On Being Blog

Monday, August 17, 2009 - 16:19

A week-long retreat to rural Wisconsin takes us to Frank Lloyd Wright’s summer home Taliesin, and Deer Park Buddhist Center for a meditation on healing and the space we inhabit.

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Saturday, August 15, 2009 - 09:27

Krista reflects on her Irish respite and the words of John O'Donohue on beauty as "a kind of homecoming…"

Thursday, August 13, 2009 - 12:59

Our SoundSeen slideshow of James Prosek's paintings of birds and fish, coupled with his words about the myth of order.

Thursday, August 13, 2009 - 04:49

Overwhelmed by Books

Whew! It’s hard to keep up with all the books that get sent to us for consideration. The table in our office fills up quickly each week, and since our territory is “religion, meaning, ethics, and ideas” we get a little bit of everything. Some are good fits, others are too abstract; some come with thoughtful pitches about why the author would be a good guest for us, others have no relevance and I assume come just because we got on some publisher’s mass distribution list.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009 - 07:19

As we focus increasingly on ourselves, who do we leave behind, abandon? Abraham Joshua Heschel's prescient words on aging and vanity from his essay "To Grow in Wisdom."

Friday, August 7, 2009 - 04:44

Visualizing responses to a Physics World survey on religion and science.

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Sunday, August 2, 2009 - 04:23

The story of a woman whose son was murdered, and her struggle to end the cycle of violence in north Minneapolis.

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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.