On Being Blog

Parker J. Palmer Wednesday, July 9, 2014 - 05:26

Parker Palmer celebrates the act of finding clarity in one's life through the poetry of Mary Oliver and listening to the trees.

Mariah Helgeson Tuesday, July 8, 2014 - 09:00

Krista Tippett interviewed the poet and memoirist Maya Angelou just three weeks before her death. In an intimate phone conversation, she shares a final encouragement for today's young men and women.

Mariah Helgeson Tuesday, July 8, 2014 - 08:52

Former Black Panther party member Kathleen Cleaver on the third option. Beyond revolt and submission, there is another path, the path of self-realization.

Mariah Helgeson Tuesday, July 8, 2014 - 08:31

Civil rights veteran Julian Bond on the guardianship of W.E.B. Du Bois in the efforts to move beyond the color line in the twenty-first century.

Trent Gilliss Tuesday, July 8, 2014 - 06:03

With the dulcet tones of the Copenhagen Phil, commuters find a moment of unexpected musical joy in this flash mob scene. You will too.

Mariah Helgeson Monday, July 7, 2014 - 15:57

This unpublished list of books written by W.E.B. Du Bois in 1923 might be a list of favorites, or it might be a to-read list, or a list of recommendations for a friend. In any case, it's a window into the mind of a terrific writer, through the books he loved.

Ariana Tobin Monday, July 7, 2014 - 07:19

When a millennial woman hears about Buddhist teachings on overcoming anger through love, she decides to try out a meditation practice experiment on her own social media feeds.

Rick LaValley Sunday, July 6, 2014 - 07:45

A veteran outdoorsman finds comfort in the words of Ralph Waldo Emerson. For this self-described river rat, nature is the circumstance which dwarfs every other circumstance.

Mariah Helgeson Thursday, July 3, 2014 - 19:42

Inspired by Du Bois, Cory Booker reflects on the individual yearning of black men as essential to collective struggle. For him, the gift of his skin color is in allowing a better appreciation of the texture of humanity and a deeper ability to feel compassion.

Parker J. Palmer Wednesday, July 2, 2014 - 07:46

As many of us Americans approach the July 4th weekend, Parker Palmer proposes an Interdependence Day to remind us that "we're all in this together."

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Latest Interviews

July 24, 2014

Sculptural artist Dario Robleto is famous for spinning and shaping unconventional materials — from dinosaur fossils to pulverized vintage records, from swamp root to cramp bark. He joins words and objects in a way that distills meaning at once social, poetic, and scientific. He reveals how objects can become meditations on love, war, and healing.

July 17, 2014

Sixteen Muslims, in their own words, speak about the delights and gravity of Islam's holiest month. Through vivid memories and light-hearted musings, they reveal the richness of Ramadan — as a period of intimacy, and of parties; of getting up when the world is quiet for breakfast and prayers with one's family; of breaking the fast every day after nightfall in celebration and prayers with friends and strangers.

July 10, 2014

One of the most extraordinary minds of American and global history, W.E.B. Du Bois penned the famous line that "the problem of the 20th century is the problem of the color line." He is a formative voice for many of the people who gave us the Civil Rights Movement. But his passionate, poetic words speak to all of us navigating the ever-unfolding, unfinished business of civil rights. We bring Du Bois' life and ideas into relief for the 21st century — featuring one of the last interviews the great Maya Angelou gave before her death.

July 3, 2014

For the Fourth of July, a refreshing reality check about the long road of American democracy. We remember forgotten but fascinating, useful history as we contemplate how we might help young democracies on their own tumultuous paths now.

June 26, 2014

We tend to frame our cultural conversation about science and religion as a debate — two either/or ways of describing reality. With mathematician Jim Bradley and philosopher Michael Ruse, we trace a quieter evolution of science and religion in interplay — not a matter of competing answers, but of complementary questions with room for humanity, nuance, and humor.

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