Clay Tumey wraps up the first season of the EPP Podcast with clips and commentary.
For more information about EPP, please visit EnneagramPrisonProject.org.
Hi, my name is Clay Tumey and I am an ambassador for the Enneagram Prison Project. Over the past year, we've used this podcast as an opportunity to tell the story of EPP as we approached our 10th anniversary, which we ultimately celebrated last month on April 12 2022. Today, I'm sad to announce that this will be the final episode of the podcast. And also, that's totally not true. I'm just kidding. I gotcha. Sorry. I think that's funny, and I hope you thought that was wanting to maybe won't anyways. Hey, so what's happening is clay, I want to talk to you today about a few things that are going to be happening with the podcast. Moving forward, I also want to share some of my favorite moments from this first season. And this, I guess you could consider this like a little bonus episode before we begin Season Two next month. And by the way, season two will officially begin next month in June, it will be on the first Tuesday of the month, which is June 7, and I'll go into some details. We're not going to be doing the 12th of the month anymore. And I think we're going to try to do the first Tuesday of every month. There's a truck driving down my street right now hopefully you can't hear that. Anyways, this will be a very informal conversation. There's no guest there's no anybody sitting across from me to have conversation with just you just me having a little chat. Now, no, this was this was only going to be, or at least I said in the beginning that it was it was a one year commitment from me. And I didn't know what happened after the year was over. I didn't have any plans one way or the other. And I thought of it more of like, Yeah, I'll do the I'll do this anniversary, you know, build up thing. And then I'll cross that bridge when I get there as far as what happens after that. And I can tell you that after a year of talking to 20 plus very interesting people that I absolutely love this, I'm falling in love with sitting down from people and hearing their stories. And I have a very unique role in the podcast and that I feel like I'm basically the number one listener, like I get, I get the I have the pleasure of listening to everybody before you do. But ultimately, at the end of the day, I still feel like I'm just a listener. And yeah, I get to talk to and I play some role in editing and, you know, processing and making sure that things sound just right. And, you know, there's more to it than only listening for me. But primarily, I feel like, I just have a front row seat to some of the most amazing perspectives in the game as far as I'm concerned. So I love it. And I want to keep doing it. So that's that's what's going to happen. So what's going to be on the episode today if there's no guests clay? Well, I'm glad you asked. How about we just go back through the first season in here, some of the key points of each episode. I don't know if you have any favorite moments? I know I certainly do. The things that people said that just hit me like a ton of bricks or things that I just thought were funny. I have timestamps for a lot of these things. And I have clips that I've shared with friends. I also remember in the moment things that people have said that just were just that just floored me. For for most of the first season of the podcast, I talked to my mom, the day that the uploads, went, went live. And so I had conversations with her about each episode as well. So I remember a lot of the things that she pointed out the things that people said, and probably most notably, the things that were said by Phil, one of our guides in Minnesota. And of course Russ, who was here in Dallas visiting and I had the chance to talk to him. So everybody probably has their own perspective or not probably everybody definitely has their own perspective. And the things that stuck out to them from the podcast. And I certainly have mine and so if it's okay, I would just like to share a few quotes and I'll just play these as clips. One right after the other with no context, I don't think most of them will require a lot of context anyways. So yeah, let's have a listen at a year and review of the Enneagram Prison Project, podcast season one. I don't know how he's gonna try to make that like a formal introduction to this, but let's just listen. We're gonna start with Vic, back in episode one. And we'll do This role fromUnknown:
I don't know if it was from the reading, I think it was more or less than the interaction between Susan and the way that she viewed us and the way that she felt the way that she actually talked to me as a human being that right there as part of the, the notation in my head that they're only said that there's hope. No, I mean, that somebody is actually here for me, and not because they want to collect the paycheck, you know what I mean? They're sincere about what they were trying to teach. And then going back to the book, and actually reading the book, and it's showing me a little bit more about myself, but I mean, in the classroom is where it gave me the most, I'll never, I'll never forget that in the feeling. You know, I tell her, I will tell us over and over again, and I'll tell anybody this over and over again, even though she's like that lady, she's right. I know, I did the work. But she showed up, she saved my life, she gave me that opportunity to take that step into the unknown and figure life out.Alex Senegal:
