Category Archives: Mysticism

The Other Culture War

The Other Culture War People live and die by ideas.  That’s not the only thing we live and die by, but ideas are big in the lives of all of us.  For the last 100 years or so, trend-setting thinkers … Continue reading

Posted in Absurdism, Academe, Action, Afterlife, Alienation, Anthropology, Art, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, bad faith, Biblical God, bureaucracy, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Courage, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, Erotic Life, Eternity, Ethics, Evil, Existentialism, exploitation, Faith, Fashion, Female Power, Femininity, Feminism, Freedom, Gender Balance, glitterati, Guilt and Innocence, hegemony, Heroes, hidden God, hierarchy, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Idolatry, Immorality, Immortality, Institutional Power, life and death struggle, Literature, Love, Male Power, Masculinity, Mind Control, Modern Women, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, Mortality, Mysticism, Ontology, Oppression, Past and Future, Phenomenology of Mind, Philosophy, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, promissory notes, Propaganda, Psychology, public facade, Public Intellectual, Reading, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, Romantic Love, science, scientism, secular, Seduction, self-deception, seventeeth century, Sex Appeal, Sexuality, social climbing, social construction, Social Conventions, social ranking, Sociobiology, spiritual not religious, Spirituality, status, status of women, Suffering, The Examined Life, The Problematic of Men, The Problematic of Woman, the profane, the sacred, Theism, Theology, Time, twentieth century, twenty-first century, Utopia, victimhood, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Confessions

Confessions Last night I was trying to cope with a digestive disaster and wondering what on earth could have caused it, since it didn’t seem to have the usual obvious connection with food.  Two explanations presented themselves. First, a possible … Continue reading

Posted in "Absolute Freedom and Terror", Absurdism, Academe, Action, Alienation, American Politics, Anthropology, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, bad faith, Biblical God, bigotry, books, Cities, Class, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Courage, cults, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, eighteenth century, Erotic Life, Eternity, Ethics, Evil, Existentialism, exploitation, Faith, Fashion, Female Power, Femininity, Feminism, Freedom, Gender Balance, glitterati, Gnosticism, Guilt and Innocence, Health, hegemony, Heroes, hidden God, hierarchy, History, history of ideas, idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Idolatry, Immorality, Immortality, Institutional Power, Jews, Judaism, Law, life and death struggle, Literature, Love, Male Power, Memoir, memory, Messianic Age, Mind Control, Modern Women, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, Mortality, Mysticism, Ontology, Oppression, pacifism, Past and Future, Phenomenology of Mind, Philosophy, Political Movements, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, Propaganda, Psychology, public facade, Public Intellectual, Race, radicalism, Reading, relationships, Religion, Roles, Romantic Love, Seduction, self-deception, Sex Appeal, Sexuality, social climbing, social construction, Social Conventions, social ranking, spiritual journey, spiritual not religious, Spirituality, status, status of women, Suffering, Terror, The Examined Life, The Problematic of Men, The Problematic of Woman, the profane, the sacred, Theism, Theology, Time, twentieth century, twenty-first century, Utopia, victimhood, victims, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Right Way to Act

The Right Way to Act An essay of mine with that title, excerpted from my Good Look at Evil, is now posted on academia.edu.  It’s on the question of how to conduct oneself during one’s Holocaust.  The title is meant … Continue reading

Posted in "Absolute Freedom and Terror", Absurdism, Academe, Action, Afterlife, Alienation, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, bad faith, Biblical God, bigotry, books, Christianity, Cities, Class, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Courage, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, eighteenth century, Erotic Life, Eternity, Ethics, Evil, Existentialism, exploitation, Faith, Freedom, Friendship, Guilt and Innocence, Hegel, hegemony, Heroes, hidden God, hierarchy, History, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Idolatry, Immorality, Immortality, Institutional Power, Jews, Judaism, Law, Legal Responsibility, life and death struggle, Literature, Love, Martyrdom, master/slave relation, Memoir, memory, Mind Control, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, Mortality, Mysticism, Ontology, Oppression, Past and Future, politics of ideas, Power, presence, Propaganda, Psychology, public facade, Public Intellectual, Race, Reading, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, secular, self-deception, Social Conventions, social ranking, spiritual journey, spiritual not religious, Spirituality, status, Suffering, Terror, The Examined Life, The Problematic of Men, The Problematic of Woman, the profane, the sacred, Theism, Theology, Time, twentieth century, victimhood, victims, Violence, War, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How Did I Get To Be This Happy?

