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Practically Idealistic blog
The title for this blog originated with use of the term “practical idealist” in this 1996 opinion piece, which asked: “To what kind of work should a practical idealist aspire?” A century and a half earlier, Emerson, in his 1841 essay Circles, wrote: “There are degrees in idealism.  We learn first to play with it academically. . . .  Then we see in the heyday of youth and poetry that it may be true, that it is true in gleams and fragments.  Then, its countenance waxes stern and grand, and we see that it must be true.  It now shows itself ethical and practical.”  John Dewey and Mahatma Gandhi embraced practical idealism in the 20th century, as did UN Secretary General U Thant.  Al Gore invoked it in a 1998 speech. In the context of this blog, the term is meant to convey idealism tempered but not overwhelmed by realism: a search for the ideal on a path guided by common sense.
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Sunday, August 12, 2012

From Hateful Violence to Interfaith Understanding

Amardeep Singh, who teaches English at Lehigh University, commented last week on both a New York Times blog and NPR about the abhorrent killings at a Sikh place of worship in Wisconsin.  Deep Singh is an American and a Sikh of Indian descent.  (He and his wife happen to be family friends, and he’s someone of eclectic interests and talents.  Deep was the DJ at my wedding years ago and was also DJ for at least one bhangra dance party at the GPSCY in New Haven.)

A September 2011 post, on the 10th anniversary of 9/11/o1, cited Eboo Patel and the Interfaith Youth Core.

7:34 am edt 

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Robert Burt on WNPR

Robert A. Burt and his book In the Whirlwind were featured in a recent rebroadcast of a Faith Middleton radio show on WNPR.  Robert Burt, who is a longtime member of the Yale Law School faculty and who has led several local and national seminars through the Yale-New Haven Teachers Institute, was mentioned in a December 2010 (December 26) blog post.

9:39 am edt 

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Parenting and Madeline Levine, Richard Weissbourd

Madeline Levine's New York Times opinion column  on “Raising Successful Children” is deservedly attracting attention.  This author of Teach Your Children Well: Parenting for Authentic Success addresses important questions.

In a November 2010 essay, I cited The Parents We Mean to Be, a 2009 book by Richard Weissbourd.  That book’s  subtitle is How Well-Intentioned Adults Undermine Children’s Moral and Emotional Development.  Anyone interested in Madeline Levine’s work should also consult Rick Weissbourd’s book.

8:33 am edt 

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