I remember distinctly when that aha moment came to me. And when I was like, Okay, this sum to this thing. Susan Harris shinjang, she was wanted to guess that came inside the teachers. And she's a nine. And at this point of time, I'm, I'm really trying to wrap my mind around how this thing works, and kind of figure it out before I learn it. If that makes any sense.Clay Tumey:
I totally does.Alex Senegal:
And so she asked me this question, man. And it almost brought me to tears. She asked me, What do I need? And I could not answer that question. Because I had not a clue. Would Alex need it? Because Alex never paid attention to himself. And that's when I was like, wow, the you know, and it blew me away to the point where I said, I would never, ever not be able to answer that question again. And the only way that can happen is that I pay attention to me, and I start to know me that I start to be important to me. And that's when they told the teaching started making sense, the purpose and just the whole ground level. And the readings even started making sense. And it was real, you know, we can't afford to forget where we came from. We can't afford to forget the history as we move forward into the future. Because the possibilities of what what happened to someone else, it's a reality for us, this is not a that might have been this, this will happen. Yeah, that's how I approach it each and every day, I'd be like, you know, what, if I do this, if I make this choice, this is what's going to happen in which helps me make the right choice. Because if I put a choice in there that I might the word, it might work, that means a too big of a gap for me to do. And so I can't afford that. So I knew and the reality is, it may not happen to everybody else. But this isn't gonna happen to beClay Tumey:
like, I had no idea of how to go through life in a healthy manner. I didn't even know how to identify when I was healthy or unhealthy. So, like, for me, like all these little basic, you know, things in life that people take for granted, because it's easy for them. Like for me waking up and making good decisions, is it takes effort, you know what I mean? Like it's hard work, right? Yeah. Like, that's what I'm saying. Maybe I'm understanding a little bit by saying it takes effort, but it's not easy. For me at least I can't speak for anybody. And I don't have that thing in my brain, you know, and I say this all the time, dude, like, I'm not a different person, I just make different choices. I don't, I don't always care about what's right or wrong. You know, I just do things that I think will be fun, or will be good or will be interesting, or whatever. It's like this conversation, there was no consideration about is this a good idea or a bad idea? It's just like, I want to do it, I want to do it. Now I'm doing it. Right. So having the understanding of type and knowing what it means to be, in my case at Type Five, and how that can work very well sometimes, and how it could work against me sometimes. It can make life easy, it can make life hard, like knowing more about that has just made life easier for me. Those are a couple of snippets from episode number one, chopping it up with Victor Soto and Alex Senegal, two of my fellow ambassadors. In the second episode of the podcast, I sat down with Susan Lessig. And like I said, please correct me if this is not accurate, but it doesn't I don't like it was I want to serve the incarcerated. And this is how I'm going to do it. It was more like, I just want to serve people. And oh, by the way, they're inviting me to prison. Is that fair to say?Susan Olesek:
That's true. I didn't have I wasn't ever seeking out how to get myself in a prison. I have always been a social justice seeker. I have always been somebody who feels convicted by things that affect the masses, and especially things that are unfair.Clay Tumey:
So what's going through your head when you're like, Alright, I'm about to go in and do this thing. ISusan Olesek:
honestly don't remember feeling. I don't know if I can say any but much at all trepidation in the way of the prison part. The I wasn't, I didn't feel scared by that. I felt excited. I didn't feel nervous, like or apprehensive, because of the fact that it was a facility. I didn't feel any of that. I didn't. I didn't. I did feel really, really terrified that I wouldn't remember the Enneagram enough, or that I didn't know, all the stuff. I did feel a lot of self doubt. And yeah, all those all those sorts of things. But in terms of the prison part, I just felt very sure that that was where I wanted to be, and like kind of impatient to get there. I think a lot of the hope that I feel when I'm on the inside is working people who have been, you know, raised in childhoods full of darkness and have really done maybe some very dark things. I think it's that that touch on a touchstone I guess it's not that like a reference point for how bad things have been able then, is what gives people such equanimity on the outside of her Ambassador say this in their own way, all of them. But like, I'm so grateful for how things are today, because I know where I've been, and I have perspective on what really matters. And I can feel my own place and the world because I know where I'm not. And it's just, it strikes me. And I think that you are someone who's come through a lot of dark, and you are someone who's here to shed a lot of light. And I love your voice. I love how you're amplifying different pieces of this project for people who might not have heard all the little nooks and crannies and turned over a few stones today toClay Tumey:
