Writer & philosopher. PhD philosophy. Stories & ideas to make the world a better place. Next book Hello, Stranger (Granta 2021). Twitter @willbuckingham

PAST IS PROLOGUE

If we want to work better, first we need to think better

“The Seasons” by Pieter Brueghel the Elder from the Metropolitan Museum of Art online collection. Image: Public domain via Wikimedia Commons

Writing fiction is like making bread. You need to know when to knead it, and when to just let it rise.

Photo by Victor Rodríguez Iglesias on Unsplash

Myanmar helped me come to terms with grief. Now I am grieving for Myanmar.

Image of pagodas in Kayah State, Myanmar. Photograph by the author © Will Buckingham

The writer Lewis Hyde says that creative works are gifts. But the reverse is also true.

Norwegian Christmas Card. 1909. Public domain, library of Norway, via Wikimedia Commons.

Christmas is on the way, and you’re facing the biggest philosophical challenge of the year: what to get for a man like Uncle Pedro?

Coles Phillips. “Know all men by these presents.” Life Magazine, 1910. Public Domain via Wikimedia Commons.

The philosopher Chrysippus argued that emotions are not things that happen to us, but things we do.

Edvard Munch. Melancholy. From a series of paintings on the emotions. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons.

The philosopher who couldn’t hold his drink

Philosophy shows us that ritual has a powerful role to play in shaping ourselves — and the world.

The Geography Lesson, by J. G. Sowerby (1888). Public domain via Wikimedia Commons.

Ritual is Creative

For the philosopher Pyrrho of Elis, our search for ethical certainty leads only to turbulence. Perhaps we’d be better off just giving up.

Photo by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

Cultural connections

Will Buckingham

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