How Did I Get To Be This Happy? If I put this question to an existentialist, the answer would be: “Because you’re inauthentic.  You walk around in bad faith.”  The human situation can be deemed absurd (if you’re feeling French) … Continue reading

Posted in "Absolute Freedom and Terror", Absurdism, Academe, Action, Afterlife, Alienation, American Politics, Anthropology, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, bad faith, beauty, Biblical God, books, Childhood, Chivalry, Christianity, Cities, Class, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Cool, Courage, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, eighteenth century, Erotic Life, Eternity, Ethics, Evil, Existentialism, exploitation, Faith, Fashion, Female Power, Femininity, Feminism, Freedom, Friendship, Gender Balance, glitterati, Gnosticism, Guilt and Innocence, Heroes, hidden God, hierarchy, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Idolatry, Immorality, Institutional Power, Jews, Judaism, Legal Responsibility, life and death struggle, Literature, Love, Male Power, Martyrdom, Masculinity, master/slave relation, Memoir, memory, Mind Control, Modern Women, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, Mortality, Mysticism, non-violence, novels, Ontology, Oppression, Past and Future, Peace, Philosophy, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, Propaganda, Psychology, Public Intellectual, Reading, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, secular, Seduction, self-deception, social construction, social ranking, spiritual journey, spiritual not religious, Spirituality, status, status of women, Suffering, The Examined Life, The Problematic of Men, The Problematic of Woman, the profane, the sacred, Theism, Theology, Time, twentieth century, twenty-first century, victimhood, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Baal Shem Tov

The Baal Shem Tov The Baal Shem Tov (Master of the Good Name) is the preeminent Hassidic master, the 18th-century founder (1700-1760) and prototype of any follower who practices in that tradition.  His very presence was said to be a … Continue reading

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The Fallacy of Misplaced Vagueness

The Fallacy of Misplaced Vagueness The philosopher Alfred North Whitehead spotlighted a previously unrecognized mistake in reasoning: “the fallacy of misplaced concreteness.”  It happens when we confuse an abstract concept for something concrete. Medieval knights set out in quest of … Continue reading

Posted in Absurdism, Academe, Action, Alienation, Autonomy, books, Chivalry, Christianity, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Cultural Politics, Culture, dialectic, eighteenth century, Eternity, Faith, Fashion, hegemony, hierarchy, History, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Idolatry, Institutional Power, Law, Literature, Love, Medieval, memory, Mind Control, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, Mysticism, Ontology, Past and Future, Philosophy, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, promissory notes, Psychology, public facade, Public Intellectual, Reading, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, science, scientism, secular, seventeeth century, social construction, Social Conventions, social ranking, spiritual journey, spiritual not religious, Spirituality, status, The Examined Life, The Problematic of Men, The Problematic of Woman, the profane, the sacred, Theology, Time, twentieth century, twenty-first century, Utopia, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How to Be Modern

How to Be Modern I’ve never understood why people wanted to be modern in the first place.  Okay, the dentistry is an improvement.  I’ll give you that. On the other hand, Victorian people (as in the novels of Dickens) seemed … Continue reading

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What’s with Wittgenstein?

