From a perennial favorite on busyness to hard conversations to help us understand each other — a round-up of the most-read blog posts of the past year.
A reflection on reimagining American identity, which may require us to break down our most basic assumptions about the society we live in in uncomfortable ways.
Compassion is a virtue, but do we direct it inward as much as outward? Parker Palmer gleans wisdom from Mary Oliver on mending ourselves so that we might be better companions to loved ones in need.
How can we be more present to daily joys? What does it look like to engage with each other in our fullest capacity? Questions and meditations on community and identity from voices on our radar.
A true friendship doesn't only bring support and joy, but also challenges us to grow. Omid Safi reflects on the importance of nurturing relationships that acknowledge our imperfections, and nourish the best in us.
After his childhood friend enlists in the IDF, a journalist of Lebanese heritage reflects on the journey of understanding he's traveled with someone on the "other side" of the conflict.
From Game of Thrones to a biological time capsule in Norway, fascinating reads on what's happening in our collective culture with wise meditations on mutual trust in our individual power to rise and thrive.
A mentor-mentee relationship, like any good one, requires commitment, openness, and honesty. Courtney Martin gives counsel on building relationships of mutual joy and learning with those in our lives whom we admire.
The catharsis of living up to challenge, in all walks of life — essays on powering through the hardest miles in a marathon to facing a crowd of unfamiliar strangers, to reckoning with one's best and worst selves while reflecting in the solitude of the woods.
The most romantic relationships just may be our platonic friendships. But, as we age, it gets more difficult to establish new friendships with those of the same sex. Our columnist celebrates the inimitable joy of platonic courtship and female attachment.
Unexpected relationships can lead to deep and lasting learning and growth.
An unexpected exchange catalyzes a conversation about the essential truths of aphorisms and paring the excess without violating the mystery.
In response to Courtney Martin's letter, Parker Palmer corresponds with his dear friend about the uncertainty of life. A contemplation on the value of being vulnerable and open to supportive friends.
What person or story comes to mind when you think of middle school? An open invitation to reflect and respond about your experience of early adolescence, in middle school or junior high.
When asked about love, people frequently use the word "need." Sharon Salzberg analyzes this intermingling and why we should find a way to disentangle them to better understanding of real need, and real love.
The once thick, black line between personal and professional connections appears to be fading. Its replacement is a new kind of network rooted in our relatedness and built on the generosity authentic friendships.
For the end of Suicide Awareness Month, an elegy for a vibrant but fragile life unraveled by mental health — and one woman's challenge to recognize love in the presence of desperation.
Forgiveness is not easily granted. But, summoning the deepest compassion for ourselves and others may allow both parties to move on without bitterness. Through the bittersweet story of her friend, Sharon Salzberg imparts a lesson about the shifting course of relationships and a path to peace.
Dogs and humans have lived alongside each other for thousands of years. Could it be that each species has impacted the evolution of the other? And could dogs be an essential element in human self-actualization?
In a culture of accumulation and hoarding, many are experiencing a growing exasperation with owning things that, as it turns out, aren't necessary. Could the "sharing economy" help restore spiritual calm?
The Magic Hedge is an oasis on the outskirts of Chicago renowned for its excellent birdwatching. With the hopes of sighting of a rare bird, two friends venture forth to encounter small miracles, the warmth of unexpected community, and the blessings of stillness.
While eavesdropping, our columnist witnesses the intimacy of two strangers generously listening to one another — without an intent to save, fix, or advise. A lesson in witnessing over chicken wings.
Holidays like Passover create occasions for encounter, however strange they may be. And those encounters may lead to friendships that create new possibilities.
Some of the best things of the week: on quiet nobility, thin places, the fist of fate, severed friendships, and Malcolm X.
Closure may not be all it's cracked up to be. Courtney Martin on the death of a friendship and the insatiable, sometimes unsatisfying, need to create silver linings where none exist.