Tag Archives: William James

May 14

Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Call for Originality: Philosophy Is Not A Luxury Podcast Episode 1:

I am very happy to offer you the first episode of the new Philosophy Is Not a Luxury Podcast. In this episode I introduce the intention behind starting the podcast and introduce the thinking of Ralph Waldo Emerson by discussing a passage from his book Nature first published in 1836. TO LISTEN USE THIS AUDIO […]

March 18

The Heart of the Mystic

A mystic is one who sees the deeper reality that lies hidden beneath our ordinary experience of reality. The mystic looks deeply into the nature of things by letting go of conventional wisdom and allowing their awareness to roam beyond the safety of the familiar. The mystic has tasted something that lies under the surface […]

November 13

Thinking is NOT something you do!

In the decade of the 1880’s two daringly original thinkers, working on opposite sides of the Atlantic Ocean, both recognized that reality was built upon a foundation of pure experience. One was William James who spent all ten years of that decade completing his master work The Principles of Psychology that was published in 1890. […]

March 21

William James, The Stream of Consciousness and Freewill

William James was trained as a medical doctor at Harvard University and became generally recognized as the first psychologist in America and his first and arguably most significant written work was “The Principles of Psychology” published in 1889. James’s later philosophical work always retained a certain tendency toward the psychological and many of his core ideas […]

January 26

Everything Exists in Relationship

Things do not exist unless they exist in relationship with something else. In fact, things do not exist at all. Relationships exist. There are no individual things. The existence of anything is always contingent upon something else. When I was an undergraduate student I studied physics, but my favorite course in four years was one […]

December 21

Contact, Concept and Art

We live in a reality constructed of contact and concept. The world reveals itself to us in a stream of sensation. We see colors, shapes, lines, shades of light and dark. We hear sounds shrill and bass, harmonious and discordant. Our skin touches cold and heat, hard and soft, rough and smooth. Scent passes constantly […]

November 30

Meditate into Deep Trust

Many of my most profound spiritual awakenings have come to me through the practice of meditation. And although I haven’t written about that topic on this blog, I do see it as a spiritual discipline that is central to philosophy in that at its core the practice of meditation involves making direct contact with reality. […]

The Voices in Our Heads: Staying on the Inside of Awareness

In this series of posts I am using the metaphor of “staying on the inside” to explore the common human experience of isolation and fragmentation and also some possible solutions for it. We have all developed…or inherited…a habit of looking at our lives and our selves from the outside-in. We watch ourselves living, as much […]

This Is It: Staying on the Inside of Life

How much time do we spend preparing for a moment other than the one we are in? How many hours are passed in critique of what we are doing rather than doing it? These are interesting questions especially when we are considering the phrase ‘staying on the inside’ in relationship to our human experience. In […]

Staying on the Inside – Unifying the Self with Reality

We live in fractured times. Our experience of reality and ourselves often seems to be dominated by a sense of isolation and separation. In the cannon of philosophy this sense of division is often spoken about as a product of The Western Enlightenment.The Enlightenment’s monumental leap forward in consciousness was in large part a movement […]