Community is hard. But have you ever noticed how the hardest things are often the most rewarding?
Most of our moral passion for justice and outrage at equality stems from a belief that all people are created equal. But that belief makes no sense without God, as Yuval Harari makes clear.
The atrocities in Westminster, Manchester and London Bridge are the latest examples in a list of heartache that spans human history. At times like these it feels reasonable to ask if God has left us, or was he ever even there?
Books and blogs are constantly offering us the seductive and powerful promise of a more productive life: the end of procrastination, frustration, and incompetence. But our hunger to find out the perfect productivity system reveals something more profound going on in our hearts.
Unemployment sounds great in theory. Imagine pyjama days every day, no alarm clock jackhammering into your mornings, and time to re-evaluate your entire life priorities whilst catching up on Loose Women. Except, as I recently discovered, it also forces you into deep crisis. Say hello to frozen pizzas and a blossoming relationship with your recruitment agent.
There are many ways in which the gender divide still wounds women: from unequal pay to the prohibitive cost of childcare, from unshatterable glass ceilings to unrealistic expectations of beauty, performance and achievement. We may say we value women equally, but in reality there are still many disparities to be overcome, both practically and in our own thought processes. So, how can I know who I am as a woman? Is there a rest from this treadmill?
Why have we seen an explosion in self-improvement literature in recent years? If increased ambition and our tendency to compare ourselves are behind this trend, where does this leave us? How do we cope with being increasingly dissatisfied with ourselves?
Whitney Houston was shot from small-town obscurity to worldwide fame, all apparently on a ticket to self-dependence. However, after years of abusive relationships, drugs and a failing voice she finally reached a point where she had to throw her hands up and admit that her methods weren’t working. What, or rather who, was she missing?
Are we ever truly honest about why we choose to reject and believe certain things? Either way, how do we stop our prejudices getting in the way of what’s ultimately true?