Adam Blatner

Words and Images from the Mind of Adam Blatner

January, 2008

Subtle Oppressions (I): Role Overload

There’s a rather unpleasant yet widespread story that if a frog is put into hot water it will jump out, but if put into cold water and the water is very gradually heated, the frog won’t notice until it dies of hyperthermia (i.e., too high temperature for life). I don’t know that this is even […]

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Another Way to Think About “Divination”

I mentioned my meeting with Rowena Kryder yesterday in another post (an astonishingly insightful holistic thinker), and another idea I got from her was a different way of thinking about divination. She said: “Divination is of course one of the oldest and profound methods of humans finding truth. “To divine” is to reach the eternal […]

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Exploring Patterns

I met a fascinating wise woman yesterday (i.e., Rowena Kryder) who helped me see that my drawings are really explorations of pattern. They are certainly not mere doodling, or even cartooning, which implies a bit more story, or comic humor. They are more tentative than fine art; closer to sketches, but more abstract. We talked […]

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On “Scient-ism”

In chatting with friends, the theme of “scientism” came up—an interesting term, referring to the tendency to attribute to science virtuous qualities that it has neither claimed or properly earned. While science uses methods that ultimately require the employment of the senses and be replicable, this approach cannot address a wide variety of very relative […]

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Reflecting on over 35 years as a psychiatrist, I think that at least half of the problems people have psychologically are due not to the quirks of their own minds or the particulars of their family makeup, but rather that they (1) believe the common (non-)sense ideas of their culture, following a host of social […]

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Hell: A Helluva Concept

Speaking from the role of child psychiatrist, I think the concept of hell is a form of emotional abuse no less than beating a child with the buckle of a belt or a stick is physical abuse. It is a nasty, unnecessary idea that is part of a culture that reared children primarily through the […]

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About the Fear of Death and Speculations on “the Afterlife”

Someone read this blog and asked me what I thought about the fear of dying and theories of the afterlife. I don’t know much, but I enjoy thinking, so here are some thoughts: I think a lot of the fear of death comes from the fear communicated to young children by parents and others who […]

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Adam’s Photo (try again)

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The Dynamics of Sociopathy

One of the most difficult-to-treat conditions is the personality disorder called “sociopathy” or “psychopathy”—the kind of “con man” who rips people off, and often the confirmed criminal. I was corresponding with a colleague in England who works with such problems and shared with her some ideas about some of the dynamics I think go on […]

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An Interview with Adam about Creativity Here’s an interview with me—about a half-hour or so—made in 2006 at an American Creativity Conference that helps the listener: (1) Appreciate some philosophical ideas that offer an intellectual foundation for many more practical efforts; (2) Relate these, if one chooses–but it’s not necessary–to a contemporary view of spirituality; (3) Relate these, also to […]

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