September 25, 1989 |
The room was quiet but for the muffled sound of shuffling feet, as aides scurried about and others craned their necks for a better view. The Dalai Lama, 54, spiritual leader of the world's six million Tibetans, sat yesterday on a simple wooden chair in the center of a Buddhist shrine, hidden among the Pohatcong Mountains of northwest New Jersey. He is a small man with thin arms and a ready smile, comfortable discussing the rebellion in China or the rainbow that graced Saturday's evening skies.
January 7, 2011
THANK YOU, Jenice Armstrong, for your enlightening column on Kwanzaa. Contrary to the numerous misunderstandings about the holiday's significance, many families and church communities throughout our nation do observe the seven principles or "nguzo saba. " In that spirit, here is my prayer for the new year: 1. For the unity (umoja) of the human spirit that transcends race, culture, religious and political affiliations. 2. For self-determination (kujichagulia) cultivating a strong sense of individual pride and integrity.
October 11, 1995 |
Pope John Paul II challenges the widespread notion that international affairs is a realm of amorality in which interests alone are in play. The Pope is emerging as the world's premier defender of the idea that there is a nobility to the human person and prospect. It is not an easy case to make at the end of a century of slaughter, tyranny and unfathomable human suffering. Having fought the Nazi and communist occupations of his homeland, the Pope is no naive optimist. But he is, as he said at the United Nations last week, a "witness to hope.
April 20, 2007
Dear South Korea: Please stop apologizing. It is not your fault. Don't get us wrong. It is touching and impressive how you, as a nation, seem crestfallen over the trail of death left on an American college campus by an immigrant from your land. You have held candlelight vigils at our embassy and your president has expressed shock - three times, so far. But, really, the suspect came to America as a child. He was raised here. Maybe we should be apologizing to you for not taking better care of him. Or maybe the ugly twists that the human spirit can take are just unfathomable.
November 13, 1990 |
The totalitarian's dream, Orwell's nightmare, has long been that the persuasive apparatus of modern technology would enable governments to keep their grip on power forever. The fall of communism has engendered the confident belief that this is impossible: Technique cannot win over the human spirit. Recent trends in American elections are enough to make one reconsider. The collapse of communism may have less to do with the human spirit than with faulty advertising. The lesson of last Tuesday's election is that remaining in power has indeed become a mere matter of technique for incumbent politicians, a form of engineering in which success can be achieved with near scientific certainty.
April 8, 1998 |
"I try to choose projects that emphasize the human spirit . . . If I were handed a superb 'Booty Call' that explores the human spirit, maybe . . . -" "Homicide" star Andre Braugher, on why he hasn't done much comedy The good news: Elizabeth Taylor won't have to make that courtesy call to Neverland and coo over the latest progeny of Michael Jackson. The bad news: She won't be going anywhere, for a while. Taylor, citing doctor's orders, issued a statement yesterday saying she's canceled all her upcoming engagements to stay home and rest for a good four months.
November 17, 2006 |
American men, at least some of us, have always wanted to stay part boy. That's why men at 40, 50 and 60, though relatively sane, keep playing games - basketball, softball, running, triathlon, biking, tennis, golf. Such men will be among the 15,000 running the Philadelphia Marathon on Sunday, testing the remains of youth at the expense of their bodies - arthritic knees and hips, painful backs, strained Achilles tendons. These guys still want the morning sun to shine on their marathon or 10K run, on their jump shot, their backhand, their breakaway on the bike.
January 11, 2004 |
Following a year of tragedy and disappointment, the success of the Spirit robotic spacecraft on Mars is a crucial confidence-builder for the U.S. space program. For most of society, this isn't enough. We want to go. Manned space exploration satisfies a basic human drive to engage in exploration in a way no other activity does in today's world. The international popularity of the Star Trek movies suggests the universal appeal to "to boldly go where no one has gone before. " Indeed, the drive to explore is an important characteristic of the human nervous system; awareness of new physical frontiers is essential to the health of humanity.
March 21, 2006 |
The next time someone asks your opinion of embryonic-stem-cell research, take a long, hard look at the face of a child - your own child, a child whom you love, any child. Look deeply and intently into their young eyes and think about who and what they are to you. Reflect on what makes them so special and irreplaceable. Then imagine yourself putting a gun to their head and pulling the trigger because that's what embryonic-stem-cell research ultimately does - kill a special, irreplaceable child.
February 16, 2005 |
It has often struck me as unfair that era after era should lose its giant thinkers and achievers. We just lost Arthur Miller, author of Death of a Salesman and The Crucible. He helped us understand the tragedy of failure and the dignity of every individual. What a loss he is. People who bring discovery, intelligence, happiness, grace, or just plain joy to others should live for all time. . . . live, I might add, at or near full strength. I want Einstein in his mid-20s, which is what he was 100 years ago, 1905, his annus mirabilis.