Don Morgenson

Don Morgenson

Articles by Don Morgenson

Graphic by Fani Hsieh

Sadness can draw out people’s creative side

An extensive study of British artists and writers revealed that highly creative people often suffer from a mood disorder. The data confirmed what letters, diaries and biographical accounts of well-known poets, artists and composers reveal — creative people tend to experience extremes of mood, which in turn, fuels the creative process. Little remains of the creative products of melancholia: that […]

by Don Morgenson· · Opinion ·
Photo by Alex Trkulja

The “fear of missing out” prevents us from experiencing the real world

One of my students, a bright and engaged student, came to see me because she was troubled: she was addicted to her many electronic gadgets. The first thing she does upon waking is reach for her smartphone, checking texts that might have come during the night. She then lights up Facebook to see what’s trending; then it’s Snapchat, Tumblr, Twitter […]

by Don Morgenson· · Opinion ·
Shedding light on idealism

Shedding light on idealism

Idealism has a very bad press. Idealism is seen as innocence ignoring great moral evil, naiveté allowing wickedness. Idealism is seen simply as an empty vessel. We slouch toward cynicism as we view the general state of our world, with unfortunate good reason. The only antidote for such cynicism is to re-affirm our goal of sticking with or of returning […]

by Don Morgenson· · Opinion ·
Photo by Kira Gelbard

University: An investment in the power of ideas

Philosopher Alfred North Whitehead wrote in his book, The Aims of Education, “. . . and the gift which the university has to offer all students is the very old one of imagination.” Yet, I do wonder occasionally whether or not formal education just might have the opposite effect, namely a stunting of the precious imagination. Consider for a moment […]

by Don Morgenson· · Opinion ·
Contributed Image

Maybe the devil made me do it

Empathy vs. cruelty: evaluating Philip Zimbardo’s 1971 Stanford Prison Experiment, intended to assess the psychological implications of institutional systems within criminal imprisonment

by Don Morgenson· · Opinion ·
Gun violence: a public health issue?

Gun violence: a public health issue?

Contributed Image Daily, threats of nuclear war, bio-terrorism, Ebola and other diseases are very real in our world, but most Americans are apparently unaware of another disease of epidemic proportions. This epidemic is firearms and guns that have aspects which make a disease metaphor appropriate. Accepting this fact, the United States Center for Disease Control collected vital data regarding gun […]

by Don Morgenson· · Opinion ·
No need to ‘keep up with the Joneses’

No need to ‘keep up with the Joneses’

Graphic by Fani Hseih “Keeping up with the Joneses” — what a supremely evocative saying, suggesting many different meanings.  Does the “keeping up” suggest struggling with an equilibrium, such as the status quo? But the status quo continues to advance because those infernal Joneses keep moving up ahead of you and me. The fact we even care about “keeping up” […]

by Don Morgenson· · Opinion ·
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Recounting the wisdom of Dostoevsky

Unraveling the philosophies of an iconic Russian novelist and how his words can help our lives

by Don Morgenson· · Opinion ·
Contributed Photo

The unfortunate truths of children lost in poverty

In response to the alarming infant-mortality rate, the New York Foundling Hospital opened in 1869, and is one of the oldest social service agencies in North America. It was then designed to address the needs of women in poverty. We do hope that we are today a gentler and more caring society but the truth is that here in 2015, […]

by Don Morgenson· · Opinion ·