The now-prevalent culture of mastery and expertise take root in ideas of grit and the "10,000-hour rule." But, doing something new for the first time, even just a little, changes your sense of it altogether.
Oceanographer Sylvia Earle on respecting the resilience of nature, new learnings from Krista Tippett on self-compassion in life and career, and more deliberations on living alongside one another.
A reflection from Christian Wiman on finding God and wonder in all the world's imperfection.
Paul Muldoon pauses in a suspended moment, away from the chaos of the world, alone with the soothing roar of rain.
Is a life made, or grown? A contemplation from Parker Palmer and Marge Piercy on the quiet, joyful work of tending to ourselves as wild, flourishing thickets of life.
Essential celebrations of the strength and beauty that surround us, from new life and community to the poetry of words and images.
An invocation for gratitude — for the open spaces around us, for the quiet resilience of nature, and for the power of vulnerability to open us to new possibilities.
Parker Palmer offers up a remedy for feeling adrift: embracing surprise, and taking on sense of reverence to mystery.
We find ourselves in a time of deep reckoning, and we must turn to each other for companionship and wisdom. Collected guidance on claiming the whole of our identities, and finding compassion for experiences that are not our own.
Learning from our mistakes doesn't mean we have to obsess over our failures. Parker Palmer and Mary Oliver on the space nature provides for catharsis, so that we can move on to self-forgiveness.
The enduring beauty of nature can be a comfort, but sometimes our pain needs a more empathetic salve. Parker Palmer turns to the unique, healing power of language in times of darkness and hardship.
When we over do the things we love, sometimes the solution isn't to do less or more but to do it differently. Sarah Smarsh reflects on treasuring the method of running over the measurement of it — and learning to scramble and splash with intention.
Inspired by a beautiful hike in the Swiss mountains, Omid Safi with a meditation on the jaggedness of our hearts' stones, then and now. And some photos to illustrate it.
Glory and beauty are co-opted by our catalogues. A photo-essay deglosses the primordial glory of the natural world to find the stuff of deeper life.
Nature cannot erase grief, but makes it easier to bear. A woman holds fleeting memories of familial warmth as she visits mid-coast Maine, and finds solace in the brave journey of the alewives from sea to lake and back again.
We lost a beloved cultural icon last week, and his life of work has inspired an outpouring of love in music and story. Celebrations of Prince's life accompany praise for standing up together, in support of our strengths and growth from moments of weakness.
From John Muir and Wendell Berry to Henry David Thoreau, a celebration of the earth through a granddaughter's memory and the writers who love it — paired with gorgeous aerial photography.
The beauty of spring is as much in its muddiness as in its blooms. An encouragement to revel in the dance of mess and lavishness in this most colorful season.
When the demands of daily life drain us, a respite in solitude is exactly what we need. A testament to the power of aloneness to reconnect us with the steady sense of self we lose.
After a stint in the rain, our columnist comes to appreciate a new orientation to gray days, both in meteorology and in life.
If there's one thing winter teaches its humbled residents, it's that gratitude begins before the snow falls and happiness finds new heart in the thaw.
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.
On a retreat at a cabin in the northern woods of Wisconsin, Parker Palmer strings together pearls of contemplation on silence and solitude. With the help of Merton and Rumi, he finds the catharsis of being forced to reckon with one's angels and demons.
What happens when we open ourselves to the gift of vulnerability? Profound voices on public displays of emotion in politics, the making of identity, the inspiration of wilderness, and advice from a classical pianist on pursuing what moves you and being glad in others' good fortunes.