Morality Since the 1980s there has been a growing division
between private morality and public policy. While people
may be scrupulous about their conduct in their private
capacity, they are embarrassed to use the vocabulary of
morals when it comes to public life. This...
Viki-vik2 Who are your family? If you think the answer's
obvious, you may groan at reports that Pete Docter, director
of Up, dedicated his Oscar to 'the Pixar family' and his
wife and kids. I groaned, then checked my fattest
dictionary, and found...
Thank-you One of the differences between religious and
secular lives is that in the former, one says thank you all
the time: when eating, going to bed, waking up etc.
Why does the secular world tend not to say thank you? At...
Falling dominos You and I have almost certainly never met,
but what happens to you matters to me your health, your
happiness and your wealth and vice versa. Mutuality rather
than independence is the chief characteristic of human life,
whatever we'd like to...
H For centuries, the pursuit of happiness has been
paralleled by the pursuit of the definition of happiness.
From Aristotle through Jean-Jacques Rousseau, John Stuart
Mill and right up to Gretchen Ruben's recent Happiness
Project in America, brains have been switched on to...
Perspective 4 Modern life is an amazing deal. If you make it
to this time tomorrow you'll have gained, for free, another
five hours, by just turning up for life. Yet this huge
achievement, the ever-increasing life expectancy, comes with
scary, unintended consequences: loneliness,...
One of the more embarrassing and self-indulgent challenges
of our time is how we can relearn to concentrate. The past
decade has seen an unparalleled assault on our capacity to
fix our minds steadily on anything. To sit still and think,
without succumbing to...
Blue Modern working life means our jobs are less about
what we work at, and more about the people we work with.
Tasks have been subsumed by relationships. However important
the skills are that you have mastered to do your job...
2683153576_79b285ca19 In my teens I believed fashion was
about following herds, and style about rising above
them. As that superannuated teenager, Quentin Crisp, put
it, 'Fashion is what you adopt when you don't know who you
are.' My 'look' was lots of...
Melancholy lane 1
It's February. Christmas is a distant memory, the days are
still short, the Easter break's a long way off, and there's
plenty of winter to come. An urban myth says that most
suicides take place at this time of...
As February 14th looms ever nearer, we are compelled to
ponder love in all its forms. The *love of beasts* is a
subject we bibliotherapists feel doesn't get enough press.
This Valentine's Day, find an animal to love. As George
Eliot said, 'animals are...