Tapestrywith Mary Hynes


Lessons from a war zone: How to emotionally survive and flourish in the pandemic

When COVID-19 struck, Aisha Ahmad recognized very few people around her had lived through a large-scale disaster. Despite being a professor of political science, she found herself acting as an online counsellor, sharing wisdom she earned living in conflict around the world.

Soundtrack for the Soul — The 2021 Edition

We spoke to five Canadians who’ll be turning to music this darker-than-normal winter, to keep them inspired — and keep them company — in the new year. If you have a song and story to share, please send us an email: tapestry@cbc.ca.

Protecting nature, act of faith: Muslim women are leading the charge on climate activism

Memona Hossain has spoken to dozens of Muslim women around the world whose faith inspires their work as leading climate activists. Her field, Applied Ecopsychology, helps explain people’s deeply personal connections to the earth, and Hossain says spirituality is a crucial element.

How this woman reconnected with her Métis ancestry, and the land they live on

Jenna Vandal always knew she was Métis, but her family’s history was hidden from her. After years of hard work and dedication, she has reconnected with her heritage and the land, and found that the past contains a blueprint for reconciliation.

Shambhala sex abuse allegations go back to beginnings of spiritual group, says ex-member

Shambhala, the branch of Tibetan Buddhism headquartered in Canada, has long taught the virtue of "basic goodness." But a Tapestry special reveals the organization's history is full of allegations of sexual misconduct.

Women who find meaning and purpose on the land

You’re going to meet two women with profound connections to the land. Memona Hossain is a PhD student in Applied Ecopsychology. She has spoken to dozens of Muslim women around the world whose faith drives their work as climate activists. Jenna Vandal recounts the long, winding path to connecting with her Métis heritage.

A year into the pandemic, many Canadians are bored. That might be an opportunity

Philosopher Andreas Elpidorou says the widespread experience of boredom during the pandemic is far from dull. He believes taking a closer look at our boredom can help us craft a better life and a more just society.

When running is your language, you use it to carry the stories of your people

The fertile fields in Washington state provided Noé Alvarez a playground and a place to unwind, but they were a source of pain for migrant workers in his community who toiled for a better life. On an epic transnational run, Alvarez learned to carry the stories of others, made peace with his past and rewrote his family’s story.

Running against time

Writer Noé Alvarez on finding a new language in the act of running and how he uses it to carry the stories of his ancestors and come to terms with his own. Philosopher Andreas Elpidorou says the widespread experience of boredom during the pandemic is far from dull. He believes taking a closer look at our boredom can help us craft a better life and a more just society.

Basic Goodness - Episode 2

Episode Two looks at sexual abuse in spiritual communities from the perspective of survivors. It explores what tends to happen to survivors who speak out against their spiritual leaders and groundbreaking ways we can listen to abuse survivors who choose to remain silent.

Basic Goodness - Episode 1

Episode One looks at sexual abuse allegations that surfaced in the Shambhala Buddhist community and explores the power imbalances in guru-student relationships. We ask why this keeps happening in spiritual communities around the world and hear from Shambhala's board of directors.

The world is full of delight if you choose to see it

After spending a year keeping track of all the delightful things he encountered, poet Ross Gay published his insights in “The Book of Delights.” He says observing small joyful moments is a social and political act in a world that prefers proficiency.

Making visual art for people who are blind

Visual art was Taylor Katzel’s passion and he wanted to teach art for a career. But just before he started teacher’s college, he was struck by an unexpected condition that left him blind. In Luke Williams' doc Art-cessbility, Katzel tells his story and makes a trip to the AGO to discover how inclusive design — a paradigm which focuses on making art and design accessible to people with disabilities — could allow him to continue to explore and experience visual art.

He grew up with a strict code of honesty. It played havoc with his life

Michael Leviton grew up in a household where speaking your mind and being truthful were the highest virtues. But once he became an adult, Leviton couldn’t pass off his brazenness as being an eccentric child. He had to deal with the consequences of his truths.

The delight in what we see and what we can't

Discovering moments of delight and making art accessible.

What if you were held accountable for every word you ever said?

Anglican priest Malcolm Guite wrote a poem in 2011 in response to a tragedy, titled What If. The poem reflects on what it means to be responsible about the things we say — and it’s only become more relevant.

From light bulbs to coffee cups: How the objects we create shape us

It ain’t no thing. Or is it? The objects around us can have a profound impact on how we think about and interact with the world. From the scientific to the sacred, human beings may invent the things, but those creations end up shaping humanity.

What this writer learned about looking ahead and planning for disasters

Bina Venkataraman, author of The Optimist’s Telescope: Thinking Ahead in a Reckless Age, studies the art of looking ahead for solutions during dangerous times. It's a skill she honed while working on the Ebola Task Force for former U.S. president Barack Obama.

When to be still, when to be stirred: what mystics can teach us about patience during COVID-19

Decades in a room with no way out was a choice for anchoresses like Julian of Norwich during the Middle Ages, but it doesn’t mean it was easy. Writers Paul Dafydd Jones and Kaya Oakes explore what it means to be patient in the time of a pandemic and what mystics like Julian of Norwich have to teach us.

Searching for Black Confederates: History teacher battles one of the American Civil War's most stubborn myths

For decades, a pervasive myth that Black men fought for the South in the American Civil War has plagued historians and distorted collective memory of that event. Historian Kevin Levin says that false narrative fuels the racial divide today.

'I didn't feel like I even existed': One young Black man's experience touring a former slave plantation

Nygel Turner was expecting a history lesson when he toured a Louisiana plantation with his dad. His experience illustrates the harm that can come when parts of the story are distorted or erased.

Uncivil History

From plantation tours to the myth of the Black Confederate soldier, the history of slavery and the American Civil War has often been whitewashed. In this special episode, Tapestry investigates how distorted versions of the past can do so much harm in the present.

Face hunger: Craving connection during Covid-19

As a portrait artist, Riva Lehrer says faces are her whole life. She’s also someone with spina bifida - and that means people give all kinds of unwelcome attention to her body. When that happens, her face has always been her ally. With our faces necessarily hidden under masks - she is navigating a new way of connecting with the world.

Book giveaway

We're giving away a copy of Riva Lehrer’s book, Golem Girl. If you'd like to be entered in the random draw, email us at tapestry@cbc.ca with "FACES" in the subject line. Follow this link to learn about CBC's contest rules.

Soundtrack for the Soul — The 2021 Edition

Our continuing series on music as a soothing source of company. Five guests share the songs accompanying them into 2021.