• Robert Martin Bishop

Radio Interview Experience

I gave an interview on a radio show some time ago about my book, I, Jetebais, and I came away from the experience very excited and hopeful.

When I learned that the interview was scheduled I was asked to come up with ten sample questions that the hosts could ask and for which I would have barn-burner answers that would send the entire listening audience to their bookstores clamoring for my book.

But it turned out that the hosts and interviewers, Larry Whistler and Robin MacBlane of WOCA in Ocala, Florida, didn’t need canned questions and in fact didn’t ask a single one them. Rather, they used their considerable skills to get beyond the storyline and on to the real meaning of the book without simply asking questions and waiting for answers. They turned what was supposed to be an interview into a conversation about the importance and power of faith. That was why I left the studio excited: they understood the book. I can’t think of a greater compliment to an author. But I was also excited because that very conversation is the reason I wrote the book: to get people talking – even arguing – about God and faith, two things so often missing in our lives.

Have we lost our faith? There are many people of faith to be sure, but as a society have we lost our faith? I’m not even talking about faith in God, necessarily, but how about faith that things can get better, faith that humanity has not irretrievably fallen into chaos, faith that there may come a leader to shatter the heretofore impregnable fortress protecting the status quo and the smug comfort of the smothering establishment?

So anyway, what is faith? I would offer that faith is belief in something for which there is no physical proof. It can be religious (faith in God) or quasi-spiritual (faith in “The Universe”), or simply faith in the goodness of Humankind. The anecdotal evidence of the power of faith is so voluminous as to make it an inarguable truth or, to all but the most hardened nihilists, at least something to raise an eyebrow.

And then there is perfect faith. If faith is belief, then perfect faith is knowledge. “Even without empirical evidence, I know it (faith, spiritual power, God) exists.” I maintain that we are all – believers and atheists alike – on our own roads to perfect faith. I don’t really know if we humans are capable of reaching that goal, but I know for a fact that we are not capable of reaching it without help. I pray to God for help. Others might use self-affirmations that humankind can come together.

In the end, though, for the sake of our very survival – let alone happiness – we have got to start talking about it.

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  • I, Jetebais