play. Thank you, Susan. So Episode Three was EPP goes to jail. And this is when we spoke with Neelam Wadhwani, who was the program manager at a correctional facility in California. And I'm leaving out the name because I actually don't remember if we said it on the episode itself. And sometimes we can't say those things. But if you haven't heard that episode, I would highly recommend going back to listen to it. It's an interesting exchange. Because not only is it nice to talk with Neelam because she is she's one of our earliest accomplices with EPP, she helped us get in to the facility there, she was a program manager. So without her help, I actually don't think it was possible to even get in there. And at that facility is where EPP met many of our current ambassadors. And one of those ambassadors, Victor Soto was on the call for that episode as well. And there was an exchange at the end is the only clip I'm going to play from that episode, where you hear Vic, just express gratitude. And I'll only say that, and I won't give more context, other than to say that these things don't happen. It's very rare that someone who is incarcerated, gets out and turns around and is thankful for someone who worked at the jail, or the prison where they were locked up. As someone who's been incarcerated myself, I can tell you, I don't have a lot of favorable opinions for those who worked for the state who work for the federal government, the people who work at the prisons, in jails where I was incarcerated, I don't think they're all bad people. I just don't always have a lot of pleasant things to say about them. Because I don't genuinely, or generally feel that they ever cared about me. And so I think that's part of what makes this exchange so beautiful. And that's why I would like to share that with you again today.Victor Soto:
You know, the thing is, is like, if she wants to take that step into letting Susan in, you know, my life wouldn't be the way it is now. You know, so, you know, you don't have a small part to play in it. You really have one of the biggest parts to play in my life changing events. Whether you can see that or not, because you gave me the opportunity to meet Susan gave Susan an opportunity to meet me. And to help me, you know further on my, my life and changing, you know, my behavioral patterns and my thought process and learning how to trust. So if it wasn't for you in the room like, honestly, this, the things you see about my life and the way that my life is going would have been possible because if he didn't let her in, then I wouldn't have knownUnknown:
her. So, you know,Victor Soto:
I just want to thank you for giving, you know, guys like me the opportunity to further our life, and to see what our life can be. I never had a chance to tell you that. And I'm glad I could tell you now.Clay Tumey:
Yeah, me too. The world is better with people like Neela Motwani. And, you know, there are people who work in corrections who are on our side. Who are EPP accomplices, and even those who we don't know who aren't affiliated with us directly. They're still doing good things and it's it's actually it's, you know, just full disclosure. It's hard for me to remember that sometimes because I know what it's like to be locked up and to just be surrounded by people who just don't give a shit. So thank God for Neelam thank God for people like Neelam and yeah, and they're growing in numbers, by the way. And it's been a pleasure to meet a lot of folks along the way. Who are, you know, as I say, on our side, they're, they're an accomplice, EPP accomplices, Episode Four was the reentry episode, this is where I sat down with a number of ambassadors to talk about reentry, and specifically what it's like that first day out of prison, and some of the hurdles that you might face or how easy it could be if you just say, I'm not going back. And I'm going to pay attention to what's in front of me instead of what's behind me. And there were, I think, five different conversations, five different perspectives with ambassadors. And I'm not going to play a clip here. I don't have any particular clips that I want to pull in and drop here. I will say that that was that was the first two hour episode that we did Episode Four reentry. And it's worth it's worth a listen, if you haven't, if you haven't heard those ambassadors stories about their first days, weeks, months out of prison, then go give it a listen. It's pretty, it's pretty cool. Episode Five was a conversation with Russ Hudson. And it was not intentional. For episode five to be with a Type Five talking to another Type Five, it just worked out that way. Ross happened to be coming through town. On it. He was speaking with some non EPP stuff. And I actually don't remember, remember the details. I just know he was here for another event. And I messaged Thank you. Thankfully, Rick Olesek knew that Russell's going to be in Dallas. And so I messaged rest. And I was like, Hey, man, if you got a minute, would you be down to sit down? Sit down in front of a couple of microphones and have a chat for the podcast. And of course Ross was like, Yeah, sure. Sounds good. And, you know, he's my buddy, we talked about some Enneagram stuff. We also talked about some things that I think most people have never heard us talk about simply because, you know there's there's not always a reason for him to talk about locking people in a closet. And and and try it. Well, I'll just let him tell the story. Oh, dear. You can narrow it down to three stories if you want.Russ Hudson:
