Many of you are familiar with Thomas Wirthlin McConkie. For those of you who are not, here’s a very cursory thumbnail sketch of his story:
Coming from a very prominent Latter-day Saint family (with apostles on both sides of the family), Thomas left the Latter-day Saint faith as a teenager, eventually moved to China and for two decades deeply immersed himself in Buddhism. Eventually, he found his way back to the his native Latter-day Saint faith, and today finds himself integrating ideas and practices from both traditions in remarkable and important ways.
If you’d like to hear the story of Thomas’s journey in more detail, you can listen to a fascinating multi-episode deep dive on the Faith Matters podcast starting in episode 15.
Thomas has just created a truly beautiful online course called Gospel Meets Dharma. The course description says it this way: “Gospel Meets Dharma represents a sacred encounter between Christianity and Buddhism, two traditions that have shaped and formed countless millions of minds and souls over the millennia. In this ‘interspiritual dialogue’, the unique fruits of each path come into clear relief, while also giving rise to a Beauty that transcends and includes them both.”
We invited Thomas back to our studio this week to talk about what inspired him to create this course and to explore some of its key themes. As always, we loved our conversation with Thomas and imagine you will as well.