Category Archives: Philosophy

Protected: Accidental innocence

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Religious imagination

Few people I know have tried to imagine the possibility of religion that doesn’t revolve around peace, altruism, enlightenment and/or magic. Yes, religious life can certainly revolve around these four notions — but it does not have to — unless … Continue reading

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Simplicity simplified

I was told that my description of simplicity would be confusing to non-designers and non-nerds. Here’s another way to say it… If a person can say all 5 of these statements about a design, they will call the design “simple”: … Continue reading

Posted in Design, Philosophy | 2 Comments

Protected: Jaspers on interpersonal angst

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Protected: Lines

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Jaspers, Latour — and Buber, too

I love Jaspers, but I have to classify him with Rorty as another pre-material turn thinker who manages to say amazing things despite an uncannily precise neglect of the role nonhuman actors play in generating truth, and in Jaspers’s case, … Continue reading

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I am not yet persuaded

People – especially empathic people – can sometimes forget that they, too, have a right to be persuaded. They unconsciously assume the burden of persuasion, and feel that if they have not persuaded others to their belief, they do not … Continue reading

Posted in Ethics, Philosophy, Politics | 3 Comments

Progressivists

As Christian fundamentalists who wish to forcibly impose their views on a population are called Christianists, and as Islamic fundamentalists who wish to forcibly impose their views on a population are called Islamists, Progressive fundamentalists who wish to forcibly impose … Continue reading

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Classy progressives

Conversations among progressives can be confusing. When politics is the topic, everything seems very leftist. They regard exclusivity, privilege, elitism, inequality, unfairness and consumerism as abhorrent and are quick to call it out when they see it. But when the … Continue reading

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Design: thinking, crafting and actualizing

This post has also been published on my company’s blog. To be effective in any design discipline it is certainly necessary to master the universal methods of design. Whether you call these methods Human-Centered Design (HCD) or Design Thinking or … Continue reading

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Performative contradiction

Poking around in Karl Jaspers: An Introduction to His Philosophy, I just read something that would serve nicely as a definition of performative contradiction: “to deny by example what is affirmed by assertion.” I may need to read this whole … Continue reading

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Faith space

Normally I don’t publish this kind of disorganized mess, but today I feel compelled to reflect on what feels like a constricting world, where liberal space from others is increasing scarce. * A person’s beliefs are not the same as … Continue reading

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Faith in faithfulness

Faith is the relationship we have with reality beyond what is present to our experience, the being that inspires our warmest love and coldest dread, the being upon which we depend for our very being, the being with the potential … Continue reading

Posted in Ethics, Judaism, Metaphysics, Philosophy | 4 Comments

Art and world

Art affirms a world, completes a world or promises a world. The affirmation of a world that is not full of positive significance and potential does nothing but provide folks with refashioning of the expected: safe novelties. A world that … Continue reading

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3 C’s of service design

More on this later, but I wanted to jot down this framework: Service design aims to get three things right: Continuity: ensure the whole experience is designed without thoughtless gaps at any unconsidered moment where the customer is confused, frustrated … Continue reading

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The “yes, but, so” of pseudoliberalism

What is it about Rorty that makes him so satisfying to disagree with? Rorty’s mistakes and omissions make me like him even more. Maybe it is because his ultimate goals and tacit evaluations correspond to my own, and our disagreements … Continue reading

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Rorty on public and private beliefs

This passage from Rorty’s absolutely brilliant essay “Pragmatism as Romantic Polytheism” made a very deep impression on my politics: I turn now to the other big difference between Nietzsche on the one hand and James and Dewey on the other. … Continue reading

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Emergency and hubris

An inclination to see emergencies — emergencies being states of affairs demanding extraordinary means to address an immediate dire threat of some kind — can often seem more motivated by a strong inclination to use extraordinary means than in the … Continue reading

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Jaspers on philosophy and science

From Philosophy, “Epilogue 1955”: This came to be the great philosophical challenge: to hold on to science, to keep testing by its standards of compelling certainty, and yet to do our ascertaining in the realm of our lives. The point … Continue reading

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Judging judgment

Whenever I hear stories about how unjustly the emerging generation deals with the injustices of past generations I recall Anaximander’s immortal snark: Beings must pay penance and be judged for their injustices, in accordance with the ordinance of time. We … Continue reading

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