Otherhood, the Podcast: Episode 1, Christine Valters Paintner and “The Artist’s Rule”

Posted by on Jul 8, 2011 in Otherhood | 24 Comments
Otherhood, the Podcast: Episode 1, Christine Valters Paintner and “The Artist’s Rule”

Meet Otherhood, the Podcast.

In this, the first episode, I interview Christine Valters Paintner about her new book (the Artist’s Rule: Nurturing Your Creative Soul With Monastic Wisdom), the oblate life, and what it means to be both an artist and a monk.

BTW, we’re giving away a free copy of the Artist’s Rule to whomever leaves the best comment on this post. Just sayin’.



  1. stacy wills
    July 9, 2011

    as one who participated in christine’s first “way of the monk, path of the artist” online course, i have eagerly awaited the release of this book! the course was truly transformative in my own life, and i look forward to continuing and deepening that journey with “the artist’s rule.” thanks so much for the great interview, it’s nice to know there are other kindred spirits out there!

  2. Meghan S. Humlie
    July 9, 2011

    I purchased the book from Amazon and received it a few days ago. I am already in Week One. Much Gratitude and Blessings!

  3. Chris Stewart
    July 9, 2011

    I’ve followed Christine’s website for while and resonate with her perspective and writing. I teach my students that writing is a practice you commit to with your soul, not your ego. It should be an exploration of the self and the world, one that is ever changing and transformational. I think writers (artists) work better inside a structure that takes their creativity as soul amd self expression into consideration, so I look forward to reading the book. Sounds wonderful!

  4. Laura
    July 9, 2011

    Christine says “I do a lot of work in photography,” but what she will not tell you is that her photos are breathtaking and draw you in immediately. The “Eyes of the Heart: Photography as a Contemplative Practice” course will change the way you see. But really, any of her classes will change your life… 🙂

  5. Cole Matson
    July 9, 2011

    Nathan and Christine,

    Thank you for this wonderful podcast. It was good for me to hear the effect that being a Benedictine oblate has had on Christine’s artistic practice, as I am considering oblation myself.

    In support of contemplation bearing fruit in artistic creation (as in a motto of the Dominican Order, “to contemplate and to share the fruits of contemplation”), I thought I’d share with you a couple of the poems that arose out of a recent Ignatian silent retreat, after I had been reading John of the Cross and Lady Julian of Norwich.

    “For John of the Cross”

    Lord, let me love You
    with the flame of ten thousand fires.

    Let me love You
    with a flame that dries and crackles,

    burns and blackens the crust of my soul,
    hides deep down in the heart of things,

    to warm and beat,
    flickering forth with tongues of fire

    to burst through the shell of my cindered soul,
    and leap to dance as love again.

    Lord, make me all flame.

    “For Lady Julian”

    Lord, teach me to love my weaknesses
    as Lady Julian loved hers,
    seeing that the soiled, torn stain of our sins
    blackening the white cloth of our humanity
    was such a little nothing
    because that cloth was worn by Christ,
    who picked us up out of the Pit
    and sat us next to Him at table,
    with His Father and His Spirit,
    all of us dazzling white,
    with the wounds we ripped into our flesh
    shining scars praising God’s glory,
    His merciful meaning: ‘Love’.

    Blessings on your work.


    • Nathan Rosquist
      July 10, 2011

      Excellent stuff, Cole. Thanks for sharing these with us!

  6. jann durkin
    July 9, 2011

    I enjoyed listening to this very much. My comment is this:
    I find that when I seek to draw something, the more I look at the subject, the more I see, and I may have to draw and re-draw it many times, because the true inner self of the subject reveals itself only through my contemplation of it, touching it, smelling it, looking at it; until, eventually, I draw what the drawing is supposed to be. It is my revealing of not only the core of what I’m drawing, but also revealing the why of myself that chose the subject to begin with. This is an absolutely solitary journey and only others who engage in this activity of creating will understand how it feeds my soul.

    • Nathan Rosquist
      July 10, 2011

      I think I’ve only touched that experience with music; but who knows if the analogy is a solid one. Makes me want to draw again, though 😉 Thanks Jann.

  7. Listen to an Interview with me about The Artist's Rule « Abbey of the Arts
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  8. Margaret
    July 10, 2011

    Thank you for this podcast; I look forward to more from this site. I too was one of the “Way of the Monk…” students, and have received word from amazon.ca that my copy of Christine’s new book is on its way to me. I await it with anticipation, for in the past year I have experienced the cultural “competition” of process versus production, and am eager to have this resource to help me return to the balance Christine was describing. Best wishes for future pod-casts.

