Movies & Meaning
Cinematic Medicine with Kathleen Norris & Gareth Higgins
Two beloved storytellers invite you to an expanded horizon. Story, image, music, and possibility...
Kathleen Norris, New York Times bestselling author of Dakota, The Cloister Walk, and Acedia and Me loves cinema, literature, and poetry.
Gareth Higgins, Irish storyteller, violence reduction activist, and author of Cinematic States and How Not to be Afraid loves cinema too, music, and gathering people at the intersection of art, spirituality, and the common good.
Together we’re nurturing an online community of people who want to receive the gift of cinematic medicine, and to share it with others.
Introducing Soul Telegram...
Subscribe and twice a month you’ll receive recommendations of movies and television, music, reading and other story forms, alongside short reflective essays from Kathleen, Gareth, and special guests too.
You can enjoy Soul Telegram for yourself, or share the learning with groups; community leaders & clergy tell us it's a life-giving resource.
We’ll respond to readers' requests for stories that could speak to wherever you may be, to help mourn our sorrows, inspire us to action, and educate for a better life and a better world.
From time to time we’ll also share special opportunities such as online video conversations with Kathleen & Gareth, free movie screenings & discussions with filmmakers, discounts on books, and opportunities to gather together at festivals and retreats.
And if you want to explore even more deeply, we’ll offer opportunities to build community together through our Porch Circles - online communities proven to bring more joy, resilience, creativity and connection to our lives.
Friends tell us that when Kathleen & Gareth share their recommendations, it’s “of considerable value to my mental, emotional and spiritual health during this time. I’m hooked”
Subscribe now and you’ll get two special gifts: a reflection by Kathleen on why cinema matters to her, and Gareth's e-book, How Movies Can Help Us Live Better (Or Worse).
These days, stories about who we are and where we’re going need to be crafted and told - and listened to - with care, wisdom, and integrity. Join the Soul Telegram community, and be part of a better story for a better world.
To support the work of our writers, we ask $5 a month/$50 per year for Soul Telegram (you can cancel at anytime); if that’s beyond your budget, we won’t turn you away - just contact us for more information. And if you can contribute more it helps enable us to share the work with others who can’t afford it - please opt in at the Supporter Level and your contribution will be used to make our work more available to folks. Finally, if you'd like to gift a subscription to someone for $5 a month/$50 a year, just click here to contact us and we'll let you know how. Everyone’s welcome - and thank you.
Soul Telegram aims to point you to a movie, TV show, music or reading that offers connection instead of separation, creativity instead of sterility, and courage instead of fear.
A note from Gareth Higgins: My friend the Scottish architect-photographer Colin Fraser Wishart teaches me that the purpose of architecture is "to help us live better". I've come to believe this to be true of all art, all storytelling especially. The task of the critic is to be in dialogue with the artist and the audience, to help us make sense of what is going on in the world, and in our hearts; it's my privilege and joy to collaborate with my friend Kathleen Norris to share with you some of the stories that are helping us live better, and to participate in a conversation together about art, meaning, community, courage, honoring each other's needs, and the world around us.
A note from Kathleen Norris: Ever since I was ten years old I have had the urge to share my love of works of art. In the late 1950s when my dad bought the album of the Broadway musical West Side Story I was frustrated that few of my friends shared my enthusiasm for either the music or the story. That experience replicated itself throughout my teenaged years. It was socially acceptable to like the Beatles and the movie Goldfinger, but not Frank Sinatra's Only the Lonely album, or the films of Ingmar Bergman. His The Silence remains one of my favorite films but I recall being frustrated as a teenager that I had no one with whom to discuss it.
I hope that the readers of Soul Telegram will enjoy our reflections on art and engage with me and Gareth about the ways in which we've been moved by a film, a book, a piece of music or another form of storytelling. Art is a human essential, with the power to change minds and hearts. So let's begin.