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Posts tagged "Mental Health"


Another Week Ends: Go Cubs Go!, Cormac McCarthy, Dead Mothers, Email Tics, Teen Depression, and the Church of McDonalds

1. Lots of Cubs love to be had this week. First, if you didn’t see the incredibly sweet line up of grandma and grandpa reactions on NPR this week, go there first. And then there’s Bill Murray, at it again, giving a free Game Six ticket to a stranger from Indiana. And it was a […]

The Narcissist In Your Life

In her booklength essay on narcissism, Kristin Dombek enumerates the varieties of Narcissisms that plague the world order these days. There’s the Narcissistic Leader, whose ego runs the office you work for, the Collective Narcissist whose group or tribe is the best in the world, the Sexual Narcissist whose libidinal prowess must always be tested […]

Walker Percy’s Two Classes of Maniacs

As the Mental Health Issue is coming together, it is becoming quite apparent that one of our chief navigators in the strange land of the human mind will be the one and only Walker Percy. This passage comes from his wildly original and heartwarming novel, The Second Coming. It is a portion of a letter written by the […]

Condemned By Illness to Passivity

This amazing passage from Frank Lake’s Clinical Theology is perhaps the best reading of Mark 2 ever written. As we prepare for the Mental Health Issue, it has much to say about Christ’s office being (quite literally here) at the end of our rope. And that pastoral care–in every facet, from simple friendship to hospital chaplaincy–does […]

Empathy for the Deserving: The Morgellons Dilemma

Leslie Jamison’s book of essays, called The Empathy Exams, has a lot to say to about the reaches (and limits) of human love and compassion in their modern expression. The second essay in the collection, called “Devil’s Bait,” is about a group of sufferers who share a rare, controversial illness called Morgellons Disease. With Morgellons, […]

Thou Shalt Never Feel Bad: Inside Out for the Ivy League

Sadness is having a cultural moment, and that makes me happy. Much of this is thanks to Pixar’s Inside Out, that rare film which deserves all the success and acclaim being heaped upon it. There are any number of reasons to laud the movie, as DP pointed out a couple weeks ago. Its artistic merits […]

Does The “Age of Anxiety” Ever End?

I’ve been a rather anxious person for most of my short (thus far) life. I was anxious about grades while in middle school, I was anxious about getting into college while in high school, and I was anxious about getting a job while a senior in college. Today, I’m anxious about an ever-lengthening “to-do” list […]

Romancing Depression (Or Not)

The past few years have brought us a rash of popular studies in evolutionary biology and psychology that seek to assign redemptive purposes to negative emotions such as anxiety, anger and depression. An upside, if you will, such as increased problem-solving skills. Clinicians have, by and large, expressed considerable skepticism about these findings, decrying the […]

Another Week Ends: Achievement Freaks, St. Jobs, Luxury Disorders, Von Trier’s Obstructions, Self-Made Religion, Boardwalk Empire, and Lactivism

1. As if we needed another reminder of the frightening heights the achievement curve has reached in recent years, James Atlas attempted to trace the cultural and economic forces contributing to the ‘excellence glut’ in his NY Times op-ed last week, “Meet the New Super People.” Atlas seems less interested in the psychological (and spiritual!) […]