Oh, my I you know, I would just the statue the most. When I got a little older, I can remember them. Or when I was a young kid. I did some crazy ones. You know, I these guys were trying to steal something from me and I locked him in a closet and I taped up around the edges and hooked up a vacuum cleaner was trying to suck the air out of the Mize. That's a little mad behavioral problem mad scientist style. They didn't die and they didn't die, fortunately. But, you know, I, when I was in the frenzy of doing that, I wouldn't have minded I was just it was really mad. But, you know, I just had those kind of mad scientist kind of ideas. And you know, sometimes it was simple. You know? When I was in junior high I remember certain guys picking on me and I had two things going for me one was that some of the really tough kids that were you know, headed for a life of challenge, shall we say? They always like we were both the weirdos were the outliers we were the misfits. So they kind of looked after me When just the kind of regular school bullies who were just never interesting people, the real badass kids would take care of me and sometimes take care of them if you know what I mean. Exactly. So I had like a little posse, which was good,Clay Tumey:
was good. And also good was the rest of that conversation, because he also went on to talk about, he had someone that was taking his lunch or eating a sandwich or something like that. So he replaced, replaced his food with some things that he grew in a lab, shall we say? And a lot of those stories, you just don't really get to hear from someone like Russ in that setting. Because, frankly, most of the time, you're they're asking questions about the Enneagram, or about things that are related to the Enneagram, or Egypt or other things like that. And one of the things that I find so liberating and enjoyable about the podcast is that I don't really have anyone that's telling me, stick to the Enneagram. Talk about this talk about that. It's actually really nice to just sit down and say, Hey, so yeah, sure. You're Russ Hudson, Type Five, master the Enneagram, you know, Guru, all these things. But what else do people like not know. And so episode five, we discovered a lot of things about rest that we might not have previously known. And then also, I mean, the episode was over an hour long. So naturally, the Enneagram and other teachings do weave their way back into the conversation. So if you haven't heard that episode, I would just say, it's, it's worth the Listen, I'll just understate it by saying that. Episodes six and seven are when we started talking to guides, we spoke with Camilla, Dana, and Phil, and Suzanne, across those four episodes. And I think for me, this is when I started realizing the impact that the podcast could have. And of course, with Russ and some of the things that he shared about having self compassion, and some of the things that he said that would creep their way into the conversations that I would have with my mom, after the podcasts came out. A lot of those experiences continued with episodes six and seven, and particularly with Phil, in Episode Seven, where he spoke about his life as not only an Enneagram guide and Enneagram teacher, but also as a pastor in his church. Yeah,Phil GebbenGreen:
well, I was introduced to it by a Lutheran pastor, so that I could sense what the good heartedness, the spiritual groundedness that it felt, but I still feel to this day that the Enneagram comes out of so I mean, we could talk more about this because it's fascinating, but that like I, my Christian theology, and EPP, theology, cosmology approach, match, really, really, I don't have like set aside, my Christian faith, I do kind of set it aside, I don't like even the first couple of times in prison every once in a while, I would try to make a little connection, partly because so many of the women in the class connection to what thank you for asking connection between I would say something like, this is the same kind of thing it says in the New Testament gotcha, when Paul says, partly because so many women in the class in Shakopee are clearly in really, we're really very faithful Christian, faithful kind of people. But every time I it didn't feel good to me, even if I thought that was a really good connection, like it didn't actually work in the class. And so now, I don't talk about that at all, when I'm teaching an EPP but inside of myself, what like a highway two lanes going the same direction.Clay Tumey:
