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On Being with Krista Tippett

Religion & Spirituality Podcas

Wisdom to replenish and orient in a tender, tumultuous time to be alive. Spiritual inquiry, science, social healing, and poetry. Conversations to live by. With a 20-year archive featuring luminaries like Mary Oliver, Thich Nhat Hanh, and Desmond Tutu, each episode brings a new discovery about the immensity of our lives. Hosted by Krista Tippett, Learn more about the On Being Project’s work in the world at onbeing.org.

Location:

Minneapolis, MN

Description:

Wisdom to replenish and orient in a tender, tumultuous time to be alive. Spiritual inquiry, science, social healing, and poetry. Conversations to live by. With a 20-year archive featuring luminaries like Mary Oliver, Thich Nhat Hanh, and Desmond Tutu, each episode brings a new discovery about the immensity of our lives. Hosted by Krista Tippett, Learn more about the On Being Project’s work in the world at onbeing.org.

Twitter:

@beingtweets

Language:

English

Contact:

1619 Hennepin Avenue, Minneapolis, MN 55403 612-584-3859


Episodes
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“Joy is the Justice (We Give Ourselves)” by J. Drew Lanham

5/24/2024
We are overjoyed to share this heart-stirring performance with you, which transpired when we invited the ornithologist/poet/former On Being guest J. Drew Lanham to offer some poetry at a live On Being event in January 2024. We could not have imagined the lightning in a bottle that unfolded — a live adaptation of the title poem that appears in Drew's wonderful new book, Joy is the Justice We Give Ourselves. Be sure to listen to his full 2022 conversation (accompanied by poetry and birdsong) with Krista — “Pathfinding Through the Improbable.” And find our full collection of poetry films and readings from two decades of the show, at Experience Poetry. J. Drew Lanham is an Alumni Distinguished Professor of Wildlife Ecology, Master Teacher, and Certified Wildlife Biologist at Clemson University. In 2022, he was named the Poet Laureate of Edgefield County, South Carolina, where he grew up. He is the author of The Home Place: Memoirs of a Colored Man’s Love Affair with Nature and a collection of poetry and meditations, Sparrow Envy: Field Guide to Birds and Lesser Beasts. His new book is Joy is the Justice We Give Ourselves.

Duration:00:14:26

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Lyndsey Stonebridge and Lucas Johnson — On Love, Politics, and Violence (Channeling Hannah Arendt)

5/23/2024
Here is a stunning sentence for you, written by Lyndsey Stonebridge, our guest this hour, channeling the 20th-century political thinker and journalist Hannah Arendt: "Loneliness is the bully that coerces us into giving up on democracy." This conversation is a kind of guide to generative shared deliberations we might be having with each other and ourselves in this intensely fraught global political moment: on the human underlay that gives democracy its vigor or threatens to undo it; on the difference between facts and truth — and on the difference between violence and power. Krista interviewed Lyndsey once before, in 2017, after Hannah Arendt's classic work, The Origins of Totalitarianism, had become a belated runaway bestseller. Now Lyndsey has published her own wonderful book offering her and Arendt's full prescient wisdom for this time. What emerges is elevating and exhilaratingly thoughtful — while also brimming with helpful, practicable words and ideas. We have, in Lyndsey's phrase, "un-homed" ourselves. And yet we are always defined by our capacity to give birth to something new — and so to partake again and again in the deepest meaning of freedom. Hannah Arendt's other epic books include The Human Condition, and Eichmann in Jerusalem, in which she famously coined the phrase "the banality of evil." She was born a German Jew in 1906, fled Nazi Germany and spent many years as a stateless person, and died an American citizen in 1975. This conversation with Lyndsey Stonebridge happened in January 2024, as part of a gathering of visionaries, activists, and creatives across many fields. Krista interviewed her alongside Lucas Johnson, a former leader of the International Fellowship of Reconciliation who now leads our social healing initiatives at The On Being Project. Lyndsey Stonebridge is a Professor of Humanities and Human Rights at the University of Birmingham in the U.K. Her 2024 book is We Are Free to Change the World: Hannah Arendt’s Lessons in Love and Disobedience. Her other books include Placeless People: Writings, Rights, and Refugees. In 2023, she was elected a Fellow of the British Academy. Lucas Johnson is Executive Vice President of Public Life & Social Healing at The On Being Project. He was previously a leader of the International Fellowship of Reconciliation, the world’s oldest interfaith peace organization. Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion newsletter to the On Being podcast season, and news and invitations all year round. Be the first to know as tickets go on sale for the On Being 2025 live national conversation tour.

