The Freedom of No Recipe

Photo by Todd Quackenbush | Rather than force reality to bend to will, a Zen chef cooks—and lives—with what is. By Edward Espe Brown Take up a blade of grass and construct a treasure king’s land; enter into a particle of dust and turn the great dharma wheel. —Zen master Dogen Enlightened by the ingredients, you follow your nose. When we are captivated by the everyday, we often look for the recipe: how shall I cook so that the food comes out the way it should, no one criticizes my efforts, and I do not risk being seen as less than … Continue reading The Freedom of No Recipe

Dear Therapist: I Still Obsess About My Ex From a Decade Ago

The Atlantic I’m 40 now, and I feel like a fool. by LORI GOTTLIEB Dear Therapist, I’m a 40-year-old single woman. Never married, no children, and I’ve been struggling for years to get over my ex. He was my first love and we met when I was in my early 20s. It was a very immature relationship that culminated in me breaking up with him finally (for about the third or fourth time), mostly because of a growing fear that I knew I would want kids and was worried that I was wasting my time with someone who wasn’t willing to … Continue reading Dear Therapist: I Still Obsess About My Ex From a Decade Ago

What good is religion?

Clinic run by nuns in the village of Kati, near Bamako, Mali, in 1994. Photo by Abbas/Magnum International development has focussed on material goods, but religion has an important role to play in human flourishing by Manini Sheker is a scholar and writer interested in religion, the arts, social justice, the environment and the good life. Her writing has appeared in The Guardian, openDemocracy and Litro, among others Edited by Sam Haselby The Nobel Prize-winning economist Amartya Sen’s Development as Freedom (1999) begins with a parable from the Brihadaranyaka Upanishad, one of the oldest scriptures of Hinduism. Maitreyi asks her husband Yajnavalkya whether she would achieve immortality if she had all … Continue reading What good is religion?

Life, Death, and Reincarnation as a Dove

image edited by Fernando Kaskais Video by Xavier Marrades When filmmaker Xavier Marrades discovered that his distant relative, Ramon, was closely bonded with an unusual animal, Marrades knew he had to meet him. “My mum showed me a picture of them together and it was quite unbelievable,” Marrades told The Atlantic. “A couple of months later, when I had established trust between me and Ramon, I asked him if he would be okay if I shot [a film] with him and his pet dove, Cucli.” Over the course of four weekends, Marrades filmed Cucli, an exquisite short documentary about love, loss, acceptance, and … Continue reading Life, Death, and Reincarnation as a Dove

What You See in a 3-D Scan of Yourself Could Be Upsetting

Credit: Getty Images The actual and idealized images may not match up By Jessica Ridgway Clayton, The Conversation US The following essay is reprinted with permission from The Conversation, an online publication covering the latest research. Amazon is reportedly looking for people who are willing to have their bodies scanned in 3D in order to track and measure subtle changes in their sizes and shapes. It’s part of the company’s broader push to sell more clothes by more accurately predicting how garments will fit different body shapes. But Amazon may not be considering the psychological effects 3D body scans can have on consumers. In April 2018, I published … Continue reading What You See in a 3-D Scan of Yourself Could Be Upsetting

Why You Should Stop Being So Hard on Yourself

CreditGetty Images   Self-criticism can take a toll on our minds and bodies. It’s time to ease up. By Charlotte Lieberman “We’re all our own worst critics.” Ever heard that one before? Yes, it’s an obnoxious cliché, but it’s not just self-help fluff. Evolutionary psychologists have studied our natural “negativity bias,” which is that instinct in us all that makes negative experiences seem more significant than they really are. In other words: We’ve evolved to give more weight to our flaws, mistakes and shortcomings than our successes. “Self-criticism can take a toll on our minds and bodies,” said Dr. Richard Davidson, … Continue reading Why You Should Stop Being So Hard on Yourself

Escaping the Cycle of Binge and Purge

Photo by Vince Fleming | How Buddhist teachings on mindfulness and self-acceptance helped me with my struggle with bulimia. By Anastasia Selby For a long time, I was sure I’d never recover from my eating disorder. I’d carried it with me for so long; as a little girl I began overeating as a way to protect myself from the neglect and abuse I experienced from my mom, who raised me by herself. I don’t have many childhood memories, but I do remember the feeling of panic that would overtake me when I heard her keys in the door. The first … Continue reading Escaping the Cycle of Binge and Purge