TC 301- The Transformational Journey: Interview with Mark Nepo

TC 301- The Transformational Journey: Interview with Mark Nepo

Welcome to a very special edition of the Transformation Cafe podcast. We are pleased to present Robin’s interview with Mark Nepo – best-selling author, poet, teacher, and philosopher. This episode was recorded at a special retreat that Mark held at Pine Manor Resort in Lake Elsinore, California.

In this interview Mark talks about his transformational journey, how being a cancer survivor has influenced his writing and his life, and shares stories from his most recently published book called Inside the Miracle. He very graciously tells some of the stories he shared with the group at the retreat.

Robin with Mark Nepo-cropped

Robin Masiewicz with Mark Nepo

About Mark Nepo:

Mark Nepo is a poet and philosopher who has taught in the fields of poetry and spirituality for over 35 years. A New York Times #1 bestselling author, he has published 13 books and recorded eight audio projects. Mark has been interviewed twice by Oprah Winfrey as part of her Soul Series radio show, and was interviewed by Robin Roberts on Good Morning America. As a cancer survivor, Mark devotes his writing and teaching to the journey of inner transformation and the life of relationship. Mark’s work is widely accessible and used in spiritual retreats, healing and medical communities, and more. His work has been translated into 20 languages, and he continues to offer readings, lectures, and retreats. We recommend that you check out Mark’s audio books so you’ll not only experience his wisdom, but you’ll get to hear his lovely baritone voice.



Think of questions as a door you would open that you want to walk through with someone. Questions are thresholds to journeys, not where we get answers.

Mark talks about his latest book, Inside the Miracle, which collects 30 years of his inquiry into suffering and healing, and two new books that will be coming out later this year : The One Life We’re Given: Finding the Wisdom that Waits in Your Heart and a collection of over 200 of his poems called The Way Under the Way: The Place of True Meeting published by Sounds True. Both books are available for pre-order through Amazon.


Mark will be appearing at an event in Seattle July 16 – 17 sponsored by Sounds True called  Making Sense of Our Experience:The Heartwork of Resilience . Click the link for more information or to register for this great event (save $50 and register before June 1).

You can view Mark’s speaking schedule through 2017 at his website.


If you’re in the Southern California area, we encourage you to register for next year’s retreat at Pine Manor, a unique facility nestled in the Cleveland National Forest near Lake Elsinore. The owner, Gail Warner, has integrated Mark’s poetry into the facility, so it’s a great place to spend time with him.

  • APRIL 7-9, 2017: Pine Manor Retreat Center, Inside the Miracle, Weekend Retreat 1, register at Pine Manor, (web link), or contact Gail Warner at 949-552-1633
  • NOV 3-5: Pine Manor Retreat Center, Inside the Miracle, Weekend Retreat 2, register at Pine Manor, (web link), or contact Gail Warner at 949-552-1633

Pine Manor Logo

During the conversation Mark references Patience: The Art of Peaceful Living by Allan Lokos. You can click the image below to purchase your own copy.

“Mark Nepo is a Great Soul. His resonant heart—his frank and astonishing voice—befriend us mightily on this mysterious trail.” —Naomi Shihab Nye, author of You and Yours, 19 Varieties of Gazelle: Poems of the Middle East, and Red Suitcase

“Mark Nepo is one of the finest spiritual guides of our time.” —Parker J. Palmer, author of A Hidden Wholeness and The Courage to Teach

“Mark Nepo joins a long tradition of truth-seeking, wild-hearted poets—Rumi, Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, Mary Oliver—and deserves a place in the center of the circle with them.” —Elizabeth Lesser, cofounder of Omega Institute, author of Broken Open: How Difficult Times Can Help Us Grow

“Nepo is a consummate storyteller with a rare gift for making the invisible visible.” —Publishers Weekly


  1. Mikey
    Apr 29, 2016

    Mark Nepo talks about when he has a strong belief about something to never side with himself in an argument and to also turn his strong belief into a question. Brilliant! It gives you the opportunity to revisit your beliefs and revise them as you go. I also like what Matt Kahn offers: He says, when we think we know what is “right,” to ask, “What if this/that only works for me?” It gives spaciousness to each person’s sovereignty and helps us to not impose our truths, values, and beliefs upon others’ experiences

    • Transformation Cafe
      Apr 29, 2016

      Yes, Mark shared some very profound thoughts in this interview. Your point reminds me of Jonathan Haidt’s book on The Righteous Mind where he explains why people cling to absolute views of right/wrong, good/bad, sacred/profane, and so on. If we are closed off to the other person’s view point, then our beliefs are essentially written in stone. And stones don’t grow. Our perspective shrinks to the point that we see only a very narrow view of what’s really there. I like your analogy of “spaciousness”, very appropriate. And we recently started reading Matt Kahn’s work, so we’re on the same wavelength!

  2. Amy Frost
    May 1, 2016

    I enjoyed the interview so much! It was connected and fun. I felt like Robin’s presence with Mark helped me to get to know him as a person and understand his work so much more. I so look forward to his new work. I will never look at wonder and questions the same way ever again. Thank you for bringing Mark to dine with us!!!

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