On Being Podcast

On Being takes up the big questions of meaning with scientists and theologians, artists and teachers — some you know and others you’ll love to meet. Each week a new discovery about the immensity of our lives — updated every Thursday. Hosted by Krista Tippett. Discover more at onbeing.org. On Being Studios is the producer of On Being, Becoming Wise, Creating Our Own Lives, and more to come.

[Unedited] Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn with Krista Tippett

Béla Fleck is one of the greatest living banjo players in the world. He’s followed what many experience as this quintessential American roots instrument back to its roots in Africa, and he’s taken ...

Feb-21-2019

Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn — Truth, Beauty, Banjo


Béla Fleck and Abigail Washburn — Truth, Beauty, Banjo

Béla Fleck is one of the greatest living banjo players in the world. He’s followed what many experience as this quintessential American roots instrument back to its roots in Africa, and he’s taken ...

Feb-21-2019

[Unedited] Richard Davidson with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Richard Davidson with Krista Tippett

Neuroscientist Richard Davidson is one of the central people who’s helped us begin to see inside our brains. His work has illuminated the rich interplay between things we saw as separate not that l...

Feb-14-2019

Richard Davidson — A Neuroscientist on Love and Learning


Richard Davidson —  A Neuroscientist on Love and Learning

Neuroscientist Richard Davidson is one of the central people who’s helped us begin to see inside our brains. His work has illuminated the rich interplay between things we saw as separate not that l...

Feb-14-2019

Maria Popova — Cartographer of Meaning in a Digital Age


Maria Popova — Cartographer of Meaning in a Digital Age

She has called Brain Pickings, her invention and labor of love, a “human-powered discovery engine for interestingness.” What Maria Popova really delivers, to hundreds of thousands of people each da...

Feb-07-2019

[Unedited] Maria Popova with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Maria Popova with Krista Tippett

She has called Brain Pickings, her invention and labor of love, a “human-powered discovery engine for interestingness.” What Maria Popova really delivers, to hundreds of thousands of people each da...

Feb-07-2019

[Unedited] Daniel Kahneman with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Daniel Kahneman with Krista Tippett

With his book “Thinking, Fast and Slow,” Daniel Kahneman emerged as one of the most intriguing voices on the complexity of human thought and behavior. He is a psychologist who won the Nobel Prize i...

Jan-31-2019

Daniel Kahneman — Why We Contradict Ourselves and Confound Each Other


Daniel Kahneman — Why We Contradict Ourselves and Confound Each Other

With his book “Thinking, Fast and Slow,” Daniel Kahneman emerged as one of the most intriguing voices on the complexity of human thought and behavior. He is a psychologist who won the Nobel Prize i...

Jan-31-2019

[Unedited] Glennon Doyle and Abby Wambach with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Glennon Doyle and Abby Wambach with Krista Tippett

The topic of the day was “courage,” with two singular, admired women (who happen to be married to each other): soccer icon Abby Wambach and writer/philanthropist Glennon Doyle. Abby is an Olympic g...

Jan-24-2019

Glennon Doyle and Abby Wambach — Un-becoming


Glennon Doyle and Abby Wambach — Un-becoming

The topic of the day was “courage,” with two singular, admired women (who happen to be married to each other): soccer icon Abby Wambach and writer/philanthropist Glennon Doyle. Abby is an Olympic g...

Jan-24-2019

Mary Oliver — Listening to the World


Mary Oliver — Listening to the World

Mary Oliver was one of our greatest and most beloved poets. She is often quoted by people across ages and backgrounds — and it’s fitting, since she described poetry as a sacred community ritual. “W...

Jan-17-2019

[Unedited] Mary Oliver with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Mary Oliver with Krista Tippett

Mary Oliver was one of our greatest and most beloved poets. She is often quoted by people across ages and backgrounds — and it’s fitting, since she described poetry as a sacred community ritual. “W...

Jan-17-2019

[Unedited] Claudia Rankine with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Claudia Rankine with Krista Tippett

The poet, essayist, and playwright Claudia Rankine says every conversation about race doesn’t need to be about racism. But she says all of us — and especially white people — need to find a way to t...

Jan-10-2019

Claudia Rankine — How Can I Say This So We Can Stay in This Car Together?


Claudia Rankine — How Can I Say This So We Can Stay in This Car Together?

The poet, essayist, and playwright Claudia Rankine says every conversation about race doesn’t need to be about racism. But she says all of us — and especially white people — need to find a way to t...

Jan-10-2019

[Unedited] Maira Kalman with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Maira Kalman with Krista Tippett

To be in conversation with Maira Kalman is like wandering into one of her cartoons in The New Yorker. Millions have been prompted to smile and think by her illustrated revision of Strunk and White’...

Jan-03-2019

Maira Kalman — Daily Things to Fall in Love With


Maira Kalman — Daily Things to Fall in Love With

Writer and illustrator Maira Kalman is well known for her books for children and adults, her love of dogs, and her “New Yorker” covers. Her words and pictures bring life’s intrinsic quirkiness and ...

