Suicide: A Symptom of Global Spiritual Malaise?

Recently my cousin wrote a brave letter to her local newspaper in response to two suicides that affected her children. Her message¬†picked up a lot of attention because it addresses mental health issues with great open-heartedness and honesty. I felt … Continue reading

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The Soft Animal of the Body

Let the soft animal of your body love what it loves. — Mary Oliver Bessel van der Kolk’s 2014 book, The Body Keeps the Score, reminds me of how strongly both my physical and mental condition have been shaped by … Continue reading

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Could Everything ‘They’ Tell Us Be Wrong?

Why should I let others define what’s important for my life? Do they know better? Or if they know better, does what they know apply to me? More and more, I’m thinking not. I’m thinking that what society values is … Continue reading

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What? Success Doesn’t Ensure Happiness?

The self-inflicted death of Robin Williams is pushing my buttons. And while I’ve read many commentaries, I have yet to come across one that speaks to the issue I find most affecting, so I feel prompted to chime in. My … Continue reading

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Growing Beyond Our Limits

Humanity builds its monuments at the expense of the natural world. Our cities suck resources from the countryside. Our pleasures come strip-mined from the earth, or pumped out with aid of poisons injected underground. ¬†We engineer plants that generate their … Continue reading

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Feeling Small, Again

Has it really been ten days since my last entry? As has happened before, my enthusiasm for a writing project waned suddenly. It’s part of a larger pattern of repetitive mood swings, each of which begins as inflated confidence only … Continue reading

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Love Thy Enemy

Is ‘love’ a noun or a verb? This isn’t a grammatical question, since the word can function as both. But in personal experience, does love feel like a noun, a substance given, or like a verb, an act performed? If … Continue reading

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Letter from the Brink of Sanity

How to tell a story that has no beginning and no end? A tale that was ongoing before you were born and continues to this day? Choose an episode that pressed your first footprints on some new path. Like the … Continue reading

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Freedom’s Just Another Word

Passionate, self-destructive women have always interested me. As a young man I felt drawn to the poetry of Anne Sexton. Even earlier, as a teenager, I felt passionate about the music of (the already deceased) Janis Joplin. This attraction likely … Continue reading

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Dying to Stay Alive

Standing in the morgue, looking down at the chill steel slab, I see my own face. It looks exactly like me, the way my sister’s looked exactly like her when I viewed her body eighteen months ago. Exactly the same, … Continue reading

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