Follow by Email

Thursday, March 13, 2014

David Brooks, "The Deepest Self": People Are Like Onions

"Onions have layers. Ogres have layers. Onions have layers. You get it? We both have layers."

- Shrek, "Shrek" (2001)

As Putin masses troops along Russia's border with the Ukraine, David Brooks is here to reassure us concerning the substance of human nature in his latest New York Times op-ed entitled "The Deepest Self" ( . Brooks writes:

"In fact, while we are animals, we have much higher opportunities. While we start with and are influenced by evolutionary forces, people also have the chance to make themselves deep in a way not explicable in strictly evolutionary terms.

So much of what we call depth is built through freely chosen suffering. People make commitments — to a nation, faith, calling or loved ones — and endure the sacrifices those commitments demand. Often this depth is built by fighting against natural evolutionary predispositions."

Got it: People - even people like Putin - are like onions. They have layers built through suffering around or even against their natural cores.

Thanks, David. This is just what I needed to know.

[Re President Obama's Ocean Reef Club golf vacation, see:]

1 comment:

  1. The profound David Brooks, for whom deep water might call for galoshes.