• How great, Amanda. I’m so glad these ideas were helpful to your students and that it made the beginning of the year more enjoyable for all! I’m actually working on expanding this content right now and would really appreciate hearing some of your students’ specific examples if possible. My email is phillip.e.johnston [at] gmail [dot] com if you…[Read more]

  • Thanks for your insightful comment, Emily! The “slow and deliberate” thing is particularly difficult. We want the result of things done slowly and deliberately, but we are very rarely willing to do them ourselves. I was speaking to a friend on Sunday who regularly frequents a BBQ establishment here in Nashville. He recently realized that nothing…[Read more]

  • Phillip Johnston changed their profile picture 3 years, 4 months ago

  • When it comes to information, humanity has been playing a vast game of Tetris for thousands of years. New blocks of information are constantly being formed as we acquire new knowledge. As we encounter them, our […]

    • Thanks for your insightful comment, Emily! The “slow and deliberate” thing is particularly difficult. We want the result of things done slowly and deliberately, but we are very rarely willing to do them ourselves. I was speaking to a friend on Sunday who regularly frequents a BBQ establishment here in Nashville. He recently realized that nothing was stopping him from taking up smoking meats and making sauces himself. It’s become an immensely satisfying thing for him and a great delight to his friends. Sure, he could buy BBQ for all of them at the restaurant, but the slow and deliberate attentiveness of preparation expresses love on a deeper level than takeout. I think trying to discern situations like this in our lives – i.e. Where can I replace “fast and easy” with “slow and deliberate”? – is key to becoming a more loving friend and neighbor.

    • Thanks for putting the thought and care into writing this article. I couldn’t agree more, and was convicted by your last several paragraphs.
      “In the attention economy, these deceptively simple acts of paying attention to the things that matter most are acts of resistance. They are the essential first steps to becoming a better lover.”
      That’s great stuff.

    • How great, Amanda. I’m so glad these ideas were helpful to your students and that it made the beginning of the year more enjoyable for all! I’m actually working on expanding this content right now and would really appreciate hearing some of your students’ specific examples if possible. My email is phillip.e.johnston [at] gmail [dot] com if you have the time.

  • You’re welcome, Julie – and I’m so glad you found the article helpful. I hope the decision making process is going well for you and you’re husband, and that you’re on the way to finding a different freedom than perhaps you expected.

  • You’re welcome, Janka. I was thinking more about hope as a virtue recently after reading a book of letters written by Stanley Hauerwas to his godson. He has this to say: “We need each other because we cannot hope alone. We learn to hope by trusting others who have learned to hope by doing the same. Optimism is the attitude of those who isolate…[Read more]

  • In the blissfully bucolic English village where I found myself living a few years ago, there were only two reasonable sources for takeout when my workday went long. On the low end was the fish and chips counter, […]

    • You’re welcome, Janka. I was thinking more about hope as a virtue recently after reading a book of letters written by Stanley Hauerwas to his godson. He has this to say: “We need each other because we cannot hope alone. We learn to hope by trusting others who have learned to hope by doing the same. Optimism is the attitude of those who isolate themselves from others, while hope is the virtue that takes pleasure in our need for others. It’s often true that the imagination—on which hope depends, and which hope makes possible—also makes possible my discovery that I need others. For friends make my life rich with possibilities that I otherwise couldn’t imagine.”

      I love that final line. Friendship is a form that enables us to hope, a form with so many generous possibilities.

    • Phillip, this article came at just the right moment for my husband and me! We need to make some changes in a few different areas of life, and we had become overwhelmed by choices; everything seemed like a genuine possibility. I especially found the concept of accepting a particular “form” as a doorway to freedom. Thank you for putting some complex concepts into easily-understood images–food and fish! 🙂

    • You’re welcome, Julie – and I’m so glad you found the article helpful. I hope the decision making process is going well for you and you’re husband, and that you’re on the way to finding a different freedom than perhaps you expected.

    • i wonder if this is the way to stop freaking out about what and how i will teach my girl this fall. Or this week.

  • Phillip Johnston's profile was updated 3 years, 8 months ago

  • Phillip Johnston changed their profile picture 3 years, 8 months ago

  • Phillip Johnston changed their profile picture 3 years, 8 months ago