Ep70 Pride is a Demon



Father Len reveals that pride is damaging lies we tell ourselves about ourselves.

Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom

  • Pride is a cancer that often goes undetected until it’s too late.
  • “The Truth Detector: an Ex-FBI Agent’s Guide for Getting People to Reveal the Truth” by Jack Schafer
  • The moment you tell a lie about yourself you are owned by the lie.
  • Happy people don’t need to feel superior.
  • The fall of humanity began when Adam and Eve were enticed by pride to define for themselves what is moral.
  • The prideful lie is always about portraying yourself as superior in some way.
  • Pride produces a damaging ripple effect on us and everyone around us.
  • Father Len compares Albert Einstein and Richard Dawkins to illustrate the damaging effects of pride and the positive effects of humility.
  • “I am not an atheist. The problem involved is too vast for our limited minds. We are in a position of a little child entering a huge library filled with books in many languages. The child knows somebody must’ve written those books.” – Albert Einstein
  • The prideful are not open to truth because they feel compelled to defend the lies they tell about themselves.
  • The prideful are always defensive and feel the need to posture, provoke, pick fights and bully because they fear wrestling with the truth.
  • Confident and humble people don’t fear grappling with the truth and allow themselves to be challenged, probed, and questioned.
  • The prideful can never be happy because they make their insecurities and flaws the center of their identities.
  • The prideful don’t recognize or appreciate their self-worth.
  • Lies about who you are, what you know, what you’re good at, and what you’re not good at are sure signs you have a pride problem.

Ep69 Becoming Truly Free



Father Len explains what it takes to become truly free and how the common American understanding of freedom leads to selfishness and narcissism.

Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom

  • Freedom involves being free from something in order to be free to become something.
  • The American Revolution was about becoming free from the tyranny of a king and the injustices and oppression of a political system.
  • 70% of Americans say they are free or mostly free.
  • Two thirds of Americans define freedom as being “free to do whatever I want.”
  • Being “free to do whatever I want” is an immature definition of freedom and the least likely to lead to happiness.
  • Being “free to do whatever I want” is a form of tyranny that allows you to intrude on the life and liberty of others.
  • “The Unbroken Thread: Discovering the Wisdom of Tradition in an Age of Chaos” by Sohrab Ahmari
  • We create laws to set the parameters for a working society.
  • To be free theologically means that we are always working on freedom. Working to become more free from the tyranny of selfishness, oppression, and injustice.
  • When the people of a country define freedom as selfishness, it will always be divided and destroyed.
  • People who report the highest level of happiness tend to be religious and meditate regularly.
  • People who report the most freedom from moral constraints tend to be the least happy.
  • “Suicide, A Study in Sociology” by Emile Durkheim
  • The really hard part of becoming more free is wrestling with our own egos and recognizing when we’re being selfish.
  • Christians who believe giving up liberties for the sake of others makes them less free don’t understand the freedom of the cross of Christ.

Ep68 Commitments, Happiness, Love and Having Kids



Reacting to why actor Seth Rogen says he and his wife don’t want kids, Father Len explains the relationship between making commitments, happiness, love, and having kids.

Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom

  • “It’s not an easy haul having kids. You can’t be narcissistic. You have to give yourself over to parenting. Kids have got to be the priority.” – Howard Stern
  • God asks of us that our lives be life-giving.
  • Living life for yourself, free from commitments, is an immature definition of happiness.
  • Commitments lead to greater happiness. Lack of commitments lead to greater unhappiness.
  • You’ll never find yourself through your feelings and aspirations. What defines you is your commitments.
  • “Without being bound to the fulfillment of our promises, we would never be able to keep our identities; we would be condemned to wander helplessly and without direction in the darkness of each person’s lonely heart, caught in its contradictions and equivocations.”-Hannah Arendt
  • Being unable to settle on something means not being settled ever.
  • People willing to commit to marriage and having children almost always test out happier than those who don’t.
  • The world tells us self-fulfillment comes from being free of commitments. Truth says fulfillment comes after commitments.
  • People who avoid commitments and constantly pursue pleasure in pursuit of an easy life tend to end up bitter and unhappy.
  • Christ challenges us to not to choose the easy way, to make a sacrifice and give ourselves away.
  • Life is not supposed to be easy, but rather a great adventure.
  • Pursuing pleasure as happiness always ends up in unhappiness.
  • Each year since 1972, there has been a gradual decline in people’s overall happiness in the United States. This despite the average person spending 22% more on eating out and entertainment, living in homes that have doubled in size, having huge screen TVs, access to the Internet, and social media.
  • The moral question is not whether you should or should not have kids. The moral question is why you would not want to have children.
  • Religion challenges us to look at everything in life and decide what kind of life we want to have.
  • Once you fall in love, you can’t help but want to give yourself away. That’s what real love feels like.
  • God’s perpetual command is to make an offering of our lives, to give ourselves away.
  • Those who don’t know the power of commitment are yet to know what love is.
  • God is a trickster who tricks people into falling in love and willing to sacrifice everything for those they love.

Ep67 The Myth of Self-Esteem



Father Len exposes the dangers of focusing on boosting self-esteem as a means to improve lives.


Ep66 Curing Shame



Father Len shares his favorite method for the difficult and necessary job of curing shame.

Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom

  • Shame can control you and make your life and the lives of those around you miserable.
  • Shame is that voice inside your head that constantly tells you that you are worthless.
  • Self-esteem programs are not effective for curing shame.
  • You have to learn how to love yourself in order to cure shame.
  • The practice of self-compassion is the antidote to shame.
  • Father Len introduces his version of the St. Ignatius Daily Examen that he uses and recommends to cultivate self-compassion and conquer shame.
  • People who are controlled by shame are usually less compassionate.
  • People who are able to change the shaming voices in their heads are more likely to develop grit and determination and overcome failures.
  • Father Len demonstrates how he used the St. Ignatius Daily Examen to avoid shame and produce self-compassion and personal growth after being a “jerk” to a homeless man and his dog.
  • Father Len tells the story of Oprah Winfrey using a daily gratitude journal to help overcome the shame of being raped, having a child out of wedlock and to learn that it’s the simple things in life, not her money, that bring her joy.
  • “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” by Maya Angelou
  • “What I Know for Sure” by Oprah Winfrey
  • You can pray as much as you want, but it will be hard to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit if the loud voices of shame are playing in your head.
  • Shame is connected with low grade physical pain.
  • If you are controlled by shame, every failure reminds you what a piece of trash you are.
  • If you are controlled by self-compassion, every failure says I’m going to get better and better.

Ep65 God’s Intention for Church



Father Len explains why God wants one universal church that accepts everybody and why the church established by Christ has split into over 400,000 denominations.


Ep64 Toxic Religion



Father Len introduces the process of deconstruction to help a listener detox her religious upbringing and purify her religious values, beliefs, and practices.


Ep63 Bible Symbols Revealed and Explained-Part 3 Oils



Father Len reveals how oils and their fragrances help fulfill God’s intention for religion and worship to be carnal and sensuous experiences.

Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom

  • Previous Bible symbols episodes: Ep45 Water, Ep56 Trees

Ep62 The Dangers of Anger



Father Len reveals his 30 year battle with anger and explains why it’s like a cancer that can destroy you unless you learn how to respond to it.

Highlights, Ideas, and Wisdom

  • Father Len responds to an email from the mother of a 15-year-old daughter who became depressed and filled with rage over the death of George Floyd.
  • Father Len reveals that anger has been one of his most common sins throughout his life.
  • Research has shown that nothing rots your body like anger.
  • “Anger is rottenness to your bones.” – Proverbs
  • “Anger disintegrates community.” – Proverbs
  • “A hot tempered man stirs up dissension.” – Proverbs
  • Anger destroys wisdom and the ability to make wise choices.
  • “A patient man has great understanding, but a quick tempered man displays foolishness, even after he cools down.” – Proverbs
  • Anger is blinding. When you’re angry, you always think you’re completely right.
  • Anger distorts your view of situations, yourself, your view of the world, and your view of your family. It can make you really stupid.
  • “A hot tempered man must pay a penalty. If you rescue him, you’ll just have to do it again and again and again.” – Proverbs
  • Anger is very addictive. It’s like the cocaine of emotions.
  • Anger feeds on itself. Anger begets anger.
  • Anger often obscures truth and leads to denial.
  • COVID 19 has become an excuse for anger about almost everything.
  • When you’re angry, it’s very difficult to recognize that you may be the problem.
  • Sometimes anger is love in motion to a threat to someone you love.
  • “Be angry, but sin not.” – St. Paul
  • “He that is angry without cause, sins. He who is not angry when there is cause, sins.” – St. John Chrysostom
  • The best response to anger is prayer, self-examination, self-discipline, and sacrifice.
  • Unreasonable impatience is the hotbed of vices.
  • Anger tends to focus you on the problem and obscures the solution.
  • Studies have shown that compassionate people are better at defining boundaries of unacceptable behavior.
  • “Compassion is the strong man’s tool. Anger is the weak man’s tool.” – Father Len

Ep61 True Friendship



Father Len takes a deep and challenging dive into the nature of true friendship and its profound effects on us throughout our lives. 

Highlights, Ideas and Wisdom

  • In Greek, the word friend or friendship is another word for love.
  • The word love in English is just another word for sex, not friendship.
  • Greeks believe there are four types of love. Love of one’s family, love of one’s friends, romantic love, and unconditional love.
  • Catholics believe friendship love prepares us for heaven.
  • Catholics believe all types of love speak about the great mystery of God.
  • Father Len explains why he believes the United States has a crisis of friendship.
  • Father Len describes much of the friendship present in the United States as what he calls cultural friendship. Relationships based not on reciprocal love, but on getting some sort of advantage, either economically or socially.
  • “Amen with many companions comes to ruin, but there’s a friend who sticks closer to you than a brother.” – Book of Proverbs
  • Today the word friend has been turned into a verb. We “friend” people we don’t really know on social media.
  • Friendship brings something into your life that family and romance can’t.
  • True friendship helps form us.
  • We are formed by God and the community of our family and friends.
  • “One can perish for lack of true friends or for making the wrong friends.” – Book of Proverbs
  • True friendship has a foundation that you discover. Some common interest, love, passion, vision, or truth.
  • Father Len explains the difference between friendship love and romantic love.