January 2020

What is the essence of a company?

Companies seem permanent – GE, Siemens, Ford, Nike, Apple, Four Seasons. But what are they really? A company is not a thing, like a shoe, for instance. If you take a shoe off, you can put it in the corner, and it will stay that way until it slowly degrades and, eventually, returns to dust. A company is less real than this: a business is just a pattern. Imagine that North America faced some devastating epidemic and civilization fell apart.… Read More »What is the essence of a company?

Eminem teaches us about the shadow side

One thing I haven’t read anywhere in reviews of rap is how it often draws on the ‘shadow side’ of our natures. The term ‘shadow side’ comes from Carl Jung. He described the shadow side as the part of who we are that we don’t acknowledge. Part of the the shadow side is made up of things that we push away because they are too difficult to deal with (our own anger, for example). Part of it is things that… Read More »Eminem teaches us about the shadow side

Basing your life around something good

The fundamental nature of being is good. At first glance, this doesn’t seem obviously true. There are a lot of bad things in the world: suffering, drudgery, malevolence. But to me this abstract point is the most important idea which ties everything together. It is the foundation of ethics and how to think about living well. Part of this idea comes from Christianity: God’s goodness runs in everything from exalted to the everyday. Jesus Christ is not just a perfect… Read More »Basing your life around something good

On building a better civilization

We all live in civilization, but what is it? Does civilization mean anything? I think it’s important to have a good answer to this, because so often in politics we are talking about what we dislike, what we are against and what we are trying to prevent. For example, we are trying to stop climate change from disrupting civilization. But if we focus our whole mind around stopping the bad thing, climate change, we don’t think about what we value… Read More »On building a better civilization