The 40-Year-Old Rhizome

In each of their co-written works, Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari present a prolific array of concepts that traverse a wide range of theories and disciplines. To put it simply, their concepts are oriented around facilitating creative forms of life amid the erosion of subjectivity in capitalist societies. One of the most frequently cited ofContinue reading “The 40-Year-Old Rhizome”

Amoeba Words

“What is an amoeba word?” Amoeba words include many of the words thrown around when people are talking philosophically. The philosopher-priest Ivan Illich explains: I take the term from the work of Professor Uwe Pörksen of Freiburg, a linguist and medievalist. During the second part of the 1980s, he came to the conclusion that thereContinue reading “Amoeba Words”

Dumpster/Fire: Traces of Burning Man

With guiding principles like self-reliance and self-expression, and a focus on an inclusive community of free exchange (decommodified gift economy), the event and culture of Burning Man is a great example of the phenomenon referred to as “contemporary spirituality.” Much of my research is concerned with relationships between religious communities/traditions and the ecological systems withContinue reading “Dumpster/Fire: Traces of Burning Man”

Of Selves and Mirrors

If you want to know whether something or someone possesses a capacity for self-recognition or self-perception, a common test to use is the mirror test. Put people in front of a mirror, and see if they can recognize themselves in their reflections. Can you tell that your reflection is your image, that is, an imageContinue reading “Of Selves and Mirrors”

Poetics, Practice, and Things

Poetry can compress vast acreages of meaning into a small compass or perform the kind of bold linkages that would take reams of academic argument to plot; it can widen the aperture of our gaze or deposit us on the brink of transformation… One of the most striking and unsettling aspects of the Anthropocene isContinue reading “Poetics, Practice, and Things”

The Practice of Wisdom

Wisdom is not a mind-hack or life-hack or any kind of hack. It’s not a way of cutting through life’s difficulties with tips or tricks. It’s not a set strategies or operations that can be adopted in piecemeal or applied in pertinent situations. It’s more of a path than a hack. It’s a way ofContinue reading “The Practice of Wisdom”

The Beginning and End of Nature

When people talk about the end of nature, what exactly is this nature that has ended? It’s not like the whole universe imploded. Earth is still spinning. Nature isn’t the universe, and it’s not a planet. It’s nature. Nature is an idea, a word, a symbol, which is not to say that it is merelyContinue reading “The Beginning and End of Nature”

What is Philosophy?

What is philosophy? There are so many definitions of philosophy. It is not altogether unlikely that the “What is…?” question is not the best way to approach a definition of philosophy. There are many other important questions for defining and describing philosophy. Who are philosophers? What do philosophers do? How does one become a philosopher?Continue reading “What is Philosophy?”

Archetypal Astrology: Questions and Problems

Despite exaggerated claims about the disenchantment of the world in the modern age, religious traditions and esoteric spirituality never went away, which is not to say that the persistence of enchantment didn’t cause severe anxiety among some who wished that those things would go away. Among the persistent modes of enchantment is the practice ofContinue reading “Archetypal Astrology: Questions and Problems”

The Task of Philosophy

Hegel gives an apt description of this salient difference between ancient and contemporary approaches to philosophical study. It basically goes like this. Under the weight of several centuries of tradition, philosophical study today finds ready-made theories and answers everywhere, a plethora of prefab homes for thinking. Whereas ancient philosophers learned to let a theory growContinue reading “The Task of Philosophy”