Before You Can Be With Others First Learn to Be Alone

In 1840, Edgar Allan Poe described the ‘mad energy’ of an ageing man who roved the streets of London from dusk till dawn. His excruciating despair could be temporarily relieved only by immersing himself in a tumultuous throng of city-dwellers. ‘He refuses to be alone,’ Poe wrote. He ‘is the type and the genius of deep crime … He is the man of the crowd.’

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Aeon's picture

Aeon is a digital magazine of ideas and culture. Since September 2012 they have been publishing some of the most profound and provocative thinking on the web. They ask the big questions and find the freshest, most original answers, provided by leading thinkers on science, philosophy, society, and the arts. Aeon was founded in London by Paul and Brigid Hains. It now has offices in London, Melbourne, and New York. Aeon is a not-for-profit and operated by Aeon Media Group Ltd., committed to big ideas, serious enquiry, and a humane worldview. That’s it.

Do We Have an Instinctive Urge to be Kind?

When someone needs help, what is your first impulse?

Has “ethics [become] a luxury as the speed of our daily lives increases”?

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Greater Good Science Center's picture

This article originally appeared on Greater Good, the online magazine of the Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley.

The Greater Good Science Center studies the psychology, sociology, and neuroscience of well-being, and teaches skills that foster a thriving, resilient, and compassionate society.

Based at the University of California, Berkeley, the GGSC is unique in its commitment to both science and practice: Not only do we sponsor groundbreaking scientific research into social and emotional well-being, we help people apply this research to their personal and professional lives. Since 2001, we have been at the fore of a new scientific movement to explore the roots of happy and compassionate individuals, strong social bonds, and altruistic behavior—the science of a meaningful life. And we have been without peer in our award-winning efforts to translate and disseminate this science to the public.

How to Take Care of Our Veterans

There comes a time when a country has to debate when, if, and whether it should go to war. When it eventually happens, and the war is on, some men and women put their lives on the line to protect the integrity of the country by serving in the military. Talking of war, the United States has had a fair share of the same, since the founding of the nation through rebellion.

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Jim Hughes's picture

Jim Hughes is a content marketer who has significant experience covering technology, finance, economics, and business topics for about 3 years. He likes to share all the insight and knowledge he has. 

Royal Watching for Inspiration

I’m always fascinated by the frenzy of following every movement or breath of famous folks.

Royal Watching has become quite the national and international pastime and ramps up to a frenzy when the family members of Britain’s Queen get married or bring a new baby into the world.

We tune in or pick up the grocery store checkout line mags to assess (criticize?) dresses and clothes and baby pictures and pronouncements. Are we comparing ourselves? Fantasizing what it must be like to be royalty? Waiting for some weird schadenfreude moment when someone trips and falls?

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Andrew Mersmann's picture

Andrew is the author of Frommer's global guide to volunteer vacations, "500 Places Where You Can Make a Difference" (Gold Medal Winner from Society of American Travel Writers: Best Guide Book 2010). He spent more than a decade on the editorial team of PASSPORT Magazine. He has volunteered and led teams on service projects around the world, and is honored to be on the boards of directors for the Alisa Ann Ruch Burn Foundation (AARBF.org) and Mentor Artists Playwrights Project (mentorartists.org). Mersmann has been a featured speaker, interview guest, or moderator on several travel talks, from the New York Times Travel Show, Smithsonian Associates, and the 92nd Street Y-TriBeCa to Oprah and Friends, Animal House, and The Focus Group on satellite radio as well as on NY1 television. Past participant at the Clinton Global Initiative and judge for Condé Nast World Changers Conference, he blogs about volunteering and service travel at www.ChangeByDoing.com. As part of the evox television team, he is dedicated to audience engagement, so if you're not engaged, he needs to be thumped on the head (gently)...or at least told (nicely). Twitter: /ChangeByDoing

Your Start to a Safer Community

Creating a Safer Community

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Jade Pulman's picture

Jade is a full-time mother of three children she adores. She graduated with her bachelors degree in Family Studies and Nutrition and works hard to implement her learning into her family life. When not writing, you can find her in the outdoors or exploring museums and aquariums with her loving husband and children. 

Beyond Originality and Creativity: Perspectives on the Elements of Art

One of the most fundamental aspects of aesthetics is to make you see, hear, feel, touch, and smell something that makes you know and sense you are fully alive.

