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We talk with Amherst College professor Thomas Dumm about LONELINESS AS A WAY OF LIFE (Harvard 2008). And environmental educator and Buddhist Stephanie Kaza tells us how to go MINDFULLY GREEN (Shambhala 2008).
When Thomas Dumm‘s wife died after a long struggle with cancer, his grief from the loss of a shared life with her moved him to contemplate the nature of loneliness as a fixture of the human condition. In LONELINESS AS A WAY OF LIFE, Dunn looks at four domains of loneliness: Being, Having, Loving, and Grieving. He goes to literature and philosophy to find clues to the constituent elements of his subject. And he takes us on his own personal journey through the land of the alone to arrive at a means of exit, not through sentimental nostrums, but by counseling our own responsibilty for making connections.
Witnessing the unfolding disaster of our ecological crisis can be a lonely burden to carry. And our loneliness also keeps us from being able to do anything about it. Now environmental educator and meditator Stephanie Kaza has stepped in to lead us on the “green practice path.” She offers a simple, Buddhist-inspired philosophy for taking up environmental action in ways that overcome our separation from ourselves, each and our world. Her book is Mindfully Green: A Personal and Spiritual Guide to Whole Earth Thinking.