I Never Liked Pets…

I Never Liked Pets… I have an admission to make: When I was younger, I didn’t like pets. Actually, nobody owned pet dogs or cats when I was a child in my poor immigrant neighborhood. Dogs were considered frivolous or dangerous, and were expensive. The feral cats in the local alleys seemed furtive and weird, […]

Wrestling with Religion and Spirituality

Wrestling with Religion and Spirituality As a practicing psychiatrist, I am often confronted by dramatic examples of life’s “bipolar” vicissitudes.” I am not referring to the diagnosis as much as to the dramatic range of affect-laden situations and moods, ranging from loss and tragedy to love and exultation. Whether searching, or in despair or celebration, […]

Donald Trump and The Dalai Lama

“Donald Trump and The Dalai Lama” While they are two remarkably different men, “The Donald (Trump)” and “The Dalai (Lama)” are both immersed in international fame as well as controversy. Frequently seen on television, newspapers and social media, they each have the distinction of being vigorously admired and criticized. They are revered by millions of […]

I Am A “Real Parent”!

I Am A “Real Parent”! Parental pride in their children is universal, even if one is not from Lake Wobegon (where “all the children are above average”), and as a biological parent of three sons, I too have always considered them to be wonderful. It’s natural to praise the “products” of our personal DNA and […]

Magical Machu Picchu, and the Vexing ‘Human Condition’

I recently visited remarkable Machu Picchu, the ancient and magically beautiful Andes mountain community constructed some 500 years ago for the leader of the then-thriving Incan Empire. Many exquisitely preserved walls of buildings still stand in this breath-taking setting atop the steep slopes of the Peruvian Andes. The entire site is ethereal, evoking feelings of awe […]