Jan-03-2019

David Whyte — The Conversational Nature of Reality


David Whyte — The Conversational Nature of Reality

The poet-philosopher. To ask beautiful questions in unbeautiful moments. “Your great mistake is to act the drama / as if you were alone.” Rest as the conversation between what we love to do and how...

Dec-27-2018

[Unedited] David Whyte with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] David Whyte with Krista Tippett

The poet-philosopher. To ask beautiful questions in unbeautiful moments. “Your great mistake is to act the drama / as if you were alone.” Rest as the conversation between what we love to do and how...

Dec-27-2018

[Unedited] Walter Brueggemann with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Walter Brueggemann with Krista Tippett

The great scholar and preacher. “Reframing so that we can re-experience the social realities that are right in front of us, from a different angle.” The disarming use of language. “A society finall...

Dec-20-2018

Walter Brueggemann — The Prophetic Imagination


Walter Brueggemann — The Prophetic Imagination

The great scholar and preacher. “The task is reframing so that we can re-experience the social realities that are right in front of us, from a different angle.” Prophets are also always poets. “A s...

Dec-20-2018

[Unedited] Pauline Boss with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Pauline Boss with Krista Tippett

The family therapist who created the field of “ambiguous loss” — loss without closure. Complicated grief: parents, divorce, addiction, dementia, aging. “You love somebody. And when they’re lost, yo...

Dec-13-2018

Pauline Boss — The Myth of Closure


Pauline Boss — The Myth of Closure

The family therapist who created the field of “ambiguous loss” — loss without closure. Complicated grief: parents, divorce, addiction, dementia, aging. “You love somebody. And when they’re lost, yo...

Dec-13-2018

[Unedited] Rebecca Traister and Avi Klein with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Rebecca Traister and Avi Klein with Krista Tippett

The feminist journalist and the psychotherapist. “It’s partners and lovers and spouses…fathers and brothers and sons and friends.” The difference between apology and forgiveness. “Men are used to t...

Dec-06-2018

Rebecca Traister and Avi Klein — #MeToo Through a Solutions Lens


Rebecca Traister and Avi Klein — #MeToo Through a Solutions Lens

The feminist journalist and the psychotherapist. “It’s partners and lovers and spouses…fathers and brothers and sons and friends.” The difference between apology and forgiveness. “Men are used to t...

Dec-06-2018

Living the Questions: What does civility actually mean, and is it enough?


Living the Questions: What does civility actually mean, and is it enough?

A question from Kevin: “I have been hearing a lot of deconstruction of the word ‘civility.’ The debate around this word has become, like so many other things, binary. ‘Civility’ is either a tool of...

Dec-03-2018

[Unedited] Pico Iyer with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Pico Iyer with Krista Tippett

Absorption as a definition of happiness. “To bring that calm into the motion, the commotion of the world.” Traveling not in order to move around but in order to be moved. His friend Leonard Cohen. ...

Nov-29-2018

Pico Iyer — The Urgency of Slowing Down


Pico Iyer — The Urgency of Slowing Down

Absorption as a definition of happiness. “To bring that calm into the motion, the commotion of the world.” Traveling not in order to move around but in order to be moved. His friend Leonard Cohen. ...

Nov-29-2018

Rachel Naomi Remen — The Difference Between Fixing and Healing


Rachel Naomi Remen — The Difference Between Fixing and Healing

The wise physician and lyrical author. How our losses actually help us to live. Perfection as the booby prize in life. “Wholeness is never lost, it is only forgotten.” “Stories are the flesh we put...

Nov-22-2018

[Unedited] Rachel Naomi Remen with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Rachel Naomi Remen with Krista Tippett

The wise physician and lyrical author. How our losses actually help us to live. Perfection as the booby prize in life. “Wholeness is never lost, it is only forgotten.” “Stories are the flesh we put...

Nov-22-2018

[Unedited] Anand Giridharadas with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Anand Giridharadas with Krista Tippett

We Americans revere the creation of wealth. Anand Giridharadas wants us to examine this and how it shapes our life together. This is a challenging conversation but a generative one: about the impli...

Nov-15-2018

Anand Giridharadas — When the Market Is Our Only Language


Anand Giridharadas — When the Market Is Our Only Language

We Americans revere the creation of wealth. Anand Giridharadas wants us to examine this and how it shapes our life together. This is a challenging conversation but a generative one: about the impli...

Nov-15-2018

[Unedited] James Doty with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] James Doty with Krista Tippett

A brain surgeon. “The brain is one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen.” The science of compassion. The baggage of evolution. The two way street of “neural innovation that comes from the ...

Nov-08-2018

James Doty — The Magic Shop of the Brain


James Doty — The Magic Shop of the Brain

A brain surgeon. “The brain is one of the most beautiful things I have ever seen.” The science of compassion. The baggage of evolution. The two way street of “neural innovation that comes from the ...

