Category Archives: secular

As If We Were Free

As If We Were Free We are just back from the pleasant French city of Montreal in Canada, where Jerry and I gave papers and attended the presentations of others at the meetings of the Eric Voegelin Society, a group … Continue reading

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Putting Order Into History

Putting Order Into History Aviva Zornberg has written another of her inspired books about the Bible, this one suggestively titled, The Beginning of Desire: Reflections on Genesis.   Why read the Bible?  Isn’t it a just collection of stories that … Continue reading

Posted in "Absolute Freedom and Terror", Absurdism, Academe, Action, Afterlife, Alienation, American Politics, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, bad faith, Bible, Biblical God, bigotry, books, Childhood, Cities, Class, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Cool, Courage, cults, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, Erotic Life, Eternity, Ethics, Evil, Existentialism, exploitation, Faith, Fashion, Female Power, Femininity, Feminism, Freedom, Friendship, Gender Balance, glitterati, Guilt and Innocence, Hegel, hegemony, Heroes, hidden God, hierarchy, History, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Idolatry, Immorality, Immortality, Institutional Power, Jews, Law, Legal Responsibility, life and death struggle, Literature, Love, Male Power, Masculinity, memory, Mind Control, Modern Women, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, Mortality, motherhood, Ontology, Oppression, Past and Future, Peace, Phenomenology of Mind, Philosophy, Political, Political Movements, politics, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, Propaganda, Psychology, public facade, Public Intellectual, radicalism, Reading, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, secular, Seduction, self-deception, Sex Appeal, 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, TV, twentieth century, twenty-first century, victimhood, victims, Violence, War, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Rachel at the Well

Rachel at the Well Some years ago, Jerry and I had dinner in Washington D.C. with a learned and accomplished professorial couple who’d been married and deeply in love for their whole blessed lifetime.  The conversation turned to a topic … Continue reading

Posted in Absurdism, Academe, Action, Alienation, Anthropology, Art, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, bad faith, beauty, Bible, Biblical God, bigotry, books, Chivalry, Cities, Class, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Cool, Courage, Courtship, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, Erotic Life, Eternity, Ethics, Evil, Existentialism, exploitation, Faith, Fashion, Female Power, Femininity, Feminism, Films, Freedom, Friendship, Gender Balance, glitterati, Gnosticism, Guilt and Innocence, Health, hegemony, Heroes, hidden God, hierarchy, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Immorality, Immortality, Jews, Judaism, Legal Responsibility, life and death struggle, Literature, Love, Male Power, Masculinity, master, Mind Control, Modern Women, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, motherhood, Mysticism, nineteenth-century, novels, Ontology, Past and Future, Peace, Philosophy, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, Propaganda, Psychology, public facade, Public Intellectual, Reading, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, Romance, Romantic Love, secular, 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, victimhood, victims, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

No Place Like Home

No Place Like Home My name Abigail means in Hebrew “father’s joy.”  Which tells us that, at birth, I’d already received my assignment. Since my father was considered, by a number of his classmates in Columbia University’s stellar class of … Continue reading

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Desire and Defamation

Desire and Defamation Defamation tends to obliterate the erotic appeal of the person being defamed.  That’s one reason it’s so infuriatingly irreparable.  It makes the victim seem undesirable.  We are social animals.  We live by each other’s smiles and frowns. … Continue reading

Posted in "Absolute Freedom and Terror", Absurdism, Academe, Action, Alienation, American Politics, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, bad faith, beauty, Biblical God, bigotry, book reviews, books, bureaucracy, Class, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Cool, Courage, Courtship, cults, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, Erotic Life, Eternity, Ethics, Evil, Existentialism, exploitation, Faith, Fashion, Female Power, Femininity, Feminism, Freedom, Friendship, Gender Balance, glitterati, Gnosticism, Guilt and Innocence, Health, hegemony, Heroes, hidden God, hierarchy, History, history of ideas, ID, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Idolatry, Immorality, Institutional Power, Jews, Journalism, Judaism, Legal Responsibility, life and death struggle, Love, Martyrdom, Masculinity, Medieval, memory, Mind Control, Modern Women, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, Mortality, motherhood, non-violence, Ontology, Oppression, Past and Future, Peace, Phenomenology of Mind, Philosophy, Political Movements, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, Propaganda, Psychology, public facade, Public Intellectual, radicalism, Reading, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, Romantic Love, secular, Seduction, self-deception, Sex Appeal, social climbing, social construction, Social Conventions, social ranking, Sociobiology, spiritual journey, spiritual not religious, Spirituality, status, status of women, Suffering, Terror, terrorism, 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, Violence, War, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

What’s Unconscious?

