Hosted by John Lobell, we talk with visionaries – people in the arts, technology, science, culture, and spirituality

"Technological Optimism." We have just finished the most prosperous decade in human history in which one billion people exited abject poverty. Today the poorest people carry $3 million Cray super computers and live to their 80s. So why the pessimism? Tune in as we explore.
 
 
 

The economist, Clayton Christensen who introduced the idea of "disruptive innovation,” just died, so we look at some of his ideas, and then wander off into thinking about who are some of the most important "idea" people of our time, and why they are seldom (or never) mentioned in the New York Times. Look up Matt Ridley, Steven Kotler, Craig Venter, Sebastian Thrun, Jimmy Wales, and Peter Diamandis, and see what you get.

Today our guest is composer and music producer MJDorian. On his blog he looks in depth at creative figures such as Salvador Dalí, Frida Kahlo, Leonardo da Vinci, Nikola Tesla, and Clinton King. Today we discuss the Red Book by Carl Jung. Once a colleague of Freud, Jung broke away to explore the unconscious in much greater depth. Once dismissed as a mystic, Jung is now central to any meaningful discussion of the arts and of culture. Find more at http://www.mjdorian.com. His blog is Creative Codex.
 
 

Our guest today is Rachel Fulton Brown. Rachel is an associate professor of Medieval History at the University of Chicago. She writes: I am the professor your other professors warned you about. I love Christianity, America, and the Western tradition of theology, art, philosophy, music, letters, and education. I believe in the reality of truth, beauty, goodness, and love. I teach history as an exercise in empathy, rethinking the thoughts of the past so as to shed light on our common humanity. I judge people by what they say and do, not by what others say about them. I worship Jesus Christ as Lord. Find Rachel's blog at: https://fencingbearatprayer.blogspot.com

More on what we might all be reading (or in my case, audio books I'm listening to).
With thoughts on the "canon wars" promoted by the death of Harold Bloom. We discuss his idea of "swerving" (deliberately misreading an influence) and his terrific book, "The American Religion" in which he looks not at what denominations people belong to, but what they actually believe. Plus we discuss the fabulous Eve Babitz, who I somehow missed in the 1970s, but all of her books now have great audio versions.

 
 
What is our culture? For me in the late 1950s it was books - Gide, Freud, culminating in Mailer's Advertisements for Myself. Then in the early 60s it was foreign films - Bergman's Wild Strawberries, Fellini's La Dolce Vita, Antonioni's L'Avventura, and most of all Godard's Breathless. Then in the later 60s, rock music - The Beatles and the Stones, culminating in Dylan. For my students today, they say it is social media - wasup with that? Then we discuss Daniel Markovits's The Meritocracy Trap - more on that to come.
 
 
 
 
Today we look at some of the books on my phone. "The Code: Silicon Valley and the Remaking of America" by Margaret O'Mara reviews a history of computers familiar to those who have followed the industry for the past 50 years. "Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World" by David Epstein presents powerful insights into creativity and performance, debunking the 10,000 hours thing. We will get to "The Meritocracy Trap" by Daniel Markovits in an upcoming show.
 
 
 
 
Today we discuss the creativity of Salvador Dalí with MJDorian (Milosz Jeziorski), an award winning composer who writes music for film and television and blogs about creativity. In 2016, he took on the identity of MJDorian: a faceless music producer who wears a poltergeist mask which obscures any indication of age, race, or gender. Look for his blog, Creative Codex on your blog app, where you will find, besides Salvador Dalí, discussions of Frida Kahlo, Leonardo da Vinci, Nikola Tesla, Clinton King, and others. Find more at www.mjdorian.com
 

Jennifer Dumpert, a dream hacker, explains how to explore liminal dreaming for creativity and spiritual inspiration. At the edges of consciousness, between waking and sleeping, there’s a swirling, free associative state of mind that is the domain of liminal dreams. Working with liminal dreams can improve sleep, mitigate anxiety and depression, help to heal trauma, and aid creativity and problem-solving. Readers of Liminal Dreaming will learn step-by-step how to create a dream practice outside of REM-sleep states that they can incorporate into their lives in personally meaningful ways.

We discuss her book, "Liminal Dreaming: Exploring Consciousness at the Edges of Sleep" and also what is consciousness. About the book at:  http://www.liminaldreaming.com

Find more at:  http://oneironauticum.com

Jennifer Dumpert is a San Francisco-based writer, lecturer, and consciousness hacker. She is an author, speaker, and avid dreamer. In 2009, Jennifer founded the Oneironauticum, an international organization that explores the phenomenological experience of dreams as a means of experimenting with mind. On the same night, remote participants from around the world use the same oneirogen--any herb, root, technology, practice, scent, sound, or whatever promotes vivid dreams--creating a worldwide slumber party, a night when people around the globe unite as a community of dreamers.

Hypermodernity and the End of the World” by John David Ebert and Brian Francis Culkin, preface By Michael Aaron Kamins. This new book follows the sweep of cultural history from Modernism to Post Modernism to Hypermodernity. It looks are how the Internet is upending our world are we know it, fragmenting all. Kamins writes in his preface: “The Book of Revelation got nothing on this new Apocalypse by Culkin and Ebert. They are, no doubt, the real hype of cultural criticism today (so was John of Patmos). One is the Father of a new Americana of visionary-criticism and, from a modest casita in Santa Fe, must be sitting on the most valuable literary estate of a generation. I mention this last point because with nearly thirty books and 500+ YouTube videos—from film reviews and philosophy, to poetry and commentary on the “decay rate” of virtually all cultural phenomena [3]—John David Ebert is still practically unknown beyond a small but international “cult following,” and a tight circle of writers, artists, and meme madmen: a.k.a., the Hypermoderns