Yeah. And I will forever be grateful for Phil's description there. And his explanation about how faith and spiritual work can coincide. And they they are often going the same direction right next to each other, and there's no conflict. And they don't get in the way of each other and they don't overlap and, you know, try to direct the other one in a different way or anything like that. That's they're literally just supplements for each other, which is a, which is a big deal. It's a big deal for a lot of people. And I really appreciate Phil walking us through that. And I don't know that I've ever even told him how big of a deal that conversation was, for me, in particular because of my mom. And, you know, I talk I talk about my mom often and so this is not likely the first time you've heard me say that, you know, her journey with EPP in the last year as has been pretty neat been pretty cool, you know, gone through some of some of our public programming. And, you know, that began with the podcast I think and a lot of waise and hearing Russ talk through some things. And also hearing, Phil and so many of the other guides and ambassadors talk through some thoughts through some ideas. And it's just been kind of cool to sit and watch that happen. So yeah, I think at this point, as when I realized that the, that the that the podcast can serve a purpose beyond just talking with the listener, I think it actually can be a catalyst for someone to begin their own journey. And I know in at least one case, that's been exactly what has happened. So I'm going to pause here. And yes, I know that I've only made it halfway through the first season there. But that is intentional, hopefully, it's just enough of a tease for you to say to yourself, gee, maybe I should go back and just listen to all those episodes all over again. And I know I will, probably very soon, because I'm gonna be spending a lot of time in the sky and writing airplanes, different places. And if you hear anything in any of those episodes, episodes, one through 14 from season one, if you hear anything that that is worth revisiting or discussing, or if you just want to say, Hey, I thought this about that, you know, feel free to tell somebody tell me tell anyone, most of the people that year on the podcast can be reached via email, just their name at Enneagram, prison project.org. That's not always the case. But it's usually the case, definitely the case with me clay at Enneagram, prison project.org. And if you're in the Slack community, with the various channels of communication there. I'm also available there as our most other people, there's also a Slack channel, specifically for the podcast. And you're more than welcome to share any thoughts or ideas there as well. And I think, eventually, I'd like to see the Slack channel there turn into a sort of ongoing discussion, or townhall, just chat or however you want to call that. To see what people like and what they want to hear more about, or even just see what they think about some of the ideas that we've shared on the podcast. So I wanted to keep this episode, under 30 minutes. I don't think I'm going to make it there, because we're already rolling up on 29 minutes. And I've got a few more things to say. So season two, what's it going to be about? I'm glad you asked. So we won't be looking forward to a 10th anniversary since we've already passed it. And I think the idea is just to move forward talking about who we are today and what we're doing now, and potentially what we might be doing in the near future or even the distant future. I'm going to keep talking to guides, we're going to try to have more conversations with ambassadors. And I think we're getting a better idea, or at least I am when I record these how to do them in a way that's efficient, and hopefully somewhat structured, with the idea that it's still structure free. As silly as that might sound. And, you know, whatever, whatever happens in the coming season, I guess I'll experience it when you do. But the idea will be to keep talking to the people who make the project happen. The guides, the ambassadors, the faculty, the board members, the participants, the students, the people on the inside the people on the outside, the builders, everyone, there's a lot of people doing a lot of stuff. And thankfully, I'm in a position where I get to sit down across from those people and ask them, Hey, what's going on right now? What do you do? And what are you here for and what's important to you. And so those conversations are going to keep happening. And hopefully, as the second season rolls on, we will learn some new things about EPP and what the future looks like. So again, on the first Tuesday of next month, which is June the seventh, that will be when you can expect the next episode of the new season. And I'm looking forward to it. I already know, the next few weeks have a lot of opportunity. And I just I'm just bubbling with joy to be able to share some of the things with you that have happened in the past few weeks, which and now where we sit here, it's the next few weeks, but by the time we talk again, it'll be the past few weeks. So that's how that's how time works, I guess. So for now, I will just say farewell. And thank you for being here. Thank you for giving us someone to talk to because as I said earlier, without you the listener. This kind of doesn't really happen.