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Henry Cross's picture

Henry Cross grew up in sunny Miami, Florida. Upon graduating high school, he moved to the politicized Washington, D.C. and double majored in History and Politics at the Catholic University. He served as a social studies teacher in Prince George’s County Public School in 2008-2009. In the fall of 2009, he moved to New York City to continue and grow his work in education and service.

He joined Hosh Yoga in 2011 as a teacher and Program Director. And since 2013, he founded and expanded programming for the organization with Hosh Kids and Hosh Seniors. Henry's entrepreneurial spirit helped developed the organizational, program, and financial capacity of the nonprofit to deliver self-sustaining and self-supporting health and wellness services to over 3,000 children, adults, and seniors every month in a cost-effective and fairly-priced way. And from 2014 to 2016, he participated in a philanthropic role by expanding the programming, policy, and public advocacy efforts of the Sonima Foundation as Community Relations Director.

His work has been featured by the Huffington PostElephant JournalBlog Talk RadioThe NYC Social Innovation FestivalSocial Venture Institute, and multiple Brooklyn and Queens newspapers. He is an appointed New York City official of Community Board 5 in Queens, serves on a Department of Youth and Community Development Neighborhood Advisory Board, and on the board of directors of the Ridgewood Property Owners and Civic Association. And in 2015, Henry was selected as an etsy.org business fellow and awarded Top 40 Under 40 Nonprofit Rising Star. He finds joy in his community work service everyday and loves ballroom dancing!

Creating Community

The power of community to create health is far greater than any physician, clinic, or hospital. ~Mark Hyman

Over the five years I lived with my Mom’s cancer diagnosis, I became very skilled at “creating community.”  i.e., reaching out to people to tell the truth about how I was feeling and asking for support. It wasn’t easy at first, but it got easier and easier as time went on.

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Jen Coken's picture

Jen Coken is an author, life coach, and comedian who wants to live in a world where you’re free to be yourself and achieve your soul’s purpose—a vision that has driven her work as a Coach, Speaker, Author, Comedian for more than 20 years.

Drawing on three decades of experience as a non-profit leader and grassroots organizer, Jen helps CEOs and entrepreneurs overcome their self-made limitations and do their heart’s work.

But Jen’s impact doesn’t end there: She spent six years on the Denver stand-up comedy circuit and brings a sense of humor to every topic she addresses, including the experience of coping with her mother's diagnosis and death from ovarian cancer.

Jen’s book, "When I Die, Take My Panties: Turning Your Darkest Moments into Your Greatest Gifts" chronicles that experience and shares Jen’s core message that everything that comes our way is meant to teach us about ourselves.

When she’s not crafting bestselling books or speaking to audiences around the country, you can find Jen eating Nutella by the spoonful in the nearest grocery aisle. www.jencoken.com

Acting Like an Extravert Has Benefits, But Not for Introverts

For decades, personality psychologists have noticed a striking, consistent pattern: extraverts are happier more of the time than introverts.

For anyone interested in promoting wellbeing, this has raised the question of whether it might be beneficial to encourage people to act more extraverted. Evidence to date has suggested it might.

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About The Author

Aeon's picture

Aeon is a digital magazine of ideas and culture. Since September 2012 they have been publishing some of the most profound and provocative thinking on the web. They ask the big questions and find the freshest, most original answers, provided by leading thinkers on science, philosophy, society, and the arts. Aeon was founded in London by Paul and Brigid Hains. It now has offices in London, Melbourne, and New York. Aeon is a not-for-profit and operated by Aeon Media Group Ltd., committed to big ideas, serious enquiry, and a humane worldview. That’s it.

No Middle Ground for Deep Disagreements About Facts

Consider how one should respond to a simple case of disagreement.

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About The Author

Aeon's picture

Aeon is a digital magazine of ideas and culture. Since September 2012 they have been publishing some of the most profound and provocative thinking on the web. They ask the big questions and find the freshest, most original answers, provided by leading thinkers on science, philosophy, society, and the arts. Aeon was founded in London by Paul and Brigid Hains. It now has offices in London, Melbourne, and New York. Aeon is a not-for-profit and operated by Aeon Media Group Ltd., committed to big ideas, serious enquiry, and a humane worldview. That’s it.

Keep On Rockin In the Real World

I grew up in the eighties. My folks moved from NY to Los Angeles and settled into the comfort of a big house, two-car garage, and three kids. We were never in want for money. My dad made millions as the vice president of a huge construction firm. I was raised to believe that there was no limit to what I could attain. The milieu of my childhood is best exemplified by a t-shirt that hung in my dad’s closet, and would sometimes be bandied around for laughs, it read: “He who dies with the most toys wins.”

