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Sensitivity

When done well, philosophy does two things: it shows how two similar things are actually rather different, and it shows how two different things are actually rather similar. This is an essay about the second class of philosophy. We generally think of cooking, gardening, dancing, painting, building, parenting, and writing as having nothing in common. […]

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Space

We tend to romanticise willpower, believing that if we simply try harder, focus more intently, or exert ourselves a little more, then we will reach our goal. While this may sometimes be true, it remains an incomplete picture, and therefore, an untruth. Exercising willpower will lead in two radically different directions: This is not as […]

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Meditations on Ouroboros

I Like the dog chasing its own tail, Ouroboros has forgotten a part belonging to himself. There is a split, a splinter separating the head (mind) and tail (body), and this split manifests in many diverse yet similar ways. Think of our chemically enhanced foods which stimulate the mind but malnourish the body, or cigarettes […]

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A Parable

It was a warm summer evening as King Darius and Abtin, his scribe, were walking the winding paths of the palace gardens. Surveying his beautifully manicured gardens, the king leant forward to breathe in the perfume of particularly striking Chrysanthemum. At this point, Abtin felt a whisper of ice cold air run up his spine. […]

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The Vegetable Garden As Teacher

To live virtuously, we need look no further than the garden, for it is the most steadfast and honest of teachers. Through the act of gardening, we learn humility, patience, kindness, empathy, and commitment; and likewise receive an antidote to the vices of arrogance, impatience, selfishness and hubris. I Kneeling down in prayer in front […]

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Beyond Small Talk

Seen for what it is, small talk is imprisonment of false bonhomie and an utter failure of communication. But, seen for what it could be, small talk is an opportunity to step beyond the banal and into the deepest and most intimate realms of another’s mind. But such an imperative can be overwhelmingly intimidating. As […]

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Meaningful Work

If you had asked a serf 400 years ago if they found their work fulfilling, they would have looked at you in confusion; the necessity of work was absolute, the type of work was non-negotiable, and toil was considered a part of the process; a type of thinking which backgrounded Max Weber’s The Protestant Ethic […]

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A Tale of Two Flowers

Two seeds carried on the back of a strong wind were cast into a garden. One seed fell into a sunny bed of soil, which was judiciously cared for by the gardener who lived on the land. The second seed slipped through the cracks of the concrete upon which the gardener walked. The first seed […]

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A Blank Page

For writers (including yours truly), a blank page can be terrifying, even debilitating. Signalling a potential waiting to be realised, it is likewise unlimited potential, potential without direction; any decision taken closes down others which could have been made in its stead. To the extent that a blank page signals absolute freedom, it likewise signals […]

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The More Loving One

Looking up at the stars, I know quite wellThat, for all they care, I can go to hell,But on earth indifference is the leastWe have to dread from man or beast. How should we like it were stars to burnWith a passion for us we could not return?If equal affection cannot be,Let the more loving […]

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