iOS app Android app

Existentialism

To Pimp a Butterfly: Redefining Freedom and the American Dream

Julian Mitchell | Posted 03.18.2015 | Black Voices
Julian Mitchell

Channeling the revolutionary essence of the Harlem Renaisance, Kendrick Lamar's To Pimp a Butterfly is a gripping, soul-driven melodrama that masterfully depicts the story of a courageous young man fighting through the painful process of liberating himself.

Tyler Perry's Movie Milestone

Shayne Lee | Posted 04.05.2015 | Entertainment
Shayne Lee

This year's Black History Month marks the 10-year anniversary of Tyler Perry's career as a filmmaker. In February 2005, Perry released Diary of a Mad Black Woman, as writer and producer. His successful debut effort generated sales almost 10 times its budget.

The Existential Crisis of the Half-Awake State

Amanda Glassman | Posted 03.29.2015 | Science
Amanda Glassman

It's 3 a.m., and my mind is moving at hyperspeed. Plagued by the same thoughts, at this same inconvenient time: Where is my life going? Am I using these precious seconds, minutes, days right? How am I giving back to the world? AM. I. ADEQUATE?

Why Cat Listicles Fail To Answer The Soul's Cry

Brain Pickings | Maria Popova | Posted 01.20.2015 | World

Boredom has a long cultural history and an adaptive function in human life — it serves a vital creative purpose and protects us by helping us tolera...

Why My Dog Going Gray Is Killing Me

Julie Fingersh | Posted 03.03.2015 | Fifty
Julie Fingersh

I love my dog, but I will not dress him up. I will not buy him an elevated water bowl or a doggie sofa. The fact that I live in Marin County, Calif., land of certified dog massage therapy, cashmere canine wardrobes and fake service-dog vests, only strengthens my resolve to stay normal.

Ode to Eric Garner From the City of Shiva

Caleb Brooks | Posted 02.04.2015 | World
Caleb Brooks

I've been sitting here trying to process it all and I don't claim to have any answers. I don't always know where I fit into the narrative of humanity that only becomes grander the more I walk down its many passages.

Birdman: Existentialist Selfie

Sandra Ramos O’Briant | Posted 12.20.2014 | Entertainment
Sandra Ramos O’Briant

The story rushed headlong into all the hard questions revolving around love, death and what gives life meaning, but they were overlain with the pop culture vagaries that make everything and everyone seem shallow these days.

Is Life an Illusion?

Seth Shostak | Posted 12.10.2014 | Science
Seth Shostak

Do you ever wonder about the meaning of life, and in particular your life? Well, of course you do, but maybe you should ease up on the angst. There are academics who say you don't have a life. You're just an app.

Why Every College Student Should Be an Existentialist

Paul Stefanski | Posted 12.08.2014 | College
Paul Stefanski

In the end, existentialism is about learning how to say, "it's just life," and moving on. And even though college may seem like the most important thing we will ever do, worrying about it can only make things worse.

The 7-Letter Word

Mitch Ditkoff | Posted 11.29.2014 | Comedy
Mitch Ditkoff

Like all great games, works of genius, love affairs, and near death experiences, there is a defining moment, in Scrabble, that reigns supreme -- one existential, moon howling, Job-in-the-belly-of-the-whale moment that, metaphorically speaking, I imagine was at least partially responsible for Van Gogh cutting off his ear.

How Existentialism Set Me Free

Brian Hanley | Posted 11.25.2014 | Healthy Living
Brian Hanley

In an unexpected way though, existentialism set me free. It reminded me that my purpose on earth was undefined and more importantly, that I could choose how to live. It reassured me that since I originated from nothing and ultimately would return to nothing, I had nothing to lose.

Boyhood's Answer To The Existential Confusion Of The Millennial Generation

Jock Gilchrist | Posted 11.23.2014 | Healthy Living
Jock Gilchrist

As so many unremarkable events pass by -- a graduation, family dinner, departure for college -- the subtext of the events comes to the foreground. We skip from day to day, event to event -- what is the point of it all?