Nov-08-2018

Tracy K. Smith — love is a language / Few practice, but all, or near all speak


Tracy K. Smith — love is a language / Few practice, but all, or near all speak

The U.S. Poet Laureate. “There’s this whole other narrative unfolding.” How history “which once felt so remote, feels closer and active and unresolved.” Listening for the spaces that are under-imag...

Nov-01-2018

[Unedited] Tracy K. Smith with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Tracy K. Smith with Krista Tippett

The U.S. Poet Laureate. “There’s this whole other narrative unfolding.” How history “which once felt so remote, feels closer and active and unresolved.” Listening for the spaces that are under-imag...

Nov-01-2018

Mirabai Bush — Contemplation, Life, and Work


Mirabai Bush — Contemplation, Life, and Work

Co-creator of the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society. “There is a calming, quieting, centering practice that leads to insight in every tradition.” Contemplative practice and social change. Mi...

Oct-25-2018

[Unedited] Mirabai Bush with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Mirabai Bush with Krista Tippett

Co-creator of the Center for Contemplative Mind in Society. “There is a calming, quieting, centering practice that leads to insight in every tradition.” Contemplative practice and social change. Mi...

Oct-25-2018

Arlie Hochschild — The Deep Stories of Our Time


Arlie Hochschild — The Deep Stories of Our Time

A creator of the field of the sociology of emotion. Treating emotion seriously in our life together. “I could see what they couldn’t see but not what I couldn’t see.” Our stories as “felt” not mere...

Oct-18-2018

[Unedited] Arlie Hochschild with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Arlie Hochschild with Krista Tippett

A creator of the field of the sociology of emotion. Treating emotion seriously in our life together. “I could see what they couldn’t see but not what I couldn’t see.” Our stories as “felt” not mere...

Oct-18-2018

David Whyte — Poetry from the On Being Gathering (Closing Words)


David Whyte — Poetry from the On Being Gathering (Closing Words)

“The sense of having walked from far inside yourself / out into the revelation, to have risked yourself / for something that seemed to stand both inside you / and far beyond you, that called you ba...

Oct-15-2018

Sally Kohn and Erick Erickson — Relationship Across Rupture


Sally Kohn and Erick Erickson — Relationship Across Rupture

What happens when you call your Internet trolls. The peril of forgetting our next door neighbors. “You don’t have to love people to not hate them.”

“People believe things that are mutually contradi...

Oct-11-2018

[Unedited] Sally Kohn and Erick Erickson with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Sally Kohn and Erick Erickson with Krista Tippett

“People believe things that are mutually contradictory; I think we all do. I know I do.” — Erick Erickson

Earlier this year, the University of Montana invited On Being to attempt an outside the box...

Oct-11-2018

Living the Questions: Can conversation make any difference at a moment like this?


Living the Questions: Can conversation make any difference at a moment like this?

“Conversation is not just about words passing between mouths and ears. It’s about shared life. Listening is about bringing our lives into conversation.”

About the Living the Questions series, from ...

Oct-08-2018

Layli Long Soldier — The Freedom of Real Apologies


Layli Long Soldier — The Freedom of Real Apologies

The Oglala Lakota poet. “I wanted as much as possible to avoid this nostalgic portraiture of a Native life.” The reward and joy of patience. The difference between guilt, shame, and freedom from de...

Oct-04-2018

[Unedited] Layli Long Soldier with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Layli Long Soldier with Krista Tippett

The Oglala Lakota poet. “I wanted as much as possible to avoid this nostalgic portraiture of a Native life.” The reward and joy of patience. The difference between guilt, shame, and freedom from de...

Oct-04-2018

Poetry From the On Being Gathering — John Paul Lederach


Poetry From the On Being Gathering — John Paul Lederach

A series of haikus from peacemaker John Paul Lederach on the fourth day of our On Being Gathering.

This year, we were thrilled to host our very first On Being Gathering — a four-day coming-together...

Oct-01-2018

Frances Kissling — What Is Good in the Position of the Other


Frances Kissling — What Is Good in the Position of the Other

From abortion activist to bridge person. Questions to break out of intractable polarization. Wisdom beyond the news cycle. “What is it in your own position that gives you trouble? What is it in the...

Sep-27-2018

[Unedited] Frances Kissling with Krista Tippett


[Unedited] Frances Kissling with Krista Tippett

From abortion activist to bridge person. Questions to break out of intractable polarization. Wisdom beyond the news cycle. “What is it in your own position that gives you trouble? What is it in the...

Sep-27-2018

Poetry From the On Being Gathering — Marilyn Nelson


Poetry From the On Being Gathering — Marilyn Nelson

A morning of poetry with Marilyn Nelson from the third day of our On Being Gathering.

This year, we were thrilled to host our very first On Being Gathering — a four-day coming-together of the On Be...

Sep-24-2018

Seth Godin — Life, the Internet, and Everything


Seth Godin — Life, the Internet, and Everything

“We are flying too low. We built this universe, this technology, these connections, this society, and all we can do with it is make junk? All we can do with it is put on stupid entertainments? I’m ...

Sep-20-2018