“Go, be confined inside your house!” Pandemic parallels stretch back as far as the sixth century BCE, when even the prophets Ezekiel and Jeremiah were restricted to their homes during their ministry.
Apocalyptabuse, or How to Survive “The End”
Call this fantasized thinking apocalyptabuse: the demoralizing mythic-psychic warfare that deprives people of hope, makes us fear that The End is near, and thereby cuts off our aspirations of any earthly life to come.
It’s the End and Nothing Feels Fine
I don’t use the word “apocalypse” or “apocalyptic” lightly. I’m a scholar of bad endings. And the pandemic that we face right now feels like it could be a very bad ending.
I thought: What would the rabbis say about the giant inflatable colon? As a colon cancer survivor, will I ever see shit as just shit again?
Et Tu, Almonds? On Guilt and Eating
Meanwhile I forgive you, my beloved almonds, for not being harmless; I am not harmless either.
This Way to the Gas Chambers, Ladies and Gentlemen (Auschwitz 2003)
It occurred to me that one is always imagining how one could live in Auschwitz. But almost everyone died in Auschwitz.
Getting to the Good Place
Can moral philosophy get Eleanor, Chidi, Jason, and Tahani to the Good Place, or do we need to talk, first, about salvation?
Dream State in Sturgis Library
The story threads written so long ago still tied us to the world out there, like spider silk unspooling across the moat.
Why do some of us have to witness and bear the destruction of a world—a destruction that we did not make?
In the home I grew up in, we consider all books sacred. When someone accidentally drops a book or grazes one with a foot, we place our hand on the cover and gently touch our closed eyelids.
Blossoms (Hadeish Yameinu)
How do I reclaim a holiday of liberation when I feel like I’ve spent the last year entrapped by a frightening cloud of uncertainty?