Lucy, I Heart Huckabees, Her, Transcendence and Being John Malkovich...

J.J. Colagrande | Posted 10.04.2014 | Comedy
J.J. Colagrande

So basically now I'm thinking we're everywhere and nowhere; we're all the same; there is no such thing as time, or at least it's very slippery; today is tomorrow; I am he as you are he as you are me and we are all together; AND, to top it all off, we can all live forever.

4 Life Lessons We Can Learn From Jean-Paul Sartre

The Philosophers' Mail | Posted 07.21.2014 | World

Jean-Paul Sartre was born in 1905. His father, a navy captain, died when he was a baby – and he grew up extremely close to his mother until she rema...

Godzilla vs. Godot

Peter W. Wood | Posted 06.25.2014 | Education
Peter W. Wood

Godot, of course, was no monster, but Godzilla and Godot have more in common than a first syllable. They are the two opposing faces of despair: a god that is pure wrath and a god that never shows up. Both emanate from the devastation of World War II.

Why Buddhist Meditation Can't Solve All Our Problems

Ted Cadsby | Posted 06.21.2014 | Religion
Ted Cadsby

Our muddling is forever constant because the human condition is a predicament to be continually managed, not a problem to be fixed or solved.

Our Cocoon -- A Poem

Jacob Weber | Posted 04.20.2014 | Arts
Jacob Weber

You're still sleeping. And I'm up, trying to work, to focus to not log on to you know what. I catch a moth in the dim hall search every inch of a cl...

All Is Lost and the Human Condition

Charles J. Reid, Jr. | Posted 01.23.2014 | Entertainment
Charles J. Reid, Jr.

Is the whole struggle for life pointless? Meaningless? The void, the chasm that is deep space, the infinity that envelops us, does anything finally matter? Why resist the closing of the light?

Choice Theory

Francis Levy | Posted 11.27.2013 | Healthy Living
Francis Levy

The Times ran the obit of William Glasser ("William Glasser, 88, Doctor Who Said One Could Choose Happiness, Is Dead," NYT, 9/4/13). Syntactically it'...

Why Our Thoughts Are Not Real

Nancy Colier | Posted 09.22.2013 | Healthy Living
Nancy Colier

Let's say that at this moment you are having a thought about a friend, something specific that she did, and what you want to say to her in response. That friend who you are thinking about is not experiencing your thought. If you don't engage with that thought, it will literally not exist.

Happy Birthday, Soren Kierkegaard!

S. Brent Plate | Posted 07.06.2013 | Religion
S. Brent Plate

On May 5, 1813, Søren Kierkegaard was born in a well-off home in the northern European town of Copenhagen. The Great Dane's works have found their way woven into fiction and philosophy, especially via that of the 20th-century Existentialists like Heidegger and Sartre.

The Unwavering Human Condition and its Relation to a Despot

William Rose | Posted 05.08.2013 | Politics
William Rose

When a controversial political figure dies, I find it interesting that every college student on Facebook automatically becomes a political science expert.

The Sad Socrates Effect at Harvard

Wyatt Troia | Posted 04.30.2013 | College
Wyatt Troia

What converts our pressure-induced stress into chronic depression and suicidal thoughts? High intelligence may be the culprit.

Review of Jim Holt's Why Does the World Exist?

Michael Roth | Posted 04.13.2013 | Books
Michael Roth

Why do we lose those we love? Why do important parts of our world vanish? These are not questions for a detective story, existential or not. But they are the questions to which, in the end, Holt's wonderfully ambitious book leads us.

A Time to Gather Stones: Nomadism After War in Susanne Slavick's Out of Rubble

G. Roger Denson | Posted 04.10.2013 | Books
G. Roger Denson

2013-02-08-pullquoteRubble, it turns out, is more than a ubiquitous gravel and detritus in the hands of the artists of the twenty-first century.