Dec 19, 2015

Super Soul Sunday

Thomas Moore on Super Soul Sunday

In June of 2015 I Oprah Winfrey’s producers invited me to have a conversation with Oprah on camera about my book A Religion of One’s Own. They said that the themes of this book fit well with their plans for Oprah’s new program Super Soul Sunday. I had been on Oprah’s old live studio program in Chicago twenty years ago, but I was new to the media then and wasn’t prepared to do a good job presenting my ideas. The program had a large audience and the frazzle of live TV.  I was also one of several authors and had to squeeze my ideas into about a three-minute interview. This time the setting was relaxed. Just Oprah and I with her crew on a veranda with two and a half hours to explore a wide range of ideas.

I arrived at the set a bit early, and I knew things were going to go well when I heard Oprah sing out my name as she walked down a hill to join me. We got comfortable and began talking. I had told myself to be aware of the setting and take care with my choice of words. I didn’t want to say anything dumb. But then within a minute I had forgotten entirely about the cameras and producers and technicians surrounding us. It was just Oprah and I in excited and deep conversation.

We explored many interesting topics, and I only wish now that somehow people could watch the entire interview, instead of the small portion that had to be edited for the program. I found Oprah to be warm, very intelligent, and passionate in her concern for the world and her audience. Time after time she clarified what I was saying, putting my words into language a large audience might follow better. She had read my book closely, and didn’t want to begin the interview until she had found one particular page that she wanted to discuss. I wondered what the passage might be, and it turned out to be one of the most difficult in the book:  “Your spiritual self was born in a dream, and when you dream you are returning home. Your natural self is at home in the land where everything is both a physical fact and a poetic metaphor. When you dream, you are returning to the home, the very womb of your spirt and a world that speaks the language of your soul.”

While it’s true that Oprah is dedicated to some writers whose work doesn’t speak to me, I enjoyed our conversation so much, truly I didn’t want it to end. And I enjoyed her company so much that I didn’t want to leave. A few weeks later Oprah invited me and my wife to a dinner for spiritual leaders, and once again I found her gracious, real and full of heart and intelligence.  I can’t find words to express my admiration for her. If only world leaders had her gifts of mind and soul.

written by Thomas Moore
  • Tyler May 4, 2016 Reply

    I would also like to watch the whole video

  • Sande Ramage Sep 3, 2016 Reply

    Yes. Yes. Yes! This unknowability, this space, the no-thingness of God is exactly what enables me to continue on the soulful journey.

  • Maria Carbonetti Dec 7, 2016 Reply

    I admire and enjoy the deepness of your thoughts and writing very much.
    But your comments on dreams frighten me deeply. My dreams are full of tragedy, immobility and hopelessness, most of the time I suffer in my dreams, never about myself but about my love ones and strangers in the verge of tragedy and calamity or pain, if this is my true larger reality,,. that is a sad realization, my whole life since I was a child I have more nightmares than dreams meant for wonder. I have a family I love more than anything, and a work I love too, my dreams … are very dark. I am trying to understand this part of your thinking, and I hope I will one day.
    Thank you from my heart for your inspiration and for your writing, I hope one day I will listen to you in person. Please come to Vancouver BC one day, Blessings! Maria

  • Carol May 11, 2017 Reply

    I look forward to watching the interview. Oprah is very careful about who she interviews.

  • peggy May 19, 2017 Reply

    I love this book … and currently have lent it to a young friend whose outlook on religion is changing wa she, reads each chapter. She is being finally freed.

  • Jacquelin Saunders May 28, 2017 Reply

    I have seen this episode a number of times and am frustrated I can’t find it on Oprah’s Super Soul website for replay as I would like to share it with my son. You, Thomas Moore simply reinforce the soulful and spiritual things I know to be true in my own experiences. Everything you say including the subject of dreams speaks to me. I am glad to know you are out there among us, sharing these ideas. Thank you!

  • jan golick May 29, 2017 Reply

    thank you for this perspective

  • Janice Jun 11, 2017 Reply

    I truly appreciate this recount of your experience with Oprah. I too have found I do not connect with several people in Oprahs circle, however your description of how you experienced Oprahs interview warmed my heart. I have most of your books and attended a live event that you spoke at and have cherished your words through many stages of my life. Thank you!

  • Suzanne Jul 6, 2017 Reply

    Your Super Soul Sunday interview arrived in my life at a perfectly imperfect moment and opened a door that I could bravely step through and into a world of my own feelings – the ones that many people want me not to feel, and certainly not for longer than the time limit that they set. Thank you for your wisdom and guidance. Your books are a pleasure to read – full of dreamscapes, art, poetry and philosophy and very comforting during troubled times.

  • Dan Jul 22, 2017 Reply

    I love your quote: “When you dream, you are returning to the home, the very womb of your spirt [sic] and a world that speaks the language of your soul.”

  • Mary Aug 5, 2017 Reply

    Loved his book Care of the soul. Looking forward to reading more and finding out about caring therapists in his field

  • Linda Mar 11, 2018 Reply

    Truth spoken so beautifully and with clarity. The Aboriginal people live this belief. Thank you for your insight and inspiration.

  • Maria Lyzen Mar 11, 2018 Reply

    Today is Sunday March 11;, 2018 and just watched the show, It was so wonderful and you came across just how you felt inside. It was a marvelous interview. My nightstand has many of your books but I am going to purchase this new one. We have much in common. I am a Canadian that attended UM, University of Windsor and live near Detroit. Also am a fan if Hillman, Sardello, etc. Thank you for your words, thoughts and books for they resonate with me and help me living my best.

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