One Size Fits All

I’m in LA, on my way to SF. Just did a number of interviews for strange things. An ABC special on the anniversary of 9/11, and a Fox News interview about my AOL piece, below.

I suppose news people are just like us book writers. They use interview subjects to mouth the things they really want to say, anyway. No crime, for sure, but you wonder why bother to use interview subjects at all if you’re just going to make them say (either through creative questioning or creative edtiing) the thing that you would really like to say, yourself. I do the same thing to the characters in my books – but at least they’re characters. I made them that way.

Meanwhile, I’m on my way up to Esalen, where I’m going to co-teach a seminar on religion and spirituality. Basically, we’re going to explore the advantages of pursuing a single path for a while – even while recognizing its only one of many equally true paths. I’m interested these days in how to balance the persistence of particularism with the openess of universalism. I’ve come to see the real benefit of sticking with a particular path, even when it kicks up some obstacles – and I fear too many people use such obstacles as an excuse to try something different. When it’s these little – or big – blocks that end up yielding so much terrific fruit.

On the other hand, sometimes people’s determination to make a path work allows them to justify some truly outlandish or even dangerous beliefs. You can justify a whole lot if you just put your head down and BELIEVE. I know what it’s like to recontextualize something beyond what it deserves. So it’s a delicate balance. Somewhere between neurosis and a personality disorder, if you know what I mean. Or between paranoia and narcissism.

More soon. I promise to update more regularly.