Star Trek: Five TV Shows That Mattered (III)

Star Trek delayed my Dad’s pastoral visit: it had that power. He came to visit a family and they paused him while they finished an original series episode. He understood. A world without DVR’s was like that. Picking Star Trek as a show that mattered is obvious, because it was one of the first television shows that [Read More...]

The Dick Van Dyke Show: Five TV Shows that Mattered (II)

What The Andy Griffith Show did for life in the South, the Dick Van Dyke Show did for the suburbs: TV showed a way that a tract home could house great things or at least great fun. I can never take complaints about the soulless life there seriously, because I knew that Rob and Laura could make [Read More...]

The Andy Griffith Show: Five Television Shows that Mattered (I)

Would I have married her if she did not love the Andy Griffith Show? Probably, but we would not have been as close as we are. Growing up I learned more from reruns of the Andy Griffith Show, than from any number of school classes. I cannot be the only one of my generation. The Andy Griffith Show is [Read More...]

A Whole Soul: The Goal of Education (Part IV)

What should I want for those I love? I want them to be happy, of course, but not at the cost of their soul. If hurting other people makes them happy, then I would prefer those I love be less happy, but better human beings. That is obvious, plain enough that I sometimes forget it [Read More...]

A Thoughtful Soul: Part of Being Whole (Part III)

I think, therefore I am. So runs the one of the few philosophical quotations almost everyone knows. It does not follow that a person who thinks badly has less “being” than a person who thinks well, but experience shows that most beings that think badly end badly. “If we think, therefore we are,” and we think, [Read More...]

A Spirited Soul: Part of Being Whole (Part II)

This weekend HBU won its first football game: ever. Some schools sell t-shirts that say: “Our School Undefeated in Football since Date of Founding” and HBU once could sell such shirts, but can no longer. We were smacked down hard by the defending champs of our conference in our first game, but came back to [Read More...]

An Erotic Soul: Part of Being Whole (Part I)

Nobody is a Vulcan, not even Vulcans, if Star Trek canon is to be believed: intelligent beings in bodies have passions and suppressing them in unhealthy. Sadly, so is acting on them thoughtlessly. Sometimes we forget we have passions, sometimes we are controlled by them: a trick to a good life is accept the passions [Read More...]

On Vocation and Money

Dear Glaucon*, Thank you for questions about vocation. No good person wants to live for money, but all people need to take care of their needs. Curmudgeons of every generation, and I have reached curmudgeon age, tend to believe the fantasy that the “kids” today want it easy. Since every generation since my time has [Read More...]

The End of His Tenure

If he were leading a discussion class on Syria, warfare, and the last twenty years of American policy, I would give Professor Obama high marks. It is impossible for anyone in class to guess his position or views: he has defended many of them. He has eloquently argued for peace in his time, war in [Read More...]

On Mindless Entertainment

Charles Dickens wrote a most excellent essay against proposed Sabbath laws, Sunday Under Three Heads. Certain puritanical types wanted to close absolutely everything closable all Sunday and ban harmless pursuits, though they were harder on the middle-class and poor than the rich. Dickens would not stand for it. He admitted that a day of rest was [Read More...]