Skip to content

Essays

Essays

Anekāntvād: The Ancient Wisdom of an Open Mind

Do you know the story about the elephant and seven blind men? Each man stands next to a different part of the animal and is asked what he makes of it. The man touching the ear says it is a fan; the man by the tails thinks it's a rope;

Anekāntvād: The Ancient Wisdom of an Open Mind
Essays

Window Gazing

I love how when I'm looking out at the world through a glass pane, I know intuitively that it is all outside and, for now at least, "none of it depends on me". "Windows are, in (a) sense, a powerful existential tool: a patch of the world, arbitrarily framed, from

Window Gazing
Essays

Shadows as Things

Shadows get a bad rap. They are commonly considered evil, sinister, or at best inferior (who would ever want to live in somebody else’s shadow?). But give them a chance and you’ll discover that shadows are fascinating things. They are creative interpretations of the objects that block their

Shadows as Things
Essays

Unlikely Rainbows

Those big rainbows in the sky after a sun shower are actually pretty rare sightings. But smaller, everyday rainbows can be found in the most unlikely places. If only we pause to look. And, thanks to frequency illusion (technically known as the Baader-Meinhof Phenomenon) once you see one the chances

Unlikely Rainbows
Essays

Background Noise

When it comes to perception, we mostly focus on the object of our perception. This could be vision, hearing touch, taste, smell, or vestibular (that feeling of accelerating or decelerating). But like most things we experience, it’s all relative to the background or the context. For example, take the

Background Noise
Essays

What the Happiest Man In The World Sees

Nobody wakes up in the morning thinking: “May I suffer the whole day”. As the French philosopher, Pascal said, even the man who hangs himself is looking for a cessation of suffering.

What the Happiest Man In The World Sees
Essays

Noticing Strangers

Sonder. You are the main character—the protagonist—the star at the center of your own unfolding story. You’re surrounded by your supporting cast: friends and family hanging in your immediate orbit. Scattered a little further out, a network of acquaintances who drift in and out of contact over

Noticing Strangers
Essays

Wabi-Sabi in Photography

Wabi-sabi is a giant marketing effort that urges us to take a second look at what we might otherwise dismiss or treat with disdain.

Wabi-Sabi in Photography
Essays

Aimless Love

A poem by Billy Collins. This morning as I walked along the lakeshore, I fell in love with a wren and later in the day with a mouse the cat had dropped under the dining room table. In the shadows of an autumn evening, I fell for a seamstress still

Aimless Love
Essays

What Do We Find Beautiful?

A list of answers.Whether beauty is an objective or subjective reality is one of most controversial themes in the history of art and culture. Is beauty a special and measurable quality “out there”, or simply a twinkle in the “eye of the beholder”? Perhaps what we can all agree

What Do We Find Beautiful?