a life between worlds
Samuel Loncar, Ph.D. (Yale University) is helping heal the divide between mind and matter that has sundered wisdom and spirituality from science and technology. A philosopher and scholar of religion, poet, and writer, he works at the intersection of the ancient and the modern. He has taught at Yale university and offers workshops, consultations, and classes on philosophy, religion, and technology. As the Editor and Publisher of the Marginalia Review of Books and the Founder of the Lyceum, he blends scholarly and creative concerns and helps people ask and answer life’s largest questions.
Born in Athens, Greece, his ancestors’ diverse origins give him global roots: in Okinawa, Japan, among the Chippewa (or Ojibwe) people, and in Eastern Europe, and motivate his mission to unite tradition and innovation.
His writing has been read at Google, taught in classes and universities across the world, and translated into Chinese and Farsi. As a consultant and speaker, his client list includes the United Nations, Oliver Wyman, and Redbull Arts.
God and the Cosmos
Trinity Wall St. Retreat Center
9-11 August 2019
Paradise Lost: Milton and the Theological Origins of Modernity (w. Brad Holden)
Private Lyceum Seminar, 6 week course
The Poetry of Thought: Poetry, Philosophy, & Art
Lyceum Seminar, Limited Enrollment (Inquire for Details)
Fall 2019, 10 week course
In all my work I look for connections between separated spaces that need each other's wisdom. My projects orbit around a few big questions, all concerned with what it means to be human in an era dominated by technology and globalization.
What is the relationship between science, religion, poetry, and technology?
Are humans capable of possessing awareness of and control over the whole earth without destroying it?
How can philosophy catalyze new communities and institutions and recover its true past as a union of spirituality and science?
These are huge questions, raising the specter of modernity as the bringer of material benefits but killer of spiritual reality. Yet precisely this narrative has played easily, and horribly, into the hands of the worst reactionary forces of our times. Can we take the problems modernity poses for human life seriously, while affirming and defending its unique and hopefully irreversible benefits? Doing so is the goal of my work. It starts with big questions, but it can’t end there.
Education embodies our ideal of humanity, and it is the means by which we become ourselves. When we have forgotten who we are, or no longer agree as a culture, we cannot educate. Education requires clarity about what we believe humans are, for education is the process of becoming human. Our confusion has led us to conflate schooling, job-training, and certification with education. For a democracy to flourish, its citizens must be offered the skills needed to participate fully in economic and civil life. That is a demand of the common good, a requisite of our republic.
But training is different than education. Schooling stops at a certain age; degrees end and are restricted to those with the power to pay. True education ends when we do; it is a life-long process and should not be restricted to the privileged and elite.
Humans are philosophers, destined to achieve the freedom to understand themselves and determine the kind of person they wish to become. Philosophy is a way of life, not an academic discipline; philosophers are a species, homo sapiens, not a professional class. Education is thus a philosophical enterprise. The wisdom required for living life well comes from seeing the whole, yet how is the possible today? My answer: the Lyceum.