Last Thursday night, NYC’s flagship Barnes & Noble in Union Square held a special event featuring a conversation about faith between the eclectic, very successful Moby (musician, vegan, tea entrepreneur, and self-proclaimed Christian–sort of), and Chicago Sun Times religion reporter Cathleen Falsani, in honor of her new book, “The God Factor.” The book is a collection of Falsani’s columns of the same name (with a few additions purely for the book). Each one features an interview between Falsani and a public figure, from up and coming politicians (Barack Obama), to the musically and generally famous (Bono), to the infamous (Hugh Hefner is the most startling entry).
Though Moby doesn’t have his own turn in Falsani’s book, they teamed up to give a live demonstration of how Falsani approaches her task of revealing the private religious and spiritual persuasions of the famous for public consumption.
Over the course of an hour, with Falsani’s direction, the audience learned of Moby’s colorful, spiritual history–from a Taoist phase during his teenage years to impress a girl, to his “pro-gnosis” period in college when he and friends decided to believe in everything (get it: pro-gnosis), to his conversion to what he described as an annoyingly, righteous Christian for about a decade, and onward to where he is now: a Christian believer, though one reluctant to label himself Christian. Moby spoke about the spiritual beliefs behind his veganism (don’t hurt any sentient beings), growing up in Connecticut and attending the Bush’s church (turns out, George W. Bush bought that Texas ranch in 1999 at the suggestion of Karl Rove to make him seem less aristocratic), and most interestingly of all, his vision of the spirituality of music. Music, like the spirit, is the only art you can’t touch, he explained. Yet it’s also the only art you can experience with your eyes closed and it is one that permeates the entire body–just like the Holy Spirit.
Funny at times, a bit over the top at others, but wonderfully interesting, smart, and entertaining overall, listening to Moby speak about all things spiritual and religious was a treat. For more where that came from, check out Falsani’s fascinating book, “The God Factor,” and just imagine the conversation happening before you.