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Philosophy and Life

Recent writing and occasional thoughts on assorted matters.

  • Love in a Time of Crisis because Crises are How Love Shows Up May 25, 2022- An MP3 version of this talk is at my podcast, Talks and Thoughts, available via podcast feeds. There is a minimal kind of love which brings consolation in crises. But there is also a maximal kind of love which appears in times of crisis. Indeed, can only be known through crises. This is worth considering because love is often use…
  • William Blake and the Psychedelic Renaissance. Seven facets of cultural transformation May 24, 2022- Am MP3 version of this talk is at my podcast, Thoughts and Talks, available via podcast feeds. William Blake is famous for his phrase "cleansing the doors of perception". But he has much, much more to offer the renewed interest in psychedelics underway in our times. He responds to the need for a social and spiritual setting, widely recognised by…
  • The Road of Excess Leads to the Palace of Wisdom. William Blake on desire, attention and wanting it all May 21, 2022- An MP3 version of the talk is on my Thoughts and Talks podcast, available via your podcast feed. "More! More! is the cry of a mistaken soul, less than All cannot satisfy Man," wrote William Blake. How we might participate in the All, without consuming more and more, can serve as a summary of Blake's vision and vocation. All he…
  • Understanding the Hollywood Medium. Thoughts on Life After Death with Tyler Henry May 16, 2022- An MP3 version of the talk can be found on my podcast, Talks and Thoughts, available via podcast feeds. The reality TV star, Tyler Henry, became famous with his celebrity readings. His new Netflix series, Life After Death, is a chance to consider what he does in a different light. My sense is he is one of the relatively rare…
  • William Blake and learning from Covid. On dying before you die May 8, 2022- This essay is published by Beshara Magazine. The pandemic is said to have exposed modern society to its vulnerabilities. Nowhere is this exposure clearer than in relation to death. Covid has revealed that, nowadays, most people have inadequate ways of relating to this fact of life. The weakness is doubly striking as wisdom and religious traditions insist that death is…
  • Defending the Spiritual Commons. A short talk at Idler Drinks May 7, 2022- An MP3 version of this talk is at my podcast, Talks and Thoughts, available on your podcast feed. The land commons are the shared material resources that nobody in particular might own, and everyone might have, though they are routinely taken from us. Land and forests, water and minerals. The spiritual commons are the being of life itself that nobody…
  • Wrestling with Christianity. A Medicine Path podcast conversation with Brian James & Mark Vernon May 4, 2022- An MP3 of this conversation can be found at my Talks and Thoughts podcast available via your podcast feed. A conversation on wrestling with Christianity - or perhaps more accurately, the Christianities that swirl around the figure of Jesus - at the Medicine Path podcast, #87, with Brian James. For more on Brian - http://medicinepathpodcast.com, http://brianjames.ca For more on Owen…
  • Dante on Idealism. Or Dante in dialogue with Bernardo Kastrup and others May 1, 2022- An audio version of this talk can be found in my podcast Dante's Divine Comedy available via podcast feeds. This is a contribution to recent dialogues on idealism between Bernardo Kastrup, John Vervaeke, Matt Segall, Philip Goff and others, including myself. I draw particularly on: - Dante's account and analysis of his journey to the heart of consciousness in all…
  • The Spiritual Path of the Soul – a Stoic conversation with The Walled Garden Apr 28, 2022- The conversation as audio is on my podcast, Talks and Thoughts, available on podcast feeds. Modern Stoicism is more diverse than I knew, I learnt when I spoke with Simon Drew, Kai Whiting and Sharon Lebell. In particular, the divine element in ancient Stoicism, which was central, has not been discarded by everyone involved in the recent Stoic revival. In…
  • Forging Golgonooza. William Blake on how to do politics & religion Apr 24, 2022- Politics and religion is a question of our times. The role of the church and Christianity is contested in both Russia and the liberal West. William Blake was aware of the failure of politics in his time, recognising it wasn't ultimately a failure of leadership or practical solutions but of vision. What politics is for? What role do religious institutions…

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