Perspective: Madame Recamier by David. René Magritte, 1949. Once, after accompanying my wife to the train station, I got lost walking home. Fortunately, I had my phone with me; unfortunately, it was not a smartphone. I called my wife. “I’m lost,” I said. “Where are you standing?” she asked. I told her that I was … Continue reading Where Are You Standing?
Crew at the capstan of the 'Parma', weighing anchor, 1932-33. In chapter 2 of Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Tom gets a group of boys to perform a job that he was supposed to do. At the end of the chapter, he thinks about what he had learned. Tom said to himself that … Continue reading Are You Turning Play into Work?
Gridiron Victoria: Geelong Buccaneers. Photo by John Torcasio. Unsplash. In “Seven Pillars of Faith,” Rabbi Yitzchok Breiter, a devoted follower of Rebbe Nachman of Breslov, writes the following: The foundation of all of Rebbe Nachman’s teachings is to know and understand that everything that happens to us, both spiritually and materially, including what we ourselves … Continue reading Football and Free Will
Portrait of Russian poet Konstantin Batyushkov, 1815, by Nikolai Utkin. Do you believe in ghosts, shades, spirits? Do you think you have a soul that will survive the death of your body; or is your body all there is? What evidence would you have? This morning, as every morning, in the gray light of early … Continue reading What Evidence Would You Have?
Birch grove, Isaac Levitan, 1889. Many times, so it seems to me, we feel as if our generation was the first one to become aware of a problem or attempt to solve it. I’ve found this not to be true so many times that I’ve become skeptical of such claims. Below is an excerpt from … Continue reading Trembling Under the Blows
Janusz Korczak Monument, Jewish Cemetery, Warsaw. ©2018 Beth Ben-Avraham. From Wladyslaw Szpilman’s The Pianist: The Extraordinary Story of One Man's Survival in Warsaw, 1939-45: One day, around 5 August , when I had taken a brief rest from work and was walking down Gęsia Street, I happened to see Janusz Korczak and his orphans leaving … Continue reading He Would Not Leave Them Alone
“The Embrace” Some of my fondest memories as a child are of my mother’s singing to me. She was born and grew up in Appalachia. Most of the songs she sang were the hillbilly, bluegrass, or country songs she knew and loved. One of them, “The Knoxville Girl,” has an intriguing history, but I can’t … Continue reading Life’s Crooked Road