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Words and rituals

Words and rituals


Psychology professor and Denmark native Marie Helweg-Larsen shares how Danish words can encourage better living by helping us settle, set boundaries, create community, and tune into shared moments. Sometimes we need more than words during really difficult periods of life. Katie Thornton shares the history of European funerary fashion — and how death rituals can help us move through grief.
Jesuits in space

Jesuits in space


Astrophysicist and Jesuit priest Adam Hincks shares the value he's found in studying both the Bible and the Big Bang.
The word ‘psyche’ comes from the Greek and Latin, meaning soul or spirit — so why is any talk of ‘the soul' so absent from modern-day psychology and psychiatry? Psychologist David Rosmarin shares how and why he's trying to bring spirituality back into his profession. Michelle Huang shares an unconventional method for advancing her own mental health and inner child work — with a little help from an AI chatbot and her childhood journal entries.
The scholar of religion Karen Armstrong says rational thinking has brought all kinds of wondrous things to the world. But when the scientific worldview began to take over in philosophy and spirituality, something vital was lost — the sense of wonder.
Just friends

Just friends


Maybe you’ve used the phrase yourself: "It’s purely platonic." Plato would not be impressed. The word he lent his name to was supposed to mean a love so powerful it transcends the physical. Marisa G. Franco is a psychologist, and a professor at the University of Maryland. She is the author of the book Platonic: How the Science of Attachment Can Help You Make – and Keep – Friends. Something is happening to men that’s leading them to have fewer friends than women. Producer Arman Aghbali looked into two recent books examining friendship among men: Hua Hsu is the author of Stay True. Michael Pedersen is the author of Boy Friends.
In the last few decades, cities across North America have lost many of their beloved third places — spaces outside the home or work where people can go to find community. But this isn't happening because people don't want to hang out anymore. Nathan Allebach says this problem has a lot to do with how we build our cities and who profits from our public spaces.
Footage from Iran shows girls and women removing their hijabs in protest. But when the videos end up on Tiktok some of the complexity around the veil is going to get lost. Tapestry spoke with Homa Hoodfar, on the meanings of the veil in Iran and Islam.  Peak into our voicemail as we hear from Iranians across Canada on their hopes and fears. Kiana Karimi speaks about what it means to discipline your hope so it’ll be there for you when you need it most.
Author and meditation teacher Jon Kabat-Zinn shares the value of staying in the here and now and making peace with paying attention.
A passion for history

A passion for history


A German town’s Passion Play is back on to fulfill a holy promise. Max Miller, host and creator of the YouTube channel Tasting History, brings the past into the present by recreating historic dishes.
Author Patty Krawec shares how going back and acknowledging harmful histories helps pave the way for a more hopeful future.
Facing our nightmares

Facing our nightmares


Author Brandon Grafius says there are spiritual lessons to be found in scary texts and something hopeful hidden in the horrifying. Kevin Ball reflects on if there's another way to talk about a person's passing.



Chris Stedman studies the way people are re-imagining religion online. He says that while current fashions like the Holy Trinity Bikini with the words Father and Son on the top and Holy Spirit on the bottom seem to be mocking religion, something more profound might be going on. Kyle Hide is the co-creator of the Instagram account I NEED GOD IN EVERY MOMENT OF MY LIFE. They say that despite the humorous - though some may say sacrilegious - images, there’s a real yearning for new ways to experience religion. The new surge of interest in Catholicism for young people online has also taken another unexpected turn with a group calling themselves “trad caths” short for “traditional Catholics.” They are new converts, or reverts to an older style of Catholicism, one that the church thought it had put behind it with Vatican II. Molly Olmstead explains
Religion scholar Joseph Laycock has been playing Dungeons and Dragons for a long time. He says that even though D&D was once a source of a moral panic, there is nothing satanic about it. Instead, Laycock sees the game as its own kind of spiritual practice. He says the imagination has always occupied a strange place in spirituality - as though it’s either a divine gift or some kind of curse. Cat Van Wert and Mike McPhaden both play D&D with their respective families. They share the moments when Dungeons and Dragons felt like more than a game. Tapestry producer Arman Aghbali brings us the story of one player's attempt to resurrect his character and the spiritual challenge that occurred along the way.
Where the heart lives

Where the heart lives


Tapestry features two documentaries this week: Strange Heart tells the story of a woman who, since receiving a heart transplant six years ago, reports that she hasn’t felt emotion and hasn’t experienced love in quite the same way. And Windhorse follows a couple in Nova Scotia as they give back the land they bought 30 years ago to Indigenous communities.
You may have heard about the bride and groom who spent their catering budget on a special appearance by Mickey and Minnie Mouse. We suspected there might be something profound at the heart of all this, in both the fervent desire to have a Disney wedding and in the ridicule that followed. We spoke to a professor of religion who studies how Disney itself functions as a kind of religion. Early in the pandemic, Rob Kenney thought a series of “how-to” videos might be of some use to people who lacked a father figure in their lives. Two-and-a-half years later, he finds himself the adopted internet dad to some four-million kids.
Julian Barnes’ latest novel, Elizabeth Finch, asks the question, what if civilization took a wrong turn in the 4th Century, by choosing Christianity over Hellenistic and Roman paganism?
Daniela Gesundheit splits her time between California and Toronto as part of the indie band Snowblink. She also is a cantor, the person who leads people in singing and prayer in a synagogue. There were conversations about what it means to be human happening in synagogue that she felt were too big to be confined to religion, and so she turned to music to help her further explore her spiritual questions.
Despite the challenges we face in 2022 — declining environment included — Kevin Kelly, an author, futurist and founding editor of Wired magazine, says he still believes in a brighter tomorrow. To that end, every year, he provides a list of advice on how you can improve your own life. Tapestry host Mary Hynes asks Kelly about his most recent list, and why even 20 years on from some flopped predictions, he stays optimistic.
Assistant professor of religion Alexander Hampton and opera singer Nicole Percifield teamed up at the University of Toronto to launch the Dawn Chorus project — incorporating birdsong recorded by students into a composition sung by Percifield, to celebrate and raise awareness of the wildlife existing within urban centres.
For churchgoers, COVID brought some big adjustments. Lockdowns and social distancing meant that many believers stayed at home — either sleeping in, or watching the service over Zoom. But a few pastors responded to the moment by seizing it. They built new churches in virtual reality. Plus: how the pandemic has shaped religious practices — for the worse, but also for the better.
Comments (2)

Rose Kirkland

would it be possible to add the poem about the moon in the show notes?

Oct 17th


Thoughtful and insightful episode . Many aha moments.

May 30th
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