Seeking the Spiritual Experience in Modern Society

Somewhere between modernity and religious tradition lies a middle road known as “reflexive spirituality” that pulls from pluralism, reflexivity, and modern society. Those who practice reflexive spirituality draw equally on religious traditions and traditions of reason in the pursuit of transcendent meaning.

Wealthier people naturally tend to favor the broadest, least restrictive private property rights, as these allow them to buy their way to the front of many kinds of lines. But in his book "Think Like a Commoner," David Bollier asks us to consider a different paradigm of social and moral order.

Under Your Skin

Skin is of course your body’s largest organ, but what are the functions of that organ? What happens within and under your skin? Leading dermatologist Dr. Robert Norman answers these questions in his book The Blue Man and Other Stories of Skin.

What Makes the American Empire Tick?

Can the American empire survive? In Decline and Fall, author John Michael Greer reasons that it cannot. Shedding new light on the misunderstood idea of empire and the costs of imperial overstretch, Greer shows how the U.S. has backed itself into a corner in the pursuit of political and economic power and explores the inevitable consequences of imperial collapse.

Peeling Back the Label

The global food system is profoundly flawed—there’s enough food being produced yet one in eight are undernourished; food and beverage companies pollute water sources and have unfair labor practices; costs related to diabetes amount to $245 billion dollars annually in the U.S. and rates are only expected to rise. To bring awareness to some of these problems, Oxfam developed the Behind the Brands campaign. 

"The rise in autism has been with us for more than two decades, and we have little to show about what’s causing it. We have many hundreds of thousands of functionally disabled people who didn’t exist before, and we have our heads in the sand."

- Jill Escher, mother of two autistic children, whose personal research led epigenetic researchers to make a possible connection between synthetic hormones prescribed in the 1960s for fertility and a risk of autism that travels through generations. 

Arunachalam Muruganantham’s interest in the state of menstrual hygiene in India began in 1998 when he discovered that his wife was using dirty rags in place of sanitary napkins to save money for food. 

Psychiatrist David D. Burns talks about the importance of walking to the gates of hell with his patients when dealing with anxiety and depression:
"When Burns asks the therapists who would have backed off when Terri said she was going to die, almost all raise their hands - despite knowing that the best treatment for most people with anxiety is exposure to the very thing they fear most."
 

Psychiatrist David D. Burns talks about the importance of walking to the gates of hell with his patients when dealing with anxiety and depression:

"When Burns asks the therapists who would have backed off when Terri said she was going to die, almost all raise their hands - despite knowing that the best treatment for most people with anxiety is exposure to the very thing they fear most."

 

A Lifelong Activist Reflects on the ’60s and the Future of Social Justice

Standing in CJ Brune’s cavernous library on the south side of Lawrence, Kansas, it’s hard not to get caught up in history. Along with hundreds of books on everything from Afghan geopolitics to radical feminism, the walls are adorned with countless campaign stickers, buttons, and posters. Together they recall a radical lineage: the fiery words of Emma Goldman and Eugene Debs, campaign posters for the Youth International Party, antiwar slogans demanding peace in Vietnam, Iraq, and El Salvador.

"Just take a look at gender and the web comes quickly into focus, leaving you with a vivid sense of which direction the internet is heading in and — small hint — it’s not toward equality or democracy."

— Writer and filmmaker Astra Taylor on how the internet creates space for many voices, but also reflects and often amplifies real-world inequalities in striking ways.