On Being Blog

Sunday, April 20, 2008 - 10:31

A stirring set of questions from the Sephardic seder tradition creates a new space for a father's reflection on Passover.

Friday, April 18, 2008 - 17:00

We’ve been asked to redo our staff bios on our About Staff page to make them more, well, human and quirky. Writing your own bio is a very odd experience. You refer to yourself in the third person, possibly like something Napoleon might do. We (and I do mean the royal “we”) hope to get those brushed up over the next few days and up online.


Wednesday, April 16, 2008 - 07:05

Editor’s note: Our parent organization, American Public Media (APM), is a large and diverse organization. Maria is the manager of software development for the company. She’s a fan of SOF who travels extensively and is planning an introspective journey to myriad spiritual sites around the world. We invited her to contribute to SOF Observed on occasion and reflect as she listens to Krista’s interviews and works with us on upcoming projects.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008 - 18:03

Over the past week I have been travelling. I must make a choice about my education, and I have been visiting the schools I am considering attending, asking questions of their students, staff, and faculty.

People who study religion are often full of questions.  So at The Divinity School of the University of Chicago someone raised the following: “What resources do you have for frustrated Catholic women?”  There turned out to be a bevy of enthusiastic resources: a nun, a professor, three students, and an administrator each spoke up, excited at the chance to start a discussion about the role of women in the Catholic Church.  One Episcopal male student shouted, “You should convert!”  The nun described a woman who had carved a church leadership position for herself without being ordained.  The professor was still searching for an answer herself.

Friday, April 11, 2008 - 16:42

CNN is broadcasting a presidential candidate forum on faith issues this Sunday, April 13, at 8:00pm ET that includes both Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama (as of this post, John McCain had not accepted the invitation to participate).  I hate to admit it, but I think I’m not alone in acknowledging that my attention to this year’s presidential election ebbs and flows as the long months of campaigning continue.  But I will tune in this weekend with hopes of hearing a substantive dialogue on ”pressing moral issues that are bridging ideological divides now more than ever, including poverty, global AIDS, climate change and human rights.”


Wednesday, April 9, 2008 - 10:57
Friday, April 4, 2008 - 23:59
Friday, April 4, 2008 - 12:59

If you've had a long day and are looking for a moment of reflection, watch Carolina LaBranche's lovely two-minute homage to her mother.

Thursday, April 3, 2008 - 13:48
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Wednesday, April 2, 2008 - 14:11

We won a Peabody for this show! Read all about it here.

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Latest Interviews

April 17, 2014

"The soul is contained in the voice."

StoryCorps founder David Isay and Krista Tippett have an intimate conversation about their shared love of listening — and the importance of creating spaces to tell our stories to each other. For him, the spaces where two people ask the questions they’ve always wanted to ask of each other are sacred. Listening, he’s learned, is an act of love. Eliciting and capturing our stories is a way of insisting that every life matters.

April 10, 2014

With a master of midrash as our guide, we walk through the Exodus story at the heart of Passover. It's not the simple narrative you've watched at the movies or learned in Sunday school. Neither Moses or Pharaoh, nor the oppressed Israelites or even God, are as they seem. As Avivah Zornberg reveals, Exodus is a cargo of hidden stories — telling the messy, strange, redemptive truth of us as we are, and life as it is.

April 3, 2014

An astrophysicist who studies the shape of the universe, Janna Levin has also explored her science by writing a novel about two pivotal 20th-century mathematicians, Kurt Gödel and Alan Turing. Both men pushed at boundaries where mathematics presses on grand questions of meaning and purpose. Such questions, she says, help create the technologies that are now changing our sense of what it means to be human.

March 27, 2014

"Your staying alive means so much more than you really know or that anyone is aware of at this moment."

Philosopher, historian, and poet Jennifer Michael Hecht has traced how Western civilization has at times demonized those who commit suicide, at times celebrated it as a moral freedom. She proposes a reframed cultural conversation, based not on morality or rights but on our essential need for each other.

March 20, 2014

"There's no question about the reality of evil, of injustice, of suffering, but at the center of this existence is a heart beating with love."

South African Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu on how his understanding of God and humanity has unfolded through the history he's lived and shaped.