Godspeed Institute celebrates 100 spirituality radio shows
Lincolnville — Rising above the din of arguments for and against belief in God and religion is the voice of the Godspeed Institute, a radio program produced by the Godspeed Institute, a nonprofit, independent educational organization based in Lincolnville.
The program, now in its third year, airs every Sunday at 2 p.m. on the Progressive Radio Network in New York at prn.fm and can also be heard any time at the Institute’s website at godspeedinstitute.com, where all shows are posted.
“As religious tension and intolerance escalated in recent years, we discerned that the way to move forward together in peace was through getting to know each other — getting to know what our neighbors actually believe, historically and practically, and why,” said Caer Hallundbaek, founding director of the Institute and host of the program, in a news release.
An award-winning author and educator on the spiritual core of relationships, her books include "Dear Little One," "Saints in Love," and the new four-part series, "The Saints’ Guide to Relationships."
“We decided to create an enlightening and positive forum that explores all the world’s religions and spiritual practices, in an effort to promote religious tolerance and spiritual life skills,” she said.
Well along this spiritual trek around the world, the Institute recently surpassed its 100th show.
The radio program, presented as an “on-air classroom,” invites listeners on a journey into the lexicon of religions and spiritual belief systems around the world, through the lens of the world’s leading scholars, authors, clergy and practitioners. The conversations are lively, warm, insightful, often marked by humor, and always focused on the joy of learning about people’s beliefs.
Importantly, the Godspeed Institute is not a debating forum — a foundational value and continuing deliberate format choice. The program has rapidly become known as “an oasis” and “a treasure,” one place in the media where people do not fight over religion, who is right and who is wrong.
“We provide a unique and safe space for education, offering tools for people to learn about and better understand how others find purpose, meaning and peace through religious and spiritual philosophies and practices,” said Michael E. Hallundbaek, co-founder and president of the Institute. “No one is excluded from speaking.”
Indeed, the program archive presents a colorful tapestry of diverse topics — the many Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Sufi, Buddhist, Daoist, Native American, Hindu, Sikh, Shinto and Norse traditions, for a start — and has featured prominent guests such as Rabbi Rami Shapiro; Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee; Jacob Needleman; Peter Kinsgley; the Emory-Tibet Partnership of Emory University (which instructs the Dalai Lama’s monks on western science); Nicky Singh; the Bundle Keeper of the Wabanaki Nation; Phyllis Curott; William Bloom; James Cutsinger; Mirabai Starr; and many more.
The popularity of the show has indicated a real hunger in the world for peace of mind and between people. While the show is widely reposted on numerous blogs and websites, the Institute’s own website has logged more than 100,000 downloads so far, reflecting the spirited interest of others who also seek to learn. In addition, the program has been cited as an educational resource for the Forum on Religion and Ecology at Yale.
“Every week we get to the core of spirituality and the fact that the solutions to most of our problems as individuals and as a society are in fact spiritual in nature,” said Caer. “The solutions are almost always about the heart, no matter where we are in the world. This is where we connect. We have to. The heart is the way forward.”
To learn more about the radio program and the Godspeed Institute, visit godspeedinstitute.com.