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Monthly Archives: July 2014

Bill Porter Q & A

A brief New York Times interview with Bill Porter, author of Road to Heaven: Encounters with Chinese Hermits and the most recent book Yellow River Odyssey. For decades, Porter had been an indigent translator and commentator of ancient Chinese texts, but now that his books (chiefly about historical China and conversations with people he encounters […]

Bernard Wheatley, M.D., Hawaii hermit

The story of Bernard Wheatley (1919-1991) is notable because he was a black American and a physician, but left his career and contacts to move to Hawaii and become a hermit. He cited Jesus and Buddha as his main inspirations, but other psychological motives underlie his decision to quit society and live in solitude. Wheatley’s […]

“Walking, Silence”

Last year, 22 year old Greg Hindy embarked on a solitary year-long walk across the United States from his native New Hampshire to California, in silence. His journey is described in a Boston Globe article, which links to Greg’s website and Facebook pages maintained by his supportive father. The trek is an expression of performance […]

Pain versus mind

Many web sources are reporting this news item concerning students in a psychology experiment at the University of Virginia. In a version from ScienceAlert of Australia/New Zealand, the article is titled and subtitled: “People prefer electric shocks to quality alone time: Scientists reveal that being left alone with your thoughts is deeply unpleasant.” The Washington […]