Melissa and I chatted as if our lives depended on it and I loved every second of it. She is such an interesting person and soooooo easy to talk and listen to. She starred in a BBC documentary, called The Addicts’ Symphony. You can find interviews with Melissa about the documentary on the right of the YouTube screen when you go The Addicts’ Symphony; I recommend it.
Meet me in the field
This is a podcast about spiritual journeys.
I talk to friends and others whose spirituality I respect or find interesting. We discuss their concept of spirituality, where it is derived from, the path they took to arrive at it as well as what they do to maintain it.
We are all individuals, with our own journeys. Eight different people may draw eight different pictures of the same elephant, because we are looking at it from different angles. So, each of us has our own concept of spirituality. Even when we subscribe to the same dogma, our interpretations may still be vastly different.
This podcast reflects the concept of respect for our individualism and our search for meaning in a world that can, at times, create within us the need for something to hold on to and derive power from.
I got the name from the Rumi poem, “There is a field”. Although the theory is that Rumi was in love, I like the idea that we shall meet; in a peaceful place. Away from the over-complicated world, where we find solace in each other’s company.
I trust you will enjoy our company and derive some meaning from it.
Lynne has become, in my eyes at least, some form of internet sensation. She writes blogs and is involved on various websites and on YouTube. She seems to have made the world wide web her playground and looks as if she is thoroughly enjoying it. From drug addict and alcoholic to super mom and cyberspace conqueror. Here is Lynne’s story.
Yvette and I met on Father’s day in Muizenberg to record this episode. The plan was to find a quiet coffee shop to do the recording in. That was not meant to be. We could only find space in a bustling restaurant. The sound quality is not good, but I loved the chat.
Douglas is a legend in the recovery community in our area. He has been clean and sober for more than 30 years already and still going strong. I am very happy to be able to speak to him.
This sidebar series on meditation is a result of Jaco’s idea to do episodes to help people on how to start meditating. In this episode we discuss his expectations and reservations around meditation.
Rowan is an interesting young man, with a sharp wit and great sense of humour. It was while I was editing our conversation that I again realised how I love a decent conversation with an interesting person.
I call Janet The Survivor, because I am once again amazed to see what we can go through in life and keep on keeping on. Janet is a warrior and I have huge respect for what she is doing at the moment. I find her story hugely inspirational.
This was one of those interviews where I felt a nice rush of excitement, because I got to know Alaister sooo much better. He is really a unique and interesting person.
When I asked Anthony to speak to me, I started off by making the statement: “So, you are religious?” His reply was something in the line of: “If that is what you want to call it.” I was immediately intrigued. After all, this was a minister who just lead a funeral service using a bible to read from, and he implies that he is not religious.
After a conversation with my husband, I decided to do a few episodes on meditation. The idea is to get a meditation teacher in to come and talk to us about “meditation for beginners”. Giving us pointers on how to start meditating as well as discussing the dos and don’ts of meditation. I ask questions based on my experience and get clarity on what is okay and what not.
From the day I first saw Alan, in his capacity as a Minister at the Central Methodist Mission on Green Market Square in Cape Town, I liked him. He seemed like a really friendly person and instilled a sense of trust within me. I have never got to know him well at all, but I got a significant sense of what he stands for in life. I wanted to know more and am very happy that he agreed to talk to “Meet me in the field”.
Although Andre has a clear sense of spirituality, he seems to still be in the process of deciding what the god-concept is to him. I love that, because that is what this journey is about and that is exactly what “Meet me in the field” is about.
I asked Reuben in December already to come and chat to us on “Meet me in the field”, but he left for London shortly thereafter to attend to the birth of his baby-girl. I thoroughly enjoyed listening to him talking about how his daughter is changing his life and enhancing his sense of spirit.
Denis, unlike the rest of our circle of friends, was always very vocal and expressive when it came to his sense of spirituality. Today I appreciate that about him and am happy that he agreed to share his thoughts and life with us.
