The Martyrdom of Thomas Merton: An Investigation

Heart failure, accident, or murder? John Shuck interviews Hugh Turley about the mysterious death of Thomas Merton.

Investigative Reporter, Hugh Turley, makes the case that the conclusion that Thomas Merton died by accident cannot possibly be true. Hugh Turley and David Martin are co-authors of the 2018 book, The Martyrdom of Thomas Merton, An Investigation.

John Shuck speaks live with Hugh Turley on Beloved Community about the death of Thomas Merton, who was an anti-war author and spiritual leader. He died mysteriously on December 10th, 1968 in Thailand.

“Merton was in apparent good health and at the height of his productive powers when he died suddenly and mysteriously while attending a monastic conference, on December 10th, 1968, near Bangkok, Thailand. He was 53 years old. Up to now, no one has examined the circumstances of his death systematically, critically, and what is most important honestly. That is our purpose here.” p. 2.

Hugh Turley, as a volunteer columnist for the Hyattsville Life and Times was winner of the National Newspaper Association award for best serious column, small circulation, non-daily division.

Book’s website – The Martyrdom of Thomas Merton.

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Biblical Mythology and Wholeheartedness

From the Progressive Spirit Archives, here are two interviews from 2012 and 2013.

Cultural Anthropologist, Carol Delaney discusses her book, Abraham on Trial: The Social Legacy of Biblical Myth. Dr. Delaney explores the roots of patriarchy by asking the question, what gave Abraham the right to sacrifice Isaac?  What is the legacy of this myth on the way we regard children today?

Brene Brown is the author of Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead. Dr. Brene Brown has done research on topics no one wants to discuss, shame and vulnerability. Yet it is through these human experiences that we find the courage to “dare greatly” and become “wholehearted.” In this candid conversation she weaves her own experience with her research and thus inspires us all to live courageous lives.

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The Covenants of the Prophet Muhammad with the Christians of the World: A Conversation with John Andrew Morrow

Why do the powers that be try to convince us that there is a “clash of cultures” or a conflict between Islam and the West or between Islam and Christianity?

To answer that, Dr. John Andrew Morrow discusses his book, The Covenants of the Prophet Muhammad with the Christians of the World.  We learn that Christianity and Islam co-existed peacefully with full protections for Christians for 1400 years. These covenants

“uniformly state that Muslims are not to attack peaceful Christian communities, rob them, stop churches from being repaired, tear down churches to build mosques, prevent their Christian wives from going to church and taking spiritual direction from Christian priests and elders, etc. On the contrary, the Prophet commands Muslims to actively protect these communities ‘until the End of the World’.”

In this informative conversation we learn about the rise of European Colonialism and its handmaiden, Islamic Fundamentalism (now funded and supported by the U.S., the Saudis, and Israel) and the role of these modern powers in smearing Islam and framing Muslims as “terrorists” for geopolitical interests.

Dr. Morrow invites us to wake up and learn our history. Find his writings on his website, John Andrew Morrow, and learn more about these historic covenants at Covenants of the Prophet.

Dr. John Andrew Morrow was born in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, in 1971. Raised in a multilingual family, he lived in Montreal for ten years and in the Greater Toronto Area for another twenty. The product of a Catholic education, he completed his elementary school in French, his high school in English, and his university studies in English, French, and Spanish. He embraced Islam at the age of 16 after which he adopted the name Ilyas ‘Abd al-‘Alim Islam. After completing his Honors BA, MA, and PhD at the University of Toronto, where he acquired expertise in Hispanic, Native, and Islamic Studies, he pursued post-graduate studies in Arabic in Morocco and the United States. Besides his Western education, Dr. Morrow has completed the full cycle of traditional Islamic seminary studies both independently and at the hands of a series of Sunni, Shi’i, and Sufi scholars. Not only is he a senior scholar, academic, and professor, he is also a respected ‘alim holding the titles of ustadh, duktur, hakim, and shaykh. 

