Krista Tippett created and has hosted the National Public Radio program Speaking of Faith since its beginning in 2000. It is presently called On Being and is heard on more than 300 stations across the U.S. and globally via podcast and the Internet. She was a journalist and diplomat in divided Berlin during the 1980s before attending Yale Divinity School.
Tippett's spiritual memoir, Speaking of Faith: Why Religion Matters - and How to Talk About It (2007), expanded and illuminated our appreciation of religion and spirituality. Her second book Einstein's God: Conversations about Science and the Human Spirit (2010) pondered the connections between science and religion.
Becoming Wise harvests the words of rabbis, priests, philosophers, poets, novelists, historians, neurologists, psychologists, conflict negotiators, and others on the art of living. To name just a few: Maya Angelou, Barbara Kingsolver, Desmond Tutu, Maria Popova, and Parker J. Palmer. The chapters are organized around the themes of Words, Flesh, Love, Faith, and Hope.
Tippett and her conversation partners discuss the important spiritual practices of mystery, humility, forgiveness, compassion, gratitude, and hospitality. Love stands out as a primary virtue for the author: "If we are stretching to live wiser and not just smarter, we will aspire to learn what love means, how it arises and deepens, how it withers and revives, what it looks like as a private good but also as a common good."
Tippett continues: "Because it is the best of which we are capable, loving is also supremely exciting, not always but again and again. Love is something we master in moments. It crosses the chasms between us, and likewise brings them into relief."
It may seem counterintuitive to focus a book of conversations on the spiritual practice of mystery. But wise souls like Krista Tippett know that it's important to remain open to what cannot be known – those unconditional mysteries which infuse each and every sphere of life. That spirit is what makes this resource such a wonderful map of our times.