I met Janet through my friend, Fiona, who is The Photographer, in episode 5 of “Meet me in the field”. Fiona is also the founder of [Sober of Sexy] (http://soberandsexy.co.za/). I am a twelve step junkie and find it difficult to believe that people get clean and sober and stay that way without working these steps. Janet is a living example of someone who has found an alternative that is working for her and many of her workshop attendees. I specifically took the picture accompanying this episode in Janet’s lounge, as I felt it encapsulates her sense of spirituality perfectly.
When I met Thandi, a few years ago, I was in my late 40s and she was 18. I immediately liked her a lot and felt an immense amount of compassion towards her. We never really connected though. But, thanks to doing service in recovery, we have been seeing each other more. She is such fun to have around and a true inspiration for young people in recovery.
Today, I am happy to introduce to you, my friend, Emile. You will note, at the end of the introduction to the podcast, I mention that “Meet me in the field” is now supported by African Travel Kid. Well, Emile is the owner of this exciting travel company and I am happy to get him here to tell us about his thrilling journey. You can learn more about African Travel Kid here: https://africantravelkid.com/
Pierre and I became friends about 29 years ago, when we were called up to the National Defence Force to defend our country against the terrorist invasion. I may try to be more open-minded, but it will probably take a bit longer to rid myself of my sarcasm. Anyway, one of the most amazing gifts from conscription for me, is that I made life-long friends. Pierre is one of those friends.
I am often told that I talk to many people about their spiritual journeys, but that I have never shared my own path. Although I share snippets of my own story quite often, it was suggested that I do a recording of my own spiritual journey. This is it.
In my husband’s capacity as both fan and critic, but also a devout scientist, I enjoy talking to him to get his feedback on “Meet me in the field” and to hear if it is making some form of spiritual impact on him. This episode is another of our chats in this regard.
I met Lee on a fellowship weekend in July 2016. Despite our many differences, our similarities easily connected and I have been feeling some form of soul connection with him since then. Due to us living quite far apart, we do not see each other often, but we do keep in contact and I love to be able to call him a friend. This is his story.
I am once again fascinated by how little I know about many of my friends’ spiritual journeys. Gail stunned me with some of the details of her story. I am super excited to share her path with you.
Melissa’s mother died last year and she is really stuck in her grieving process. Due to her being in emotional discomfort, I was about to cancel our appointment on the morning of the recording, but I remembered the positive feedback I get from people after our chat and decided that it might actually do her good to talk to me. So I pushed through.
Today I am talking to Chris. He must be one of the most gentle souls I have ever met. I always enjoy his company when we meet. His energy is calming. I find that quite energising. He is doing amazing work on himself and I am very happy and grateful to be able to hear about his spiritual path.
From the day I met AndreCarl I liked him. I am inherently shy and do not talk to anyone very easily, but I admired him from a distance. Yes, I respect him for a being a published writer, highly so, but what really drew my attention was his calm demeanor. I kept on wondering what he did or does to have accomplished such a level of serenity. Today, I am happy to have spoken to him and to find out more about his journey in life.
As a Holistic Counsellor, I was completely fascinated by my conversation with Sam. He has such a cognitive connection with his spirituality and articulates it so intellectually. I kept on thinking that he is not going to relate emotively. But, he surprised me time and again with his deep and real feelings related to what he believes spirituality to be.
I call this episode of “Meet me in the field”, “The Machine”. If you listen to Mark’s story you will see why. This man has endured incredible challenges in his journey of recovery and in spirituality. Yet, he keeps on keeping on and is happy to share his story with us today. I am very grateful for his commitment and wish him good heath.
For my own peace of mind and sense of security, I box people. Once I know which box they fit into, I find my engagement with them to come easier and more naturally. Mark is my exception to this rule. I find that he does not fit into any of my existing boxes, so he has his own unique box in my psyche, labeled Mark. I thoroughly enjoyed this conversation. There is a depth and a width to Mark’s spirituality which I found truly fascinating and I loved hearing about his journey. I trust that you will enjoy it too.
My conversation with Nicole brought back many memories, both awful and good. But, what I got out of it the most, was how much we laughed during the recording. It reminded me of the fact that we live spiritually in order to experience freedom and to love ourselves and life. A lesson I think we can take with us on our daily journey.
