Saturday, March 27, 2021

The Mystical Positivist - Radio Show #377 - 27MAR21


This week on the show we feature a pre-recorded conversation with Jundo Cohen about his latest book, The Zen Master's Dance: A Guide to Understanding Dogen and Who You Are in the Universe. In The Zen Master’s Dance, Jundo Cohen takes us deep into the mind of Master Dogen—and shows us how to join in the great and intimate dance of the universe. Through fresh translations and sparkling teaching, Cohen opens up for us a new way to read one of Buddhism’s most remarkable spiritual geniuses. In addition to his book, we discuss at length the benefits and opportunities in maintaining a largely online sangha tradition.

Jundo Cohen is a Zen teacher and founder of the Treeleaf Zendo, a Soto Zen community using visual media to link Zen practitioners around the world. Treeleaf serves those who cannot easily commute to a Zen center due to health concerns; age or disability; living in remote areas; or work, childcare, or family needs; and provides zazen sittings, retreats, discussion, interaction with a teacher, and all other activities of a Zen Buddhist sangha, all fully online without thought of location or distance. Jundo was born and raised in the United States but has lived in Japan for more than half his life. He was ordained and subsequently received Dharma transmission from Master Gudo Wafu Nishijima and is a member of the Soto Zen Buddhist Association.


More information about Jundo Cohen's work can be found at:

Treeleaf Zendo website: www.treeleaf.org,

Jundo Cohen on the Soto Zen Buddhist Association website: www.szba.org.

Saturday, February 27, 2021

The Mystical Positivist - Radio Show #376 - 27FEB21


This week on the show we feature a pre-recorded conversation with Theresa Dintino, author of the newly published book, Membranes of Hope: A Guide to Attending to the Spiritual Boundaries that Keep Life Systems Healthy from the Personal to the Cosmic. The membrane is a permeable boundary with intelligence and discernment that allows in or keeps out that which it senses is appropriate for the lifesystems within it. Spiritual, etheric, or bioenergetic membranes encase and enclose lifesystems, from the cells in our bodies to the cosmos around us. They contain, protect, and inform our personal souls, families, villages, the Earth, and extend out into the universe. The role of the spirit worker has always been to tend to, support, and keep these membranes strong and supple so that what is held within them not only survives but thrives. In this book, Theresa defines this revolutionary concept and offers the reader tools to learn how to engage in this work at any level they wish to participate.

Theresa Dintino is the author of eight books and serves as a guide and spiritual mentor to many. While attempting to reclaim and restore her ancestral medicine lineage, the Italian Strega tradition, Dintino was surprised to be “claimed” by the West African Dagara tradition of stick divination. Honored by this invitation, Dintino pursued it, and in 2011 was initiated into this potent form of divination. Besides her family and daughter, this turned out to be the greatest gift of her life. Stick divination helped Dintino find her way back to her own lineage and enables her to help others find and restore theirs. This beautiful practice of Dagara stick divination continues to offer countless gifts. In multiple divination sessions, Dintino was taught about the spiritual membranes that protect, nurture, and inform lifesystems.


More information about Theresa Dintino's work can be found at:

Strega Tree Divination website: stregatree.com,

The Ritual Goddess website: ritualgoddess.com,

Nasty Women Writers website: www.nastywomenwriters.com.

Saturday, January 30, 2021

The Mystical Positivist - Radio Show #375 - 30JAN21


This week on the show on the show we feature a pre-recorded conversation with two of our favorite guests, Ken McLeod and Jim Wilson. Today we tackle a number of questions that have been bubbling up from the early days of Christianity through to the Reformation and into the modern epic. Topics include Faith versus Works as a path to salvation, what happens when Mythos is projected onto Logos, the distinction between Belief and Faith, how practice depends upon context, the practice of asceticism, and the relationship between allegorical thinking and the opening of the heart.

After learning Tibetan, Ken McLeod translated for his principal teacher, Kalu Rinpoche, and helped to develop Rinpoche’s centers in North America and Europe. In 1985, Kalu Rinpoche authorized Ken to teach and placed him in charge of his Los Angeles center. Faced with the challenges of teaching in a major metropolis, he began exploring different methods and formats for working with students. He moved away from both the teacher-center model and the minister-church model and developed a consultant-client model. Ken is the founder and director of UnfetteredMind.org. He is the author of Wake Up to Your Life: Discovering the Buddhist Path of Attention, The Great Path of Awakening, An Arrow to the Heart, Reflections on Silver River, and his most recent book, A Trackless Path.

Jim Wilson was a monk and abbot under the direction of his teacher Seung Sahn, a Korean Chogye sect Zen master. He served as a Buddhist Prison Chaplain, studied western philosophy, co-founded Many Rivers Books & Tea in Sebastopol, conducts a website devoted to syllabic form Haiku, and has penned and published many books of poetry. In recent years his spiritual practice has centered on the Quaker Christian tradition. In addition to his many poetry volumes, he has published several books on spiritual matters, including On Trusting the Heart, a commentary on a famous poem by the third Zen patriarch, and An Annotated Edition of a Guide to True Peace.


More information about Ken McLeod and Jim Wilson's work can be found at:
Unfettered Mind website: www.unfetteredmind.org,
On Trusting the Heart - A Commentary on the Xin Xin Ming: On Trusting the Heart,
An Annotated Edition of a Guide to True Peace (2nd Edition): Guide to True Peace,
Shaping Words Poetry Website: shapingwords.blogspot.com.

Saturday, January 9, 2021

The Mystical Positivist - Radio Show #374 - 09JAN21


This week on the show we feature a pre-recorded conversation with Father Joseph Azize, author of the 2020 book, Gurdjieff: Mysticism, Contemplation, & Exercises. Father Azize is a priest in the Maronite Catholic Church, working chiefly in the Chancery. He is also an honorary associate at the University of Sydney. For twenty-three years, he was a practicing attorney for the Commonwealth of Australia, serving at one time as acting Senior Assistant Director of Publications. He has published academically in three areas: ancient history, litigation law, and now in religious studies, and has also written some music for use in the Maronite liturgy.

In Gurdjieff: Mysticism, Contemplation, & Exercises, Azize explores the mystical dimension of the Gurdjieff work and details the evolution of Transformed-Contemplations in the later stages of Gurdjieff’s teaching. Our conversation examines the meaning of the mystical in Fourth Way practice, the use of Transformed-Contemplations to metabolize the finer energies necessary to stabilize presence, the relationship of Transformed-Contemplations to the Prayer of the Heart, and more.


More information about Father Joseph Azize's work can be found at:

Joseph Azize's website: www.josephazize.com.