Tag Archives: Nietzsche

What’s a Penis, and What’s It for? Thomas Aquinas vs. Ludwig Wittgenstein

What’s better: to see a thing as having both essential and accidental features, and placing it in a genus-species hierarchy (Thomas Aquinas’ view), or to drop hierarchy and essentialism in definition altogether, and just see a thing as sharing “family … Continue reading

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Between Gods And Animals, The Sweet Spot

From the vantage of the Greco-Roman pagans, because we’re neither gods nor exclusively animals, human beings are in a very, very sweet spot. Arguably the best spot. Think about it. The gods can make choices; they can fight and have … Continue reading

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Mean Rich

Are mean and rich synonyms? Maybe: __________ One thing I find interesting in this TED talk is that the research results (the wealthier you perceive yourself to be, the meaner you get) can be reversed with simple reminders that there … Continue reading

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Improvisation, Nude: The Emperors of Contemporary Art and Art Criticism Have No Clothes. Is that Okay?

Would somebody please, please, please save the art world from itself? Jed Perl, the great art critic, recently gave it his best shot, writing an Emperor-has-no-clothes piece for The New Republic: The cash registers are ringing and that’s the only … Continue reading

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Do Democracy, Mass Education, and Economic Prosperity Weaken God Belief?

Michael Shermer thinks so, and he has some data that supports him. Writing at Scientific American, here he is on democracy and mass education: One factor [in the decline of God belief internationally] is the dramatic spread of democracy around … Continue reading

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Glasses, Not Mirrors: Richard Rorty’s Whole Philosophy In 900 Words

I’m going to try to sum up the whole of Richard Rorty’s philosophy in just 900 words. Do you suppose I can do it? Here goes. The religionist, the scientist, and the ironist. There are three types of people in … Continue reading

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The Religion Tree: A Poem

THE RELIGION TREE I. The leaf doesn’t fall far from the tree, and we are all leaves on the same tree, and will take our leave from there. II. The yellow leaf signals fall, the green leaf, pride before the fall. … Continue reading

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Theorizing Desire

If you think about it, we respond to whatever arises into consciousness with desire, aversion, or neutrality. And the things that appear to consciousness are always in flux: they arise, they ripen, they decline from attention and disappear. Then others … Continue reading

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Nietzsche in a Nutshell

__________ Once you perceive that you are flung into a cosmos in which God is dead (or silent), and your ultimate questions are unlikely ever to be answered, it’s time to stop worrying about who or where you are really—what the truth is—and just, say, make lion-man totems … Continue reading

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Life Perspective from Three Vantages

First vantage. Astronaut Suni Williams on what it’s like to look down on Earth from space: When you’re flying in space some of the things down on Earth seem trivial. Things like politics leave your mind. […] For me, [most] news … Continue reading

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What’s Coming (A Prediction)

A century from now, were you and I to see it, I think we would exclaim, like Miranda in Shakespeare’s The Tempest, “O brave new world that has such men in it!” And I worry that those men will not be religious … Continue reading

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The Diligent Shall Rule

Or at least annoy. Focus and never give up.

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Buddha’s Take on Suffering vs. Nietzsche’s

If you think about it, we respond to whatever arises into consciousness with desire, aversion, or neutrality. And the things that appear to consciousness are always in flux: they arise, they ripen, they decline from attention and disappear. Then others … Continue reading

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The Bible Verse Reinhold Niebuhr Chose As Most Essential

If but one Bible verse survived after a global cataclysm, what verse would you hope got preserved? The famous theologian Reinhold Niebuhr was asked this question in 1954 of a magazine editor, and here was his response: The passage of … Continue reading

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The Ultimate Revenge Fantasy Movie

One of the ironies here is that this is exactly how a lot of Christian fundamentalists imagine Jesus actually returning (a lamb the first time, a lion the second). Another irony is that one could never even make such a … Continue reading

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Stalin and Mao, BFF

Stalin and Mao on currency, 1950: __________ I post the above currency image because I’ve been thinking about how images function to make the individual viewer feel like Dorothy before the Wizard of Oz (small and weak before The Great … Continue reading

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What Is This Life?

According to a recent science article at the Huffington Post, Sara Walker, an astrobiologist at Arizona State University, along with some of her colleagues, has arrived at a fresh definition of life as seen through the prism of information processing: Walker’s team … Continue reading

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An Infinity of Doppelgängers: The Jaw Dropping NYT Science News Story You May Have Missed

The most nightmarish news bringing in 2013 isn’t coming from Iran or the Republican Party, but physicists and cosmologists: you–yes, you–may have a twin, a doppelgänger. Seriously. Lots and lots and lots of them. As may all of us. Written by science … Continue reading

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Did God Die In The Holocaust?

In the 1930s and 40s, a great many Jews in Europe would have exercised their free will in the direction of Adolf Hitler’s head by putting a bullet in it, but God (if He exists) did not give a single Jew … Continue reading

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Have You Lived Today?

If so, I suppose that would mean that you: did something novel as opposed to habitual; slowed down and noticed things; thought; loved; valued; took some risks; and either identified with Dionysus or channeled with discipline your Dionysian energies into … Continue reading

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