I repeat this so often that it becomes boring, but I have again learned a vast amount about a friend whom I have known for many years. Mandy has been a dear friend for a long time and it is great to see her getting back to spiritual fitness and settled into her new little piece of heaven. I especially love her two most adorable buddha statues that welcomes one on her porch. It truly feels like one is entering a soul sanctuary when you walk into her home.
I am still fascinated by how much I learn about my guests when I chat to them. Invariably they are people whom I know or think I know. But, I am coming to realise how compartementalised we live our lives. Knowing something about someone’s sense of spirituality, does not mean that I know how they got there. This is again what I have learned from my chat with Marvin. I thoroughly enjoyed getting to learn more about his journey and in the process getting go know a lot more of the person behind the story.
I see my renewed friendship with Dionne as proof that the twelve step programme works. I follow the steps and do what is suggested. I made an amend to Dionne, as suggested in the ninth step and as a result, I am getting a friend back. During our time apart, both us went through very difficult times, resulting in us having some form of spiritual awakenings. It is her awakening and the path we are on, that Dionne and I are discussing in this episode.
Daniel refers to himself as a spiritual atheist, which is a term that I have not heard before. During our conversation it becomes quite clear that this description suits him perfectly. He knows that walking some form of a spiritual path is imperative to living contently and he does what he needs to do to walk this road less travelled for him.
Kirsty believes in nature as her higher source and has, since childhood, spent some quality time out in the open. As a Chef, she was fortunate enough to work in some wonderful places in nature, which helped to strengthen this relationship.
James has quite a unique sense of spirituality. His journey to where he is now took him on many interesting paths, but the ultimate goal of helping people has always played a big part in his life. During the podcast we refer to an article I wrote about the media and the expectation they create around beauty. That article can be accessed here: A step in the right direction.
My husband, Jaco, introduced me to podcasts. Before I met him, I have never even heard of it. It was also his idea that I start “Meet me in the field”. I am very grateful for that. He listens to podcasts constantly and I consequently appreciate his guidance immensely.
I love to hear Anton talk about the difference fatherhood has made to his life and how that features as a significant part of his spirituality. His son is giving him the opportunity to connect with his inner child and providing the space for Anton to play. This is truly beautiful and a gift of recovery.
Craig’s spiritual journey has taken him to many interesting places. He uses these experiences to strenghten his sense of spirituality. He does a lot of written work to process stuff and then uses yoga to access the knowledge that comes to him.
Leandra has truly connected with a deep sense of spirituality through doing yoga. This has taught her a set of principles which she uses effectively in her day-to-day existence.
I call Junior’s podcast The Trusted Servant, because he is probably one of the people I know who is the most committed to helping others. As you wil hear in this podcast, he sometimes needs to stand back from service to ensure that he has balance in his life and keeps himself safe in the process.
In a beautifully authentic way, Wendy shares her struggle as an Archaeologist, to find a most needed spiritual path in dealing with her eating disorder.
John’s journey takes him from science to religion and back to science, while holding on to his strong religious beliefs through difficult times. I love his commitment and dedication. I hope you will enjoy it too.
Fiona has, through working strong recovery programs in various fellowships, grown to be become a good friend and confidant for many. She has also developed herself into a known and pubished photographer in Cape Town, something which she has taken futher to develop a brand called Sober and Sexy. I think we are going to get to know her a lot better as she walks this path. I hope so.
I met Jules just over 2 years ago, while she was on holiday in Cape Town. She has in the meantime moved here. We connect on various levels, not only due to our shared journey in recovery, but also due to a shared history of high level hurdling in our youth. I have a huge amount of respect for her tenacity and single-minded determination.
Although I have known Janine for some time already, our paths only recently brought us much closer. I have learnt that she is an amazingly interesting woman. A true healer. She did some Emotional Freedom Tapping and Matrix reimprinting treatment on me, with wonderful results. We refer to this session during our conversation.
Hansie has changed significantly in the 3 years that we have known each other. We discuss what caused this dramatic transformation and reflect on how things were before the change. We also talk about the positive influences in his life and his connnection with the sea and silence.
This first episode features a conversation between Freddie and Jaco about the theme of the podcast.