Of all the tribes of people, why is it that a group of pastoral tribal nomads, who were minorities then and minorities now, seem to have such an enduring presence in our world? Because ideas and the details matter. Their ideas have stood the test of time and ended up shaping many assumptions we take today to be self-evident in Western civilization.
Throughout history, as far back as our hunter gatherer ancestors, humans thought in the form of symbols. And what they saw in their dreams and imaginations, just as we do today, were symbols for things that contained emotional…
This is the first part of a series where I explore different aspects, events, and ingredients necessary for the concept of universal human equality. Not being the normal expectation throughout the majority of human history, I wanted to understand where the concept came from and how it has come to be “self-evident.” …
No, not technically. But that’s the wrong question. What we should be asking is if its ideas are solid, coherent, and what are the fruits of its applications? Racism is the idea that someone’s race is superior to another race. Even though there is “color-consciousness” in critical race theory, it does not explicitly hold any race to be superior. But the structure of a critical theory requires this type of question because of something that makes critical theories unique in academia. They do not simply seek out knowledge or truth. They also tell us what to do with their perceived…
It has now become satirical how woke statements parallel what racists are stating. But it makes sense for people who share the same basic world view to speak using the same language and framework. The shared language and conclusions are but mere symptoms of a much deeper illness: a world view based on power struggles between groups of people divided primarily by race. While one group wants their own race to be on top, the other believes that it is time for other groups to “take their turn.” However, both are wrong. …
I often see what I believe to be the miracle of the United States framed as its original sin. This original sin is centered around something like “a nation founded on the principle of equality enslaved people.” And while it is absolutely true that the idea was written down prior to it being a social reality, identifying that as a sin is antithetical to the manner in which the concept of common humanity has been invented (not discovered) and then spread into the milieu of our cultural expectations throughout world history.
Anyone can easily take a look at four quarters, ten dimes, twenty nickels, one hundred pennies, or a dollar bill and understand that they all have the same value. But those different groupings are obviously very different. Their weight, utility, and even colors and designs are incredibly different, not to mention the enumerable various ways to shift coins around in order to produce a dollar. All of these variations produce the same value, but they are by no means the same. That’s a pretty easy concept to understand. So why can we not understand that about people?
There seems to…
In reading ancient history, it often feels like I’m reading about an alien people. “There’s no way these people are human!” — but they were. What they thought and how they came to their conclusions is so foreign to me that I could barely imagine communicating with them, even if we spoke the same language.
For example, imagine today the United States went to war with North Korea. Nobody used nukes and it remained a conventional war. At the end of the war, the United States wins and our reward for victory includes the slavery of all North Koreans. The…
Most of us by now have thought about or at least heard the idea that race is a social construct. By social construct, people mean that there is no scientific — or more specifically, significant genetic — difference between people of different races. And that is for the most part true.
Here’s a quick rundown of how that happened:
In the 17th century, the new science of natural history was in its early periods of development. …
With every new life you bring us,
Is potential you dare not comprehend.
With every new life you bring us,
Is potential for your greatest suffering.
Knowing sooner or later,
The world will destroy us.
Knowing every moment of Being is worth the suffering.
You nurture our strength to face inevitable suffering,
Because every instant of Being devours its shadow.
In the face of great suffering,
You chose the potential of Being.
You may never say it,
But you know.
In awe at your willingness to face such suffering,
For the actuality of Being,
We may fail to say it,
But we know…
Have you ever referred to a person in your life as “warm-hearted”? Most of us have. However, nobody assumes we are referring to the actual temperature of that person’s heart as measured in degrees Fahrenheit. “Warm-hearted” uses a physical metaphor to describe the nature of a person. In this case, the person we are describing is likely open and nurturing. The same principle applies to being colorblind.
I’ve got questions. Writing helps me find the answers. Husband, dad, Afghan vet, healthcare process consultant, former fitness guru.