How can we live as a species, knowing now the temptation to righteous power will always exist even in (and maybe especially in) the best of us? And how do we let all that not get in the way of us getting very real boots off our very real necks?
Something that disturbs us can be profound, but that does not mean disturbance is profundity, or a certain route to same.
I'm not against the idea of stepping to different drummers, but how the word "nonconformity" has had all the meaning tortured out of it by thoughtless use.
On the absolute primacy of the present moment (part 6,312).
"I keep thinking," my friend said, "that if only I'd done more, we wouldn't be in this mess we're in now." Were they right?
For an artist, worldview is all.
Barrows Dunham's 1947 work of popular philosophy deserves the widest possible audience in 2020.
"How come it is easier for us to imagine the end of the world than a modest change in our economic order?" Let me take a crack at this, including how it relates to SF.
On Sir Popper's beautiful mind as an antidote for this terrible moment.
"The universe doesn't care about our feelings" isn't an excuse to be mean. No condition of life is an excuse.
On those who believe in incremental solutions -- progressive and conservative alike -- and those who believe in burning the whole house down and starting over.
Stories aren't about happy or sad endings. They're about making sense of what happens.
There's no sense in delaying life because things aren't quite right yet. (A redux.)
On Zen as the "do-nothing" philosophy (which it isn't).
"...what we call Man’s power over Nature turns out to be a power exercised by some men over other men with Nature as its instrument."
"... from where I sit, freedom isn't choice. Freedom is agency. Indeed, choice - by limiting agency - is often the opposite of freedom."
Instead of attacking them head-on.
Zen as nonintellectual, rather than anti-intellectual. But also non-passive.
On the difference between foxes and hedgehogs.
"...while surely there will be a time to rest, it is not now."
"moral action is also, inevitably, practical action, and immoral action is inevitably impractical..."
Kevin Drum dropped an aphorism worth repeating: "When you write, pretend you’re writing for people you respect."
"Beginner's mind" is not something we can impose on others.
What did Bertrand Russell mean when he said, "Do not feel absolutely certain of anything"?
"The other, of course, involves orcs."