divinemagicianheader new
Why Atheists Need the Church

“Only theologians can be true atheists” Lacan I’ve recently been preparing for an online seminar I’m teaching with John Caputo at the GCAS, and one of the thinkers I’ve been brushing up on is the 19th century philosopher Ludwig Feuerbach. While he never achieved philosophical sainthood and missed becoming a canonical figure in Western thought, his ideas have Read More

God is (the) Real

March 03, 2014
God is (the) Real

On twitter I occasionally get asked what I think about the existence of God. It’s usually asked by someone who has a solid grasp of what the term “God” refers to, and they assume that it has the same meaning for everyone else. Hence there is confusion when I reply that I can’t answer in Read More

I had a Horrible Dream in which I Watched You Die

The philosopher Jean Paul Sartre’s view of freedom and responsibility can initially be difficult to grasp. His claim that we are radically free to choose different options at every given moment can sound like he’s saying there’s a part of us that can weigh up different situations and then make a decision concerning what to Read More

We Are Joined By Our Difference: Some Thoughts on the Eternal Honeymoon

I would like to do a brief reflection on the nature of loving relationships and the idea of the Eternal Honeymoon (influenced by a little Lacan). There is a ubiquitous fantasy, propagated across our culture, of a couple who are able to make each other whole, complete and fulfilled. Not surprisingly the stories that describe Read More

Only God Forgives: Discovering the mOther’s lack

**With Spoilers** A few nights ago I went to see Only God Forgives, written and directed by Nicolas Winding Refn. On the surface this is a highly stylized, disturbingly violent story of revenge. Yet even then it is anything but straightforward. Unlike most revenge movies, which are shot from the point of view of someone seeking Read More

Within religious circles the word “demonic” is generally used to describe something either actual or fictional. In the conservative/fundamentalist world demons are real beings who travel around the world creating mischief. On the other side people from the progressive/liberal tradition tend to think of demons and the demonic as terms that were used by pre-scientific Read More

At an event I curated recently the musician Duke Special performed a magical gig that moved us all deeply. One of the songs that particularly struck a cord with me was called, “Condition” (which I would recommend listening to while reading the rest of this post) The song itself captures something profoundly insightful about the human experience, an insight that I would like Read More

I Don’t Want You if You Are Not You

I once had the idea for a sci-fi short story about a scientist who was deeply in love with two women. Two woman who are, in turn, deeply in love with him. He is paralyzed by the choice; utterly unable to decide which woman he should actually commit himself to. In addition to this each Read More

How to hide a lie in the truth (via the Marx Brothers)

While exploring the inner workings of language the theorist Lacan once offered a fascinating and deep reflection on the tracks left by different animals. He noted that most animals simply leave tracks in their wake; tracks that can act as a sign that they have passed that way. As such a hunter can look at Read More

Escaping into reality

Dreaming can often offer us a wonderful escape from our daily life. Indeed it is well known that we can be so enamored with our dream-state that our mind can integrate external distractions in order to prolong it. Taking sounds and feelings that would otherwise wake us and finding a way of embedding them into Read More

I wish to offer two philosophical reflections on the subject of believing through the other. The first relates to the common situation in which someone who no longer has religious beliefs, or who is riven with doubts, lies to their parents: pretending that they still believe and attend church regularly. Knowing that revealing their true Read More