On Being

On Being is a conversation about the big questions at the center of human life, from the boldest new science of the human brain to the most ancient traditions of the human spirit.

Recent Episodes

[Unedited] Lawrence Kushner with Krista Tippett

[Unedited] Lawrence Kushner with Krista TippettThis unedited interview with Rabbi Lawrence Kushner comes from our produced show "Kabbalah and the Inner Life of God."

The Jewish mystical tradition of Kabbalah is a rich, magnetic world of thought and teaching. It has resonance with modern understandings of reality — and describes a cosmic significance to the practical moral call to tikkun olam, "repair the world." Rabbi Lawrence Kushner is a long-time student and articulator of the mysteries and messages of Kabbalah. We speak with him in honor of the 20th-century historian Gershom Scholem, who resurrected this tradition from obscurity and made it accessible to modern people.

See more at www.onbeing.org/program/lawrence-kushner-kabbalah-and-the-inner-life-of-god/6309

Maria Tatar — The Great Cauldron of Story: Why Fairy Tales Are for Adults Again [remix]

Maria Tatar — The Great Cauldron of Story: Why Fairy Tales Are for Adults Again

Fairy tales don't only belong to the domain of childhood. Their overt themes are threaded throughout hit TV series like Game of Thrones and True Blood, Grimm and Once Upon a Time. These stories survive, says Maria Tatar, by adapting across cultures and history. They are carriers of the plots we endlessly re-work in the narratives of our lives — helping us work through things like fear and hope.


[Unedited] Maria Tatar with Krista Tippett

[Unedited] Maria Tatar with Krista Tippett This is Krista Tippett's unedited, unabridged interview with Maria Tatar. Fairy tales don't only belong to the domain of childhood. Their overt themes are threaded throughout hit TV series like Game of Thrones and True Blood, Grimm and Once Upon a Time. These stories survive, says Maria Tatar, by adapting across cultures and history. They are carriers of the plots we endlessly re-work in the narratives of our lives — helping us work through things like fear and hope.

Leonard Mlodinow — Randomness and Choice

Leonard Mlodinow — Randomness and Choice

Fundamental forces of physics somehow determine everything that happens, as physicist Leonard Mlodinow has written, “from the birth of a child to the birth of a galaxy.” Yet he has intriguing perspective on the gap between theory and reality — and the fascinating interplay between a life in science and life in the world. As the child of two Holocaust survivors, he asks questions about our capacity to create our lives, while reflecting on extreme human cruelty — and courage.


[Unedited] Leonard Mlodinow with Krista Tippett

[Unedited] Leonard Mlodinow with Krista TippettThis unedited conversation with physicist and author Leonard Mlodinow comes from our produced show "Leonard Mlodinow — Randomness and Choice."

Fundamental forces of physics somehow determine everything that happens, as physicist Leonard Mlodinow has written, “from the birth of a child to the birth of a galaxy.” Yet he has intriguing perspective on the gap between theory and reality — and the fascinating interplay between a life in science and life in the world. As the child of two Holocaust survivors, he asks questions about our capacity to create our lives, while reflecting on extreme human cruelty — and courage.

See more at www.onbeing.org/program/leonard-mlodinow-randomness-and-choice/6295

Jaroslav Pelikan — The Need for Creeds [remix]

Jaroslav Pelikan — The Need for Creeds

The idea of reciting an unchanging creed sounds suspicious to modern ears. But the late, great historian Jaroslav Pelikan illuminated ancient tradition in order to enliven faith in the present and the future. He insisted that strong statements of belief will be necessary if pluralism in the 21st century is to thrive. We take in his moving, provocative perspective on our enduring need for creeds.