What’s Unconscious? In recent columns, I’ve written about the mysterious effects of mind on body and their unpredictable intertwinings.   One reader has left Comments on these columns, twice urging me to read John E. Sarno’s book, The Divided Mind: … Continue reading

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My Mind Is Not My Brain

My Mind Is Not My Brain How much hangs on that denial – or on its contradictory, that my mind is my brain!  If our minds are our brains, as I once thought, and as our educated contemporaries mostly still … Continue reading

Posted in Absurdism, Academe, Action, Afterlife, Alienation, Anthropology, Art, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, bad faith, beauty, Biblical God, books, bureaucracy, Christianity, Class, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Cool, Courage, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, Erotic Life, Eternity, Ethics, Evil, Existentialism, exploitation, Faith, Fashion, Freedom, Friendship, Gender Balance, glitterati, Gnosticism, Guilt and Innocence, Health, hegemony, hidden God, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Ideology, Immortality, Institutional Power, Judaism, Legal Responsibility, life and death struggle, Literature, Love, Masculinity, Medieval, memory, Mind Control, Modern Women, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, Mortality, motherhood, Ontology, Past and Future, Philosophy, Poetry, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, Psychology, public facade, Public Intellectual, Reading, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, Romance, Romantic Love, science, scientism, secular, self-deception, Sex Appeal, Sexuality, social construction, Social Conventions, 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, Utopia, victimhood, victims, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Does God Play Favorites?

Does God Play Favorites? I don’t enjoy competition.  By that, I’m not intending to reject anyone’s marketplace of skills or services.  It’s just my sincere personal confession.   For example, I was a natural athlete as a child.  But later, … Continue reading

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In Quest of Healing

We are just back from one of our weeks in California, in quest of healing for my neuropathy.  As I’ve said here before, the experimental treatment on offer at Loma Linda’s neuropathy clinic sees the illness as the result of … Continue reading

Posted in Absurdism, Academe, Action, Afterlife, Alienation, Art of Living, Autonomy, books, Cities, conformism, Contemplation, Contradictions, Cool, Courage, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, Erotic Life, Ethics, Existentialism, exploitation, Faith, Fashion, Female Power, Feminism, Freedom, Friendship, Gender Balance, Guilt and Innocence, Health, Heroes, hidden God, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Jews, Judaism, life and death struggle, Male Power, Masculinity, memory, Modern Women, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, morality, Mortality, Oppression, Past and Future, Philosophy, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, Propaganda, Psychology, Public Intellectual, Reductionism, relationships, Religion, Roles, science, scientism, secular, Seduction, self-deception, Sex Appeal, social construction, Social Conventions, social ranking, spiritual journey, Spirituality, status, status of women, Suffering, The Examined Life, The Problematic of Men, The Problematic of Woman, Theology, twentieth century, twenty-first century, victimhood, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

The Kiss of God

The Kiss of God Nowadays, on Wednesday evenings, I drive to the local Chabad, when I can manage it, to study the Parshah (section from the Pentateuch being read during that week by Jews worldwide).  Their building is still under … Continue reading

Posted in Absurdism, Academe, Action, Afterlife, Art, Art of Living, Atheism, Autonomy, Bible, Biblical God, books, Cities, Class, conformism, Contemplation, Courage, Cultural Politics, Culture, Desire, dialectic, Eternity, Ethics, Faith, Fashion, Freedom, Friendship, Gender Balance, glitterati, Guilt and Innocence, Health, Heroes, hidden God, hierarchy, History, history of ideas, Idealism, Ideality, Identity, Idolatry, Institutional Power, Jews, Judaism, Law, Legal Responsibility, life and death struggle, Literature, Love, Masculinity, memory, Messianic Age, Modern Women, Modernism, Moral action, Moral evaluation, Moral psychology, Mysticism, nineteenth-century, Ontology, Oppression, Past and Future, Peace, Poetry, Political Movements, politics of ideas, post modernism, Power, presence, promissory notes, Psychology, Public Intellectual, radicalism, Reading, Reductionism, Religion, Roles, secular, 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, Utopia, Work, Writing, Zeitgeist | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments