I had forgotten

Death meditating, lotus position

For several months I have felt as if I were slipping back into clinical depression again.

The outward signs are here. The fogged thinking, lack of enthusiasm, fussiness, longing to sleep. The undertone of despair. All too generalized to ascribe to any one or cluster of causes.

Yet somehow the subtle bodily symptoms I’ve come to recognize over the decades are not really present. As a scientist in the medieval sense—someone who seeks to know—I’ve looked inwardly for years at

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The alabaster jar

Many of us are chronically distressed by the suffering we see around us. It confronts us in the 24/7 news cycle, in social media, in what we pass on the street every day. We live with a longing to be rid of the pain and guilt that we experience in witnessing all of this suffering.

That longing drives us to cast about for things to do that would “fix the problem.” We try and we urge others to try political

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