Tag: family

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August 17, 2017

Reflections to hearten life amid chaos and pain — from a new take on efficiency to the breaking and remaking that shape our grief.

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August 14, 2017

A reflection acknowledging that the injustice of suffering can’t be wrapped up in a neat bow of closure. Instead, we the author looks to her culture’s understanding of ancestry — in the responsibility we have to the loved ones we’ve lost.

People gather around the communal dining table.
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August 10, 2017

We need to get wiser about efficiency — about when it’s a good thing, and when it saps us of the slow and messy connections that help us learn, grow, and thrive.

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August 8, 2017

A loving ode to ancestral land — and to the body of the earth from which we all come and to which we all return.

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August 8, 2017

In the quest to have it all, a daughter of Asian immigrants discovers that “the breaking takes time.” Might we, she asks, build narrower lawns and wider minds?

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August 3, 2017

In her cohousing community in Oakland, our columnist is experiencing something all-too-rare: deep friendships across generations. What if we turned more actively to the wisdom — and plain old good company — of our neighbors, older and younger?

Waves break off Sunset Beach, California. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)
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August 2, 2017

From remembering police captain and dharma teacher Cheri Maples to soliciting perspectives on solitude and being alone, our editor in chief’s list of the week’s most compelling commentaries on motherhood, solitude, eldering, male vulnerability, and exile.

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July 27, 2017

Our columnist gets honest about missing true solitude as a mother of young girls, and reflects on how crucial it is for women to carve out space to nurture no one but themselves.

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July 26, 2017

An ode to a sentence from the legendary poet on recognizing and honoring the sacrifices of generations past to get us where we are — and on “paying it forward” as the best way to pay them back.

The author at her family's Beijing home (from L-R, host grandmother, sister, Solimine, father, and mother) during Mid-Autumn Festival, 1996.
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July 21, 2017

Through the intimacy of chosen mother-daughterhood, a woman navigates the fraught territory of craving Chinese identity as a white American — and recognizes that some identities cannot be earned or learned, but are gifts passed on.

Orüç Güvenç performs.
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July 19, 2017

Learning of the great ethnomusicologist’s death, our columnist offers an “ocean of remembrance” in return for the Turkish Sufi master who embodied the poetry of Islam in both his music and his being.

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July 13, 2017

Can being lost be productive? Our columnist on lingering in the mystery of our purpose — and surrendering to the paths that choose us.

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July 11, 2017

Our Letter from Loring Park opens our application process for the inaugural On Being Gathering. And, articles on the complexities of family and love, giving up on the myth of perfection, grappling with inherited prejudice and being recognized for who we are, and on a revolution that starts within.

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June 30, 2017

A woman’s story of her family — fractured and bruised but not without deep, complex love. A reflection on mental illness and divorce, the infinite shapes a home can take, and the courage to carve out space in a world built around conventions.

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June 16, 2017

A loving ode to an exemplar of old-school hard work and generosity, and a model for public life in our time.

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June 14, 2017

Our stories hold power no matter the circumstances of our lives. A Hmong-American woman looks on her father’s modest life, and her own — through refugee camps in Thailand to their new life in the American Midwest — and reveals lessons from the powerless on our inherent dignity, even through our most vulnerable times.

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June 10, 2017

The questions of who matters and what’s really important run through each entry in this week’s edition of Letter from Loring Park.

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May 20, 2017

Listeners challenge all of us to grow after listening to our interview with Glenn Beck. A writer contemplates her preoccupation with death after he mother’s passing. How men can live longer if they nurture deep friendships. And how humor helps us survive — a preview of the new season of our Creating Our Own Lives podcast.

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May 17, 2017

A young man becomes a listening nomad; a missing violin brings a musician closer to herself; a community of Detroiters meditates with Sylvia Boorstein; Courtney Martin mourns the freedoms of childlessness. Reflections on the unexpected places where we find deep truth in ourselves and each other.

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May 12, 2017

Parenting is a joy and a gift — but we should also give parents space to acknowledge the lost freedoms of youth that they miss. Courtney looks wistfully back to what life was like before her daughters, alongside the huge love and gratitude she feels for motherhood.

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May 6, 2017

Witnessing the faint smile of her dying mother, the daughter of Haitian-Creole parents reflects on why she’s been writing about death and grief ever since — and the cathartic edge of the Book of Revelation and C.S. Lewis.

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May 6, 2017

The companionship of Thomas Merton; an inspiring faith in our nation’s potential; and the spiritual work of environmental care.

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April 22, 2017

A lesson on gilding our flaws; the fresh air of the Easter and Passover season; a visual tour of a haunting ritual; and Brené Brown’s encouragement for those who are done with fear.

