The True Spirit Of Poet And Mystic Robert Lax with Michael N. McGregor
Product: MP3 Download
Program Number: 3566
Host: Phil Cousineau
Interview Date: 11/19/2015
Length: 1 Hour
Robert Lax is one of the great experimental poets of the 20th century, a daring and original avant-garde writer who was sought out as a sage and a mentor. He was a circus performer, a clown and a juggler, and well known for being a close friend of Thomas Merton. McGregor knew and loved this man and wrote a biography to make this remarkable man’s life and works better known to more people. He says of Lax, “Robert Lax was the most significant person I’d ever met…I felt his life was unusual and fascinating and it was a good opportunity to explore someone so unique and special in both a spiritual and artistic way.” As Lax searched for a vocation he decided that perhaps a person following a religion of love ought to be a prophet of love. Lax had the courage to go his own way and did not follow any shortcuts in his pursuit of truth and God. McGregor interprets Lax’s philosophy of life as one in which “love goes in all directions. It takes you deeper into yourself and it takes you into other people’s lives and into your interactions with them. He felt that life is meant to be a unity and all things in harmony. That didn’t mean just all people in harmony, that meant our interior in harmony with our exterior, our sleeping and dreaming in harmony with our waking consciousness, all things coming together in that way.” (hosted by Phil Cousineau)
Michael N. McGregor is a Professor of English and Creative Writing at Portland State University. He has lectured at universities, conferences, and community events on both Robert Lax and Thomas Merton, and is a member of Biographers International Organization and the International Thomas Merton Society.
Michael N. McGregor is the author of:
- Pure Act: The Uncommon Life of Robert Lax (Fordham University Press 2015)
To learn more about the work of Michael McGregor go to www.michaelnmcgregor.com.
Topics Explored in This Dialogue
- Why Michael McGregor pursued the life and work of Robert Lax
- What made Robert Lax such an unusual man
- How Robert Lax used to enjoy going to jazz clubs with Thomas Merton
- How as a boy Robert Lax was influenced by the circus. His father would take him to the train tracks and he would watch the circus being unloaded.
- How Robert Lax felt the Cristiani family demonstrate, by their circus performances, how to be closer to God
- How a break down precipitated Lax into a more authentic life
- What is the value of slowing down
- Who is Thomas Merton and how did he and Lax collaborate
- How Lax lived a life untethered to things