  9. Betsy Mc
    July 11, 2011

    Great inaugural episode! I so appreciated the concept of the internal winter: allowing life’s tribulations to be natural progressions with lessons and opportunities of their own. Thank you to you both. Looking forward to the next one! (P.S. I’ve already pre-ordered a copy of the book!)

    • Nathan Rosquist
      July 14, 2011

      The next one could be you… 😉

  10. Sandra
    July 11, 2011

    Therapeutic arts – a name for something I have held unnamed for so long. Tabernacle… rhythm… the opportunity to interpret the divine breath of wisdom into an artistic expression relevant to our physical/social world. How I long to dwell here, present with all my senses, and find flow from the inner life. Thank you.

  11. Jacqui du Rocher
    July 11, 2011

    Thank you so much for this podcast. I have been following Christine’s blog on the ‘Abbey of the Arts’ since earlier this year and am finding myself drawn deeper and deeper into the connectivity between creativity, creation and the creator, which for me she describes so well in her blog and in this interview. I like the idea of conversion and transformation being ongoing processes, a journey which is both spiritual and creative, and yet at the same time ‘earthed’, as Christine puts it. The rhythms of prayer, nature’s seasons and our own personal seasons also spoke to me and the whole interview gave me a lot to think about. I am really looking forward to reading her book and gaining further insights. Thank you again, Jacqui.

  12. Genora W. Powell
    July 12, 2011

    “…always learning…always discovering,” Christina shares in her confident, reflective manner.
    Those words renew me as I battle with myself absorbed mind, so caught up in my pain body.
    But then she goes on, “work through…stay or run? Seasons in art….stay with the process,” I hear these words as Christina talks. I am to allow these words to radiate into my cells and to continue, “the journey of cultivating our imagination.” Another quote I noted as I listened to their taped exchange.
    I had been inspired to write a book last year through a dream request and spiders. I have never written before and indeed it has been a journey of the seasons. Thank you for clarifying this for me again, Christina.
    November of last year, an amazing life changing opportunity came to me. I started Christina’s, Lectio Divina online course. This pushed me up and over a wall that I had been attempting to climb over that had blocked me from God and “the something bigger working in me,” (C.V.P.) that I knew was knocking on my life line. A year before, I had an encounter close to the threshold of death and discovered I was not headed in the direction I wanted for the soul in me to depart to. So with these new experiences shouting at me for change, I shouted back with action!
    My Lectio Divina journal is amazing! I love going back and reading my reflections of my prayer time and how the spirit is working in my life. I now am going back through Christian’s course. So powerful, how different a verse speaks to me now. “A profound encounter with the heart of God. We are called to nothing short of transformation.” Christine says in her book. Right on!
    To sum this long tale, I have wavered from my writing with my pain body but as you speak, I am inspired to let the artist in me and the writers who be, flow through me and into my pages. I see and understand the seasons better now. Thank you for being a teacher of wisdom, Christina and most importantly, a kindred spirit. With gratitude and blessings, Genora

  13. InSpirit
    July 13, 2011

    i am particularly delighted by your invitation to cultivate an alternative path in the world. please consider this my rsvp. i accept your invitation.

  14. Donelda Seymour
    July 14, 2011

    I so appreciated this interview, as it gave a wonderful “window” into Christine’s personality. I thought, in fact, that just hearing the tone of her voice and the music of it, made me appreciate all the more the person behind the written words. It was facinating to hear some more about her spiritual journey and what life, and art have been teaching her. What struck me in listening to this podcast was the parallel between the artistic journey and the journey of life itself. Both take us through a creative process that has it’s ups and downs, and both seem to be inexplicably entwined together, to feed one another. Both, when entered into fully, push our beings towards growth, expansion and in many ways-love. In that sense, it can be said that we all are artists in our own way, and that allowing ourselves to enter into the expanse of the creative force in our every day lives, brings us closer to being more authentically true to our selves and to the God who created us. Our being is created in the very image of GOD, and this allows us an amazing capacity, if we give ourselves the space, time, and awareness, to express something of the eternal WOW of God! What an amazing thought -that we can enter into processes that explore the wildly beautiful, expansive, creativity of God himself-just by letting ourselves enter deeper into “being” human and embracing this wonderous journey called life! I would love to enter into more of this, and hope I can get a copy of her book and begin some more of my own explorations into creativity and growth!

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