Who are we?

Question: Who are we?

Peter Gomes: Well the trajectory that I see that persists, and that has been present from the very beginning, is the trajectory of curiosity, of desire, and the search for value and meaning. And I think we’ve all been caught up in that. We all want to make sense of where we are. We want where we are to be betterwere, and we want to be better than we were. There is a fundamental, moral question at the heart of our identity. And I think that has been the common search. All religions have tried to come up with answers to this – a way to frame these questions intelligently and with some system to them. But I think if there’s anything that defines us as human beings is this desire for not simply clarity and understanding. I think we have this desire for meaning, value and purpose. That’s what drives humankind. And if we can’t find it in the things that are around us, we make them up! We invent things. We create things that help us do this. And that … I think as long as there are human beings, that will always be a part of who we are. Thus I think religion is unavoidable and ineradicable. It is a part of the human DNA. We are spiritual. We are spiritually seekers. than where we

Recorded on: 6/12/07

We are driven by a search for value and meaning.

Lama Rod Owens – the price of the ticket to freedom

An ordained Lama in a Tibetan Buddhist lineage, Lama Rod grew up a queer, black male within the black Christian church in the American south. Navigating all of these intersecting, evolving identities has led him to a life's work based on compassion for self and others.

Think Again Podcasts
  • "What I'm interested in is deep, systematic change. What I understand now is that real change doesn't happen until change on the inside begins to happen."
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For most of history, humans got smarter. That's now reversing.

We were gaining three IQ points per decade for many, many years. Now, that's going backward. Could this explain some of our choices lately?

The Flynn effect appears to be in retrograde. (Credit: Shutterstock/Big Think)
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There's a new study out of Norway that indicates our—well, technically, their—IQs are shrinking, to the tune of about seven IQ points per generation.

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Lateral thinking: The reason you’ve heard of Nintendo and Marvel

Here's why generalists triumph over specialists in the new era of innovation.

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