Duration:01:15:21

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New From Poetry Unbound: A Series on Conflict and the Human Condition

5/21/2024
A taste of a special mini-season of Poetry Unbound — bringing contemplative curiosity and the life-nurturing tether of poetry to the very present matter of conflict in our world. In this first offering, Pádraig introduces the intriguing idea of poems as teachers and ponders Wisława Szymborska’s “A Word on Statistics," translated by Joanna Trzeciak. This poem covers statistics of the most human kind — like the number of people in a group of 100 who think they know better, who can admire without envy, or who could do terrible things. Listen, and ask yourself: Which categories do I belong to? Which do I believe? Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. All seven parts of the series are ready for listening now in the Poetry Unbound feed and at onbeing.org. Read Pádraig’s weekly Poetry Unbound Substack, read the Poetry Unbound book, or listen back to all of our episodes.

Duration:00:11:09

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Colette Pichon Battle — On Knowing What We're Called To

5/16/2024
There is an ecological transformation unfolding in the places we love and come from. On a front edge of this reality, which will affect us all, Colette Pichon Battle is a singular model of brilliance and graciousness of mind and spirit and action. And to be with her is to open to the way the stories we tell have blunted us to the courage we’re called to, and the joy we must nurture, as life force and fuel for the work ahead. As a young woman, she left her home state of Louisiana and land to which her family belonged for generations, to go to college and become a powerful lawyer in Washington, D.C. Then in 2005, after Hurricane Katrina made, as she has said, "a crack in the universe," she returned home to a whole new life and calling. Colette Pichon Battle is a vivid embodiment of the new forms societal shift is taking in our world — led by visionary pragmatists close to the ground, in particular places, persistently and lovingly learning and leading the way for us all. Colette Pichon Battle is co-founder and Vision & Initiatives Partner for Taproot Earth, a global organization which has emerged from the Gulf Coast Center for Law & Policy that she founded and led in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. She and her colleagues are influencing manifold aspects of our ecological present, including equitable disaster recovery and global migration, community economic development and energy democracy. Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. This show originally aired in March 2022. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion newsletter to the On Being podcast season, and our mailing list for news and invitations all year round. Be the first to know as tickets go on sale for the On Being 2025 live national conversation tour.

Duration:01:02:38

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Kate DiCamillo — On Nurturing Capacious Hearts

5/9/2024
In her writing, it is Kate DiCamillo's gift to make bearable the fact that joy and sorrow live so close, side by side, in life as it is (if not as we wish it to be). In this conversation, along with good measures of raucous laughter and a few tears, Kate summons us to hearts "capacious enough to contain the complexities and mysteries of ourselves and each other" — qualities these years in the life of the world call forth from all of us, young and old, with ever greater poignancy and vigor. Kate DiCamillo has written many bestselling books, beloved by children and adults in touch with their inner eight-year-old, for two decades, including Because of Winn-Dixie, The Tale of Despereaux, The Magician’s Elephant, Flora & Ulysses, and The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane. Some of these have been turned into operas and movies. Her new books in 2024 include the middle grade novel Ferris and Orris and Timble: The Beginning. She is a rare two-time winner of the Newbery Medal. Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. This show originally aired in March 2022. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion newsletter to the On Being podcast season, and our mailing list for news and invitations all year round. Be the first to know as tickets go on sale for the On Being 2025 live national conversation tour.

Duration:00:54:16

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Wisdom, Solace, and Courage for 2024

5/2/2024
A special two-month season of On Being starts May 9. Freshly curated conversations from across the On Being archive. Big new conversations and extra offerings. To be present to the suffering and sorrow of this world from a place of love. To accompany each other in this — and accompany the young. To honor the fragility of being human. To keep our capacity for joy alive as a human birthright — and as fuel for resilience. To grasp the relationship between violence and power. To listen to our bodies, and metabolize the distress of our collective nervous system. To practice the power of imagination and create new worlds and new ways of living. To take the natural world as teacher and guide as we stand before the species-level shifts we're called to. To nurture hearts "capacious enough" for the complexities and mysteries of ourselves and each other. Join us. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion newsletter to the On Being podcast season, and news and invitations all year round. Be the first to know as tickets go on sale for the On Being 2025 live national conversation tour.