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April 21, 2017

There may not be one magic key to successful relationships. But it helps for us to share this goal: to have our partners’ back, no matter what chaos life throws our way.

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April 14, 2017

Creating a false division between life and work has its own pitfalls.

AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND - APRIL 08: Ray Hooper riding Toss Woollaston cools off during the Karekare Beach Races on April 8, 2017 in Auckland, New Zealand. The event on Auckland's West Coast raises funds for Lone Kauri School and the Karekare Surf Lifesaving Club. (Photo by Phil Walter/Getty Images)
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April 8, 2017

When a listener asks a question, a new conversation emerges. And other ideas on the harm of literalism in family life, the virtue of truth-telling, transforming anger, praise for an unappreciated generation; and others.

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April 1, 2017

Wisdom on mortality from Ira Byock; a young woman’s reflection on magic and memory; Sharon Salzberg on recalibrating brain bias; and Krista’s five approaches to a wise life.

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April 1, 2017

A young woman on growing up half-Chinese and half-Irish in Southern California’s largest Asian enclave, and the journey to understanding her “hapa” identity not as incoherent parts, but as a perfect whole.

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March 31, 2017

What if we learned to trust in the resilience of our relationships, and recognized the occasional necessity of butting heads with the ones we love?

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March 24, 2017

The elemental closeness of a mother to her children, and to her own body.

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March 18, 2017

Courtney Seiberling on rediscovering the magic of things, even after deep loss seems to drain our world of wonder.

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March 11, 2017

Interrogating our anger, honoring our elders, facing the truth of life’s fragility, and helpful new discussion guides for Becoming Wise — the best of what’s engaging our minds and spirits these days.

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March 10, 2017

Courtney Martin on the questions we learned to be afraid to ask, and how our quest for the answers shapes our lives moving forward.

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March 4, 2017

Monotasking as a social skill? Discovering new truths in our winter years? Essential readings on new approaches to life with each other, and with our ever-evolving selves.

A child with microcephaly receives aquatic physiotherapy treatment with a doctor in Recife, Brazil.
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March 3, 2017

It can feel painful to reflect on our mortality — especially the mortality of our loved ones. But maybe embracing the reality of death can help us to fear it less, and appreciate the wonder of life all the more.

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February 28, 2017

Parker looks fondly on the moments he spent as a child with his grandfather — whose life-giving hands brought forth craft and nurtured a little boy into the world with a fierce and stoic tenderness.

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February 24, 2017

Courtney offers up a fear- and judgment-free space, and draws forth the perspectives of women who don’t have kids, by choice or otherwise.

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February 21, 2017

What if we considered our nation not as factions at war, but as members of a strained and troubled family? A look through the lens of the three stories that broken families tell — and what that marginalized, third story reveals about the echo chambers we’ve been called to step out of.

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February 17, 2017

Whether to have children is one of the most life-defining decisions we will make. And there is joy and meaning to be found on either path — as well as endless challenges and frustration. Courtney Martin on why the best place to turn for guidance is inward.

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February 13, 2017

The stories we tell about love and life are the root of dreams and frustration, alike. Sharon Salzberg on how “unstitching and reweaving” the narratives we hold can lead to a more generous understanding of our relationships, and ourselves.

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February 9, 2017

A Muslim man reflects on the pain of citizenship in this moment and the fragile hope he holds from the nation he and his loved ones call home.

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February 7, 2017

A writer turns away from what’s toxic on social media and chooses self-care in this cultural moment.

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January 27, 2017

Courtney shares the practical insight of a wise elder — on the tumultuous history we’ve lived through, and the work we must do to shape our future differently.

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January 7, 2017

In the light of a New Year’s sparkler, a metaphor for the illuminating capacity we hold within, despite our fleeting existence.

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January 6, 2017

A lesson on trusting on trusting our gut about the lives we’re called to lead, and the unexpected ways that might manifest.

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December 23, 2016

Paul Elie navigates the winding path of Advent, and finds quiet ways to start anew in the meeting of ritual and the rhythms of everyday life.

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December 20, 2016

The twilight season of Advent reveals a quiet source of hope — in the rhythms of the earth and the instinctual embrace of darkness by our animal bodies.

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December 16, 2016

A brush with that fleeting, transcendent gratitude that only comes when we stand on the edge of losing what we treasure most.

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December 9, 2016

When going about our business, could we pay more attention to what we’re leaving behind for others in our wake?

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December 8, 2016

Sometimes the refuge we need is not an escape, but a safe place to grapple with our hardest questions, and to challenge ourselves to be better.

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