Joanna Harcourt-Smith (E22)

Joanna Harcourt-Smith is a fascinating woman whose life story spans her origins in Europe's power elite to a marriage to Timothy Leary. Our conversation spans questions like, "What has to happen for hate to turn to love?" I'd say that is the underlying theme of the conversation, which touches on politics, despair, race and class, and the idea of "being useful." Also I think this recording conveys her extraordinary energy and presence, her tremendous zest for life and acceptance of what is. Joanna is a true elder.




  1. I am very pleased to witness these accounts. As a child of the 60’s, I feel confident the innate compassionate abilities of the human condition will place goodness at the top of our priorities. Thank you for your work and for those interviewed supporting peace, compassion, and empathy.

  2. Joanna was never married to Timothy Leary. I wish she would just tell the truth about that as lying about something like that certainly undermines her credibility. The story is just as good with the truth bein told.

    • Legally no… But Joanna Harcourt-Smith was Tim’s 4th wife, in spirit, mind heart and body… In ALL respects that count! I am 67, have a daughter, and married twice…had amazing long intertwineings… But NEVER got a license for either. This is a melding, not a government saltiness contract!
      Maybe you truly don’t understand the distinction nor the distain some of us feel towards bullshit authority systems that jack is around and that some of us choose to NOT bend over our participate in this control system

  3. Thank you for a great conversation. This is very inspiring content and vibrations. Please do have more with Joanna in the future!

  4. What a nourishing way to start my day! Thank you for clearly articulating the intricacies of how we might invite one another to acknowledge the commonness of our trauma, to connect with compassion and humility so that we can be liberated from feeling hatred. What a gift…

  5. So enjoy your gift of bringing these ideas down to workable solutions.; ways to spread love! If we come from that place of not judging we open people’s hearts. That is what you do, & Joanne. Thank you for being you.

  6. I enjoyed the conversation. I’m happy when a new podcast comes out , and a little sad when it’s over because I’ll have to wait for the next one.

  7. Thank you both so much. I too was involved in London in the late 60s with marches and revolts and it was so good to be reminded of the sheer exuberance and joie de vivre my brother and I and our friends all experienced at that time. We really believed we had come to turn the world around, and to some extent we have. My brother working alongside Greenpeace in Auckland, New Zealand helped to bring about the political changes that enabled NZ to become a nuclear free zone, and I have worked tirelessly in the world of therapy and mental health for the last 50 years to bring about a change in consciousness. Thank you so much for helping me remember that although there is still so very much to do, our generation actually did bring about a crack in the cosmic egg that could start to let in the light. The Age of Aquarius is dawning however overcast and misty a morning it actually is as yet. Now its over to you younger ones to carry on what we started knowing we are right behind you, urging you on and empowering you from the side-lines.

  8. I love it when Charles says “I don’t know” as a response to a question from his partner in a conversation because what always follows is a contradiction in the form of a wonderful answer that is utterly informed and on point. In this case, Joanna asked, “what do we do to help the accountant making $110,000 feel this joy of having a purpose in this life?” Far from “not knowing”, the answer (partly) was “I guess, just by doing our part. There is a point where someone is ready to be broken open, to be shown a new version of their self. And then all you need to do is be the conductor on the river who simply says welcome.” Boom!

  9. “Sometimes we need to look hard at a person and remember that he is doing the best
    he can. He’s just trying to find his way. That’s all.”
    –Ernest Thompson

    I love this pod cast. I grew up with a father who had adopted a philosophy of separateness and the idea that his race and religion was elite. I too adopted this belief. When I was 19 I found that is was hurting people that I just naturally cared for by being in their presence. This dissonance between what I believed and what I felt caused me to dump the ideas in a general way. Then as I continued into my adult hood I was able to make small little progresses of letting go of the old beliefs one instance at a time. However i find I might regress back a little from time to time. My experience is that when someone is real and shows me their hurt instead of their anger I can’t help but believe them and then take a second look at what I am doing. Also it is hard to argue against my own pain, that has become very real to me also and I have learned to follow my own truth as a guiding star. When I can get through my anger I find a calm place on the other side. A place that is relaxed and ready to engage. It’s anger that separates me from connection to others. And I too agree with Charles that narratives that give people a feeling of being special or having a place in this world are especially powerful and intoxicating to those who are hurting and feeling lonely. Lets all create a new story together as we “cultivate” love and follow are own truths in community together.

Leave a Reply