Duration:00:02:58

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Nick Cave — Loss, Yearning, Transcendence

11/22/2023
Here are some experiences to which Nick Cave gives voice and song: the "universal condition" of yearning, and of loss; a "spirituality of rigor"; and the transcendent and moral dimensions of what music is about. This Australian musician, writer, and actor first made a name in the wild world of ’80s post-punk and later with Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. He also underwent public struggles with addiction and rehab. Since the accidental death of his 15-year-old son Arthur in 2015, and a few years later, the death of his eldest child Jethro, he has entered yet another transfigured era, co-created an exquisite book called Faith, Hope and Carnage, and become a frank and eloquent interlocutor on grief. As a human and a songwriter, Nick Cave is an embodiment of a life examined and evolved. He sat with Krista in the On Being studio in Minneapolis, and the gorgeous conversation that followed is woven in this episode with his gorgeous music. Nick Cave is the songwriter and lead singer of Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds. Their albums include Ghosteen, Skeleton Tree, and Push the Sky Away. Nick's recent albums with frequent collaborator Warren Ellis include Seven Psalms and Carnage. His book, which takes the form of an electric conversation with journalist Seán O’Hagan, is Faith, Hope and Carnage. He frequently writes, and answers questions from his fans, on the website The Red Hand Files. Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion newsletter to the On Being podcast season, and news and invitations all year round.

Duration:01:03:59

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A Word from Krista

11/21/2023
A little musing on this season, the spectacular finale headed your way — and ways to stay connected in the time ahead. Subscribe to the The Pause Find our Starting Points Peruse our Libraries And on YouTube, grab a Poem to Carry in Your Pocket

Duration:00:02:22

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Sara Hendren — Our Bodies, Aliveness, and the Built World

11/16/2023
Our built world is designed around something called "normal," and yet every single one of our bodies is mysterious, and constantly adapting for better or worse — and always, always changing. This is a fact so ordinary — and yet not something most of us routinely pause to know and to ponder and work with. But Sara Hendren has made it her passion, bringing to it her varied vocations and gifts: being a painter and loving how art reveals truth not by way of simplicity, but by juxtaposition; teaching design to engineering students; parenting three beloved children, one of whom has Down syndrome. This is a conversation that will have you moving through the world both marveling at the ordinary adaptations that bodies make and asking, in Sara's words, "restless and generative questions": of why we organize the physical world as though vulnerability and needs for assistance are not commonplace — indeed salutary — forms of experience that reveal the genius of what being human is all about. Sara Hendren is an associate professor in the College of Arts, Media, and Design at Northeastern University in Boston. She previously spent nine years teaching at Olin College of Engineering. Her book is What Can a Body Do? How We Meet the Built World. You can also find some of her short pieces of writing on her website, sarahendren.com. Her newsletter is undefended / undefeated. Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion newsletter to the On Being podcast season, and news and invitations all year round.

Duration:01:01:26

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Christiana Figueres — Ecological Hope, and Spiritual Evolution

11/9/2023
The ecological crisis we are standing before is at once civilizational and personal — intimately close to each of us in the places we love and inhabit, and unfolding at a species level. And as much as anyone alive on the planet now, Christiana Figueres has felt the overwhelm of this and stepped into service. She gives voice so eloquently to the grief that we feel and must allow to bind us to each other — and what she sees as a spiritual evolution the natural world is calling us to. If you have wondered how to keep hope alive amidst a thousand reasons to despair, if you are ready to take your despair as fuel — intrigued by the idea of stepping into love and immediate realities of abundance and regeneration — this conversation is for you. Christiana Figueres was Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change from 2010-2016, and is known as the powerhouse who made the 2015 Paris Agreement possible — in which 195 nations worked with their wildly diverse conditions and points of view on the what and the when and the why, and yet made commitments in service of our hurting planet and the future of humanity. Her book, written together with Tom Rivett-Carnac, is The Future We Choose. She is founding partner of the organization Global Optimism and co-hosts the podcast Outrage + Optimism. Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion to the podcast season.

Duration:01:19:41

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Clint Smith — What We Know in the "Marrow of Our Bones"

11/2/2023
This phrase recurs throughout Clint Smith's writing: "in the marrow of our bones." It is an example of how words can hold encrypted wisdom — in this case, the reality that memory and emotion lodge in us physically. Words and phrases have carried this truth forward in time long before we had the science to understand it. Clint Smith is best known for his 2021 book, How the Word Is Passed, but he is first and foremost a poet. He and Krista discuss how his various life chapters have been real-world laboratories for him to investigate the entanglement between language and the intelligence of the body — and the related entanglement between history and place. His poetic sensibility has singularly opened readers to approach a generative reckoning with American history — on whatever side of that history our ancestors stood. Clint Smith has a way of making reckoning possible at a humanizing, softening, bodily level — in the marrow, you might say, of our bones. Clint Smith is a staff writer at The Atlantic. His narrative nonfiction book, How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning With the History of Slavery Across America, won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction and many other honors. His poetry collections are Counting Descent and Above Ground. Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion to the podcast season.

