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Posted inCulture

Learning to love our messy activism: A podcast on quinoa

Reading Time: 4 minutes There’s the world we want to live in, and there’s the world we have. In many conversations here on OnlySky, I’ve noticed that one of the biggest mental blocks in activist discourse is our frustration that people won’t think or do differently right now. Why should we cater to their ignorance, or their obstinacy? There’s […]

Posted inPsychology

Remember their whole life, not just their final hours

Reading Time: 4 minutes This entire column, not just this entry, contains a content warning. I will be writing about suicide, depression, post-traumatic stress, and other serious topics. If you are having suicidal thoughts, please reach out to someone you trust, establish care with a therapist, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (800-273-8255), or go to your nearest emergency […]

Posted inPsychology

When therapists push religion

Reading Time: 8 minutes Leaving religion can be a very challenging undertaking, particularly in the US, and especially in communities outside of large urban centers, where unbelief is rarely the norm. Given the often daunting psychological challenges that can accompany the task of deconverting, psychiatric help can be very important. But despite what one might expect and hope for, […]

Posted inPsychology

Solving the musical mystery of my life

Reading Time: 3 minutes Ever since I was a wee babe, one song always made me spontaneously burst into tears: “Wiegenlied,” better known as Brahms’s Lullaby: For at least the first 20 years of my life, just a few notes of Brahms’s Lullaby would draw a convulsive wet snurk from my face. My brothers would miss no opportunity. In the […]

Posted inPsychology

Autism and the tendencies of belief

Reading Time: 4 minutes I can’t say for sure where my tendencies towards depression and extreme emotional responses to change first came; my grandmother has dealt with the same in her life, as well as the compulsive need to take a look at charities and noble causes. I know mental issues like this can be heritable to the point […]

Posted inPsychology

Life lessons from Beethoven: Chasing numbness away with music

Reading Time: 4 minutes This entire column, not just this entry, contains a content warning. I will be writing about suicide, depression, post-traumatic stress, and other serious topics. If you are having suicidal thoughts, please reach out to someone you trust, establish care with a therapist, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (800-273-8255), or go to your nearest emergency […]

Posted inPsychology

Dissent and the power of two

Reading Time: 6 minutes “Guess what happened today.” When your eighth-grade daughter offers up details of the day uncoerced, drop everything. “I give up.” “I was at the table in the cafeteria with these three other kids, and two of them asked the other girl where she went to church. She said ‘We don’t go to church,’ and their […]

Posted inPsychology

Vladimir Putin as the ultimate authoritarian leader

Reading Time: 7 minutes Recently, Elon Musk challenged Vladimir Putin to single combat–with the winner taking Ukraine. It was a dumb joke, for all that Musk claimed to be “absolutely serious” about it. But it caught my attention because the person he challenged happens to be one of the biggest authoritarians on the planet. That kind of challenge means something to an authoritarian that a non-authoritarian doesn’t quite understand.