Marilynne Robinson and A Common Faith

Robinson reflects on our flawed notions of human nature @ Guernica. All thinking about the good society, what is to be wished for in the way of life in community, necessarily depends on assumptions about human nature. All sorts of things have been assumed about human nature, and have been found persuasive or at least… Read more »

Our Winter Ourselves

Andrew Taggart explores the meanings a season can give us in his review of Winter: Five Windows on the Season by Adam Gopnik. Last winter in New York City, Mayor Bloomberg forgot his shovels. The subways stopped, the children reveled, and the grownups got especially good at kvetching in unison. This was winter, we thought. But the… Read more »

Alberto Manguel on the Fountain of Youth

Manguel considers the pleasures and burdens of living an endless life @ Three Penny Review. Ten or twelve years ago, when I was visiting Berlin, Stan Persky took me to see Cranach the Elder’s painting of the Fountain of Youth at the Gemäldegalerie. It is a medium-sized canvas that depicts, in excruciating detail, a rectangular… Read more »

In this serendipity there was exquisite beauty

  Andrew Taggart reflects on making meaning out of fragments @ Butterflies & Wheels. When I was 16, I was confirmed Lutheran. By the time I got to college, I’d been won over to atheism. Seemed like a no brainer at the time. Sometime after that, though, I lost my way and gained some insight.(This,… Read more »

We have had to quarrel with our time

  Andrew Taggart on the importance of reflection in tough times @ Spike. This morning I awoke in a wistful mood. The birdsong coming through my bedroom window reminded me of something softer and higher but also, and less faintly, of something long absent. When I’m feeling wistful, my mind gets older and, without my… Read more »