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Rules for Discussing the Meaning of It All

December 6, 2010

Tags: faith, storytelling, radio

"On my radio show, which covers issues of faith and moral imagination, I encourage my guests to follow a couple of ground rules: No abstractions about God, and speak in the first person, not on behalf of your group or tradition (or God)," writes radio host Krista Tippett, in a blog essay about her public radio program, Rules for Discussing the Meaning of It All. "This makes statements of belief much more hospitable, easier to hear....There is a profound difference between hearing someone say 'this is the truth' and hearing her say 'this is my truth.'"

"There are some truths that only mathematical equations can convey, and others that can be conveyed only by poetry. There is wisdom, too, that only story can capture. The best question to bring a lofty conversation back to earth is: 'What do you mean when you say that? The more thoughtful answers almost always contain a story. And the most vivid personal stories have the most universal reach, elevating our sense of others and of the humanity we share."

Krista Tippett on Being (formerly Speaking of Faith With Krista Tippett) is public radio's conversation about religion, meaning, ethics, and ideas. The show is available as a podcast. These are happy days for fans of intelligent talk shows, because we can listen online (or on our modern devices) to so many interesting and intelligent talk shows, mostly (in my opinion) on public radio. Here's a partial list of great radio programs where you can hear intelligent discussions -- and, by the way, where authors with an interesting approach to a topic can try getting booked. What's your favorite radio program, and what do you like about it?