Human beings have often engaged in the search for meaning, but today’s economic downturn has brought the subject to light in a new way. People are re-evaluating whether their financial power to accumulate possessions and wealth is the only determining factor of their happiness and success.
In The Little Book of Meaning Laura Berman Fortgang reveals that while our hunger for a “meaningful” life can be enormous, our desire for meaning is usually satiated by small, bite-size morsels of meaning—the small, almost incidental events or “achievements” that comprise the fabric of our lives.
I tried to explain my attraction to “crack-up,” with its suggestion of a psyche in fragments, of something whole that had come apart. I preferred it to “breakdown,” which in some cases denoted nothing stronger than being reduced to tears. “Mental illness,” the term accepted as correct by almost everyone, was out of the question: it covered every disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, including premature ejaculation and cannabis-induced disorder.
No one survives on their own, and no one thrives alone, either. Yes, you might feel an excruciating loneliness after one of life’s hurtful blows. But we are simply not built to survive solo. Isolation will kill us, not protect us. We humans are social animals made for community. Even when family and friends annoy [...]
Over the course of a riveting 75-minute discussion of the birth of Gandhian non-violent activism, I found myself becoming increasingly distressed as I watched students cruising Facebook, checking out the NY Times, editing photo collections, texting, reading People Magazine, shopping for jeans, dresses, sweaters, and shoes on Ebay, Urban Outfitters and J. Crew, reorganizing their social calendars, emailing on Gmail and AOL, playing solitaire, doing homework for other classes, chatting on AIM, and buying tickets on Expedia (I made a list because of my disbelief). From my perspective in the back of the room, while Dalton vividly described desperate Indian mothers throwing their children into a deep well to escape the barrage of bullets, I noticed that a girl in front of me was putting her credit card information into Urban Outfitters.com. She had finally found her shoes!
There is much at stake. Embracing the patterns of victimhood has cost the human race a great deal. Headlines of terrorism, violence, and disaster assault us with increasing frequency. And the mass of victims grows daily. Individuals blame one another. Communities put up walls. Nations blame nations. How can we turn the victim tide, reaching [...]
The Healing Touch – By Sandra Blakeslee and Matthew Blakeslee, Authors of The Body Has a Mind of its Own
Imagine lying on a therapy table as a healer places her hand under the back of your neck. Her touch is gentle, calm, tranquil. She places her other hand lightly onto your left shoulder, then onto your right shoulder. A sensation of tingling warmth ripples through your body. A nagging pain in your lower back [...]