What’s with Wittgenstein? Ludwig Wittgenstein seems still to bestride the narrow straits of world thought like a colossus, reflections of him flickering over cultural regions far afield from his own. By lamplight, I’ve been spending my recent weeks with the … Continue reading

Posted in Absurdism, Academe, Action, Alienation, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, books, Cities, Class, Contemplation, Contradictions, Cool, Courage, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, Erotic Life, Eternity, Ethics, Evil, Existentialism, exploitation, Faith, Fashion, Freedom, Friendship, glitterati, Gnosticism, Guilt and Innocence, hegemony, Heroes, hidden God, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Idolatry, Institutional Power, Jews, Law, Legal Responsibility, Male Power, Masculinity, memory, Mind Control, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, Mysticism, Ontology, Oppression, Past and Future, Philosophy, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, promissory notes, Psychology, public facade, Public Intellectual, radicalism, Reading, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, scientism, secular, Seduction, self-deception, Sexuality, social construction, Social Conventions, social ranking, spiritual journey, spiritual not religious, Spirituality, status, Suffering, The Examined Life, The Problematic of Men, The Problematic of Woman, the profane, the sacred, Theology, Time, twentieth century, twenty-first century, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Father’s Continuing Funerary Cortege

My Father’s Continuing Funerary Cortege A country song comes to mind as I try to picture what reading the complete extant papers of my father has been like for me during these past weeks.  There’s a long line of mourners … Continue reading

Posted in "Absolute Freedom and Terror", Absurdism, Academe, Action, Afterlife, Alienation, Anthropology, Art, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, Biblical God, books, bureaucracy, Childhood, Chivalry, Christianity, Cities, Class, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Cool, Courage, Courtship, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, Erotic Life, Eternity, Ethics, Evil, Existentialism, Faith, Fashion, Freedom, Friendship, Gender Balance, glitterati, Guilt and Innocence, hegemony, Heroes, hidden God, hierarchy, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Idolatry, Immorality, Immortality, Institutional Power, Jews, Judaism, Law, Legal Responsibility, life and death struggle, Literature, Love, Male Power, Masculinity, Memoir, memory, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, Mortality, Mysticism, Ontology, Oppression, Past and Future, Peace, Philosophy, Poetry, politics of ideas, Power, presence, promissory notes, Psychology, public facade, Public Intellectual, Reading, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, Romantic Love, secular, self-deception, social climbing, social construction, Social Conventions, social ranking, spiritual journey, spiritual not religious, Spirituality, status, Suffering, Terror, The Examined Life, The Problematic of Men, the profane, the sacred, Theism, Theology, Time, twentieth century, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

My Latest Teaching Anxiety Dream

My Latest Teaching Anxiety Dream Last night I had a variant of the dream that visits many teachers in the pre-dawn hours.  Short of taking a survey, I have yet to meet a teacher who’s never had this dream in … Continue reading

Posted in "Absolute Freedom and Terror", Absurdism, Academe, Action, Afterlife, Alienation, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, Biblical God, books, Childhood, Chivalry, Cities, Class, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Cool, Courage, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, Erotic Life, Eternity, Ethics, Evil, Existentialism, Faith, Fashion, Femininity, Feminism, Freedom, Friendship, Gender Balance, glitterati, Gnosticism, Guilt and Innocence, Health, hegemony, Heroes, hidden God, hierarchy, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Idolatry, Immorality, Immortality, Institutional Power, Jews, Judaism, Legal Responsibility, life and death struggle, Literature, Love, Masculinity, Memoir, memory, Mind Control, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, Mortality, motherhood, Mysticism, nineteenth-century, non-violence, novels, Ontology, Oppression, Past and Future, Peace, Philosophy, Poetry, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, promissory notes, Propaganda, Psychology, public facade, Public Intellectual, Reading, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, Romantic Love, scientism, secular, self-deception, social construction, Social Conventions, social ranking, spiritual journey, spiritual not religious, Spirituality, status, status of women, Suffering, Terror, The Examined Life, The Problematic of Men, The Problematic of Woman, the profane, the sacred, Theism, Theology, Time, twentieth century, twenty-first century, Utopia, victimhood, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment