When you were in a tight spot, how did help get through to you, assuming help did get through to you?

weltraumDid God speak from out of the whirlwind — of crisis, panic, and despair? Or did aid come from inside yourself — a ‘how-to’ or random thought that proved serviceable in the midst?

If you’re a regular listener to PZ’s Podcast, you may well answer, the former. That’s certainly what happened to PZ!

Nevertheless, your source of inspiration, and help, and salvation in the imminent immanent sense of the word: what was it?

You won’t be surprised that I’ve been thinking, in this connection, about UFOs. I saw a Big One in the early ’80s — as did John Zahl, who was with me at the time. And ever since Battle in Outer Space (1959) came out, I’ve been a kind of believer. But never mind.

What’s interesting, though, is that Booth Tarkington was a kind of believer, also. As was Nevil Shute. As was Rudyard Kipling. (You have to read Kipling’s short story “A Matter of Fact”, just to name one.) Each of these writers left room, over on the margins, for the Unknown. Each was thusly religious.

In your experience of crisis, from what source has “the power of God unto salvation” (Romans 1:16) come? “Tolle lege”? “My heart was strangely warmed”? “Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?” “I was wrong” (Robert Wyatt). Tell me about it.

This podcast is dedicated to John Arthur Zahl.