show and it’s humane and nuanced conversations

Top Podcasts In Religion & Spirituality

The Bible in a Year (with Fr. Mike Schmitz)
Ascension
The Bible Recap
Tara-Leigh Cobble
Girls Gone Bible
Girls Gone Bible
BibleProject
BibleProject Podcast
followHIM: A Come, Follow Me Podcast
Hank Smith & John Bytheway
Standard of Truth
Dr. Gerrit Dirkmaat

You Might Also Like

The Sacred
Theos think tank
Rupert Spira Podcast
Rupert Spira
Speaking of Jung: Interviews with Jungian Analysts
Laura London
Wisdom of the Masters
Samaneri Jayasara
Living Myth
Michael Meade
Turning to the Mystics with James Finley
Center for Action and Contemplation