Dr. Morrow has spent over a decade and a half in the United States working at various universities including Park University, Northern State University, Eastern New Mexico University, the University of Virginia, and Ivy Tech where he was unanimously appointed to the rank of Full Professor. One of his most noteworthy and memorable experiences involved working as a professor of advanced Spanish, Islamic culture, and world literature for the Institute for Shipboard Education’s Semester at Sea Program. Aside from his academic duties, Dr. John Andrew Morrow is the Director of the Covenants Foundation, an organization dedicated to disseminating traditional, civilizational, Islam; promoting Islamic unity; protecting persecuted Christians; and improving relations between Muslims and members of other faiths. He regularly travels the world to promote peace and justice.

Dr. John Andrew Morrow is a Native North American and a proud member of the Metis Nation.

PS 123 Morrow Photo

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The World Only Spins Forward: Isaac Butler on Angels In America

Isaac Butler and Dan Kois take us backstage and behind the scenes of the iconic play, “Angels In America” in their book, The World Only Spins Forward: The Ascent of Angels In America. The book is an oral history, telling the story of the play and its influence from the voices of over 250 actors, actresses, and others who have given Angels In America its wings over the past 25 years. According to Isaac Butler, the political and social views of the play are still as relevant in the Trump era as they were in the Reagan era.

Angels In America is currently running on Broadway through July 15th.

Isaac Butler is a writer and theater director, most recently of “Real Enemies”, which premiered at the Brooklyn Academy of Music.

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Why Good People Become Silent (Or Worse) About 9/11 (ENCORE)

This was originally broadcast in August 2017.

Frances Shure is a Licensed Professional Counselor who is now retired from her private practice and from her position as adjunct instructor at Naropa University at Boulder, Colorado.

In her 20 years as a psychotherapist, she focused on “depth psychology,” which involves both the psychodynamic and transpersonal aspects of psychological healing.

Frances Shure co-founded Colorado 9/11 Truth in 2004 and is a member of the 9/11 Consensus Panel as well as the Medical Professionals for 9/11 Truth.

She was included with a number of other social scientists in the film 9/11: Explosive Evidence”Experts Speak Out that was produced by Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth. She is writing a series of articles for AE911Truth “Why Do Good People Become Silent”Or Worse”About 9/11?” These articles examine the psychological resistance to information that contradicts the official account of 9/11 or to any strongly held belief.

In this episode, we discuss the origin of the term “conspiracy theorist,’ why people of color view 9/11 differently than white people, a nationalist faith, the power of belief over fact, the barriers that privilege places in terms of accepting what we know to be true, and how the fear of isolation keeps people silent. Most importantly, we discuss psychological and spiritual growth and how that is only possible when we face our fears. Finally, we discuss ways to talk about this taboo topic with others.

PS 121 Frances Shure Photo

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Unprecedented Crime: Peter Carter and Climate Science Denial

Dr. Peter Carter is founder of the Climate Emergency Institute.  He has served as an expert reviewer for the Intergovernmental Panel of Climate Change’s fifth climate change assessment in 2014. He has also presented on the implications of global climate change on food security for the world’s most vulnerable regions and populations at science and policy conferences in Canada, the United States, Europe, Asia and South America.

He along with Elizabeth Woodworth, who has written extensively on climate science and activism, have co-written Unprecedented Crime: Climate Science Denial and Game Changers for Survival.

They make the case that fossil fuel companies and the banks that fund them have committed and are committing crimes against humanity. They can be stopped.

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An African-American and Latinx History of the United States: A Conversation with Paul Ortiz

Professor Ortiz will be at Powell’s Books on June 18th

for a book signing.

Professor Paul Ortiz is Associate Professor of History at the University of Florida and is Director of the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program.  Professor Ortiz has published and taught in the fields of African American history, Latino Studies, the African Diaspora, Social Movement Theory, U.S. History, U.S. South, labor, and documentary studies. He currently works with students in these and related fields.

He has written several books including Emancipation Betrayed: The Hidden History of Black Organizing and White Violence in Florida from Reconstruction to the Bloody Election of 1920 received the 1990 Harry T. and Harriette V. Moore Book Prize.

His latest book and our topic of discussion today is An African American and Latinx History of the United States. 

From Beacon Press:

“Incisive and timely, this bottom-up history, told from the interconnected vantage points of Latinx and African Americans, reveals the radically different ways that people of the diaspora have addressed issues still plaguing the United States today, and it offers a way forward in the continued struggle for universal civil rights.” 

BC 23 Paul Ortiz

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