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J. Brown's picture

J. Brown is a yoga teacher, writer, and founder of Abhyasa Yoga Center in Brooklyn, NY.  His writing has been featured in Yoga Therapy Today, the International Journal of Yoga Therapy, and across the yoga blogosphere. Visit his website at jbrownyoga.com

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Man sitting on ground facing sunset
04/03/2020
In 1840, Edgar Allan Poe described the ‘mad energy’ of an ageing man who roved the streets of London from dusk till dawn. His excruciating despair could be temporarily relieved only by immersing... read more
Shelter dog being pet through a cage
01/08/2020
When someone needs help, what is your first impulse? Has “ethics [become] a luxury as the speed of our daily lives increases”? This is one of the implications that John M. Darley and C. Daniel... read more
Silhouette of soldier saluting huge American flag.
10/30/2019
There comes a time when a country has to debate when, if, and whether it should go to war. When it eventually happens, and the war is on, some men and women put their lives on the line to protect the... read more
Prince Harry and Meghan
09/26/2019
I’m always fascinated by the frenzy of following every movement or breath of famous folks. Royal Watching has become quite the national and international pastime and ramps up to a frenzy when the... read more
Golden sunlit neighborhood with dog in street.
06/19/2019
Creating a Safer Community With the amount of crime going on today, it is imperative to ensure that you and your family stay safe. The moment when you don't even feel secure in your own home is... read more
Young man looks at statue busts in museum
04/24/2019
One of the most fundamental aspects of aesthetics is to make you see, hear, feel, touch, and smell something that makes you know and sense you are fully alive. But what are the elements that... read more
A woman hiking in mountains reaches back to help another
04/01/2019
The power of community to create health is far greater than any physician, clinic, or hospital. ~Mark Hyman Over the five years I lived with my Mom’s cancer diagnosis, I became very skilled at... read more
Laughing woman sprays unamused man with Silly String
12/20/2018
For decades, personality psychologists have noticed a striking, consistent pattern: extraverts are happier more of the time than introverts. For anyone interested in promoting wellbeing, this has... read more
Two tigers fighting and swiping at each other.
11/15/2018
Consider how one should respond to a simple case of disagreement. Frank sees a bird in the garden and believes it’s a finch. Standing beside him, Gita sees the same bird, but she’s confident it’s... read more

Pages

Man sitting on ground facing sunset
04/03/2020
In 1840, Edgar Allan Poe described the ‘mad energy’ of an ageing man who roved the streets of London from dusk till dawn. His excruciating despair could be temporarily relieved only by immersing... read more
Shelter dog being pet through a cage
01/08/2020
When someone needs help, what is your first impulse? Has “ethics [become] a luxury as the speed of our daily lives increases”? This is one of the implications that John M. Darley and C. Daniel... read more
Silhouette of soldier saluting huge American flag.
10/30/2019
There comes a time when a country has to debate when, if, and whether it should go to war. When it eventually happens, and the war is on, some men and women put their lives on the line to protect the... read more
Prince Harry and Meghan
09/26/2019
I’m always fascinated by the frenzy of following every movement or breath of famous folks. Royal Watching has become quite the national and international pastime and ramps up to a frenzy when the... read more
Golden sunlit neighborhood with dog in street.
06/19/2019
Creating a Safer Community With the amount of crime going on today, it is imperative to ensure that you and your family stay safe. The moment when you don't even feel secure in your own home is... read more
Young man looks at statue busts in museum
04/24/2019
One of the most fundamental aspects of aesthetics is to make you see, hear, feel, touch, and smell something that makes you know and sense you are fully alive. But what are the elements that... read more
A woman hiking in mountains reaches back to help another
04/01/2019
The power of community to create health is far greater than any physician, clinic, or hospital. ~Mark Hyman Over the five years I lived with my Mom’s cancer diagnosis, I became very skilled at... read more
Laughing woman sprays unamused man with Silly String
12/20/2018
For decades, personality psychologists have noticed a striking, consistent pattern: extraverts are happier more of the time than introverts. For anyone interested in promoting wellbeing, this has... read more
Two tigers fighting and swiping at each other.
11/15/2018
Consider how one should respond to a simple case of disagreement. Frank sees a bird in the garden and believes it’s a finch. Standing beside him, Gita sees the same bird, but she’s confident it’s... read more

Pages