Finding Life Affirmation in Troubled Times: Humanities as Practice Toward Maturity

No sensible man [sic] would insist that these things are as I have described them, but I think it is fitting for a man to risk the belief – for the risk is a noble one – that this, or something like this, is true about our souls and their dwelling places, since the soulContinue reading “Finding Life Affirmation in Troubled Times: Humanities as Practice Toward Maturity”

Loving Democracy, Flying at Dusk

In the midst of vaccination controversy someone remarked that we need a better balance between individual and communal dimensions. Yes, but aren’t we talking about something beyond only balance or mixture, or transaction – something more like mutuality or synergy? I think we are pointing to the very quality that makes democracy so difficult toContinue reading “Loving Democracy, Flying at Dusk”

Three Winters: Living the Pandemic of Covid and Trump

Introduction: Pandemic as Torpedo Fish I have spent the last three years both newly retired and locked down in the Pandemic of Covid and Trump. Under shroud of pandemic, I have been able to write as a public intellectual, seeking to provide resources of interpretation insupport ofan emerging worldview and lifeway that could take usContinue reading “Three Winters: Living the Pandemic of Covid and Trump”

Glimmers: The Call of a New Way

The new way of being that is necessary for our survival as anything we would want to call “human” is emerging, breaking through, being ever more present in us and through us. I have tried to describe this new way before, as relational, process-oriented, immanent, dialogical, democratic, pluralistic…. But it is elusive, like the Dao:Continue reading “Glimmers: The Call of a New Way”

Nihilism and the Threshold We Must Cross

Nihilism hangs in the air like a bad fog. While it is not a new phenomenon historically speaking, the pervasiveness of nihilism in American life today is truly ominous – and may be accelerating.  “Nihilism” is a basic and complex term that stands as one of the central dynamics of our unthinkably complex times. HenceContinue reading “Nihilism and the Threshold We Must Cross”

Return to Life

With “whack-a-mole” as a tempting metaphor for this moment, we experience endless crises. In the onslaught, some of our fellow citizens drive themselves to exhaustion and dysfunction in the effort to get control, attempting to whack all moles that pop their heads up. Others turn away in the post-apocalyptic conclusion that the game is unwinnableContinue reading “Return to Life”

Ode to the Humanities

In a recent conversation with my granddaughter, she told me she’s reading Gary Chapman, The Five Languages of Love. I’m struck by the sense that she’s learning how to be human, learning the range of human response to life, including some values that lead in a good direction. In the “wasteland” of modern society, traditionalContinue reading “Ode to the Humanities”

Regard: An Ode to Democracy

Amid the general social dissolution, man [sic] is thrust back into dependence upon those most primitive bonds out of which alone a new and trustworthy objectivity can be constructed. – Karl Jaspers, 1957, p. 26 I.What it comes down to, if we want to have anything like a democracy, is regard for the person (includingContinue reading “Regard: An Ode to Democracy”

Democratic Awakening: A Meditation on Amor Mundi

In the absence of Trump’s never-ending acting out – culminating in the insurrection of Jan 6, Trumpians are left with the fear, anger, and a sense of being replaced. Trump had previously protected his followers from these feelings through his acting them out day after day of what must be the most bizarre presidency. ButContinue reading “Democratic Awakening: A Meditation on Amor Mundi”