Duration:01:04:22

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“Dance Party” by Clint Smith

11/2/2023
Clint Smith reads his poem, “Dance Party.” This poem is featured in Clint’s On Being conversation with Krista, “What We Know in the ‘Marrow of Our Bones.’” Find more of his poems, along with our full collection of poetry films and readings from two decades of the show, at Experience Poetry. Clint Smith is a staff writer at The Atlantic. His narrative nonfiction book, How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning With the History of Slavery Across America, won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction and many other honors. His poetry collections are Counting Descent and Above Ground.

Duration:00:02:25

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“Ode to Those First Fifteen Minutes After the Kids Are Finally Asleep” by Clint Smith

11/2/2023
Clint Smith reads his poem, “Ode to Those First Fifteen Minutes After the Kids Are Finally Asleep.” This poem is featured in Clint’s On Being conversation with Krista, “What We Know in the ‘Marrow of Our Bones.’” Find more of his poems, along with our full collection of poetry films and readings from two decades of the show, at Experience Poetry. Clint Smith is a staff writer at The Atlantic. His narrative nonfiction book, How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning With the History of Slavery Across America, won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction and many other honors. His poetry collections are Counting Descent and Above Ground.

Duration:00:01:55

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[Extended] Clint Smith with Krista Tippett

11/2/2023
This phrase recurs throughout Clint Smith's writing: "in the marrow of our bones." It is an example of how words can hold encrypted wisdom — in this case, the reality that memory and emotion lodge in us physically. Words and phrases have carried this truth forward in time long before we had the science to understand it. Clint Smith is best known for his 2021 book, How the Word Is Passed, but he is first and foremost a poet. He and Krista discuss how his various life chapters have been real-world laboratories for him to investigate the entanglement between language and the intelligence of the body — and the related entanglement between history and place. His poetic sensibility has singularly opened readers to approach a generative reckoning with American history — on whatever side of that history our ancestors stood. Clint Smith has a way of making reckoning possible at a humanizing, softening, bodily level — in the marrow, you might say, of our bones. Clint Smith is a staff writer at The Atlantic. His narrative nonfiction book, How the Word Is Passed: A Reckoning With the History of Slavery Across America, won the National Book Critics Circle Award for Nonfiction and many other honors. His poetry collections are Counting Descent and Above Ground. This interview is edited and produced with music and other features in the On Being episode "Clint Smith — What We Know in the ‘Marrow of Our Bones.’" Find the transcript for that show at onbeing.org. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion to the podcast season.

Duration:01:48:38

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Three Skills for Staying Calm, Sane, and Open in a Chaotic World | Krista interviewed by Dan Harris for Ten Percent Happier

10/31/2023
From Krista: I loved being interviewed by Dan Harris as much as I've ever enjoyed being on the other side of the microphone (as the saying goes). He drew things out of me I didn't know I had to say. And I'm so impressed with him as a human being, and what he's created with Ten Percent Happier. I hope you might enjoy this! Listen to Ten Percent Happier in all the podcast places: https://www.tenpercent.com/podcast ______ The host of On Being shares lessons learned from 20 years of interviews, including: how to live with open questions, counterprogramming against your negativity bias, and getting over the God question. In this episode we talk about:

Duration:01:05:34

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Latanya Sweeney — On Shaping Technology to Human Purpose

10/26/2023
You may not know Latanya Sweeney's name, but as much as any other single person — and with good humor and grace as well as brilliance — she has led on the frontier of our gradual understanding of how far from anonymous you and I are in almost any database we inhabit, and how far from neutral all the algorithms by which we increasingly navigate our lives. In this conversation with Krista, she brings a helpful big-picture view to our lives with technology, seeing how far we've come — and not — since the advent of the internet, and setting that in the context of history both industrial and digital. She insists that we don't have to accept the harms of digital technology in order to reap its benefits — and she sees very clearly the work that will take. From where she sits, the new generative AI is in equal measure an exciting and alarming evolution. And she shares with us the questions she is asking, and how she and her students and the emerging field of Public Interest Technology might help us all make sense. This is the second in what will be an ongoing occasional On Being episode to delve into and accompany our lives with this new technological revolution — training clear eyes on downsides and dangers while cultivating an attention to how we might elevate the new frontier of AI — and how, in fact, it might invite us more deeply into our humanity. Latanya Sweeney is the Daniel Paul Professor of the Practice of Government and Technology at the Harvard Kennedy School, among her many other credentials. She’s founder and director of Harvard’s Public Interest Tech Lab and its Data Privacy Lab, and she’s the former Chief Technology Officer at the U.S. Federal Trade Commission. Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion to the podcast season, and a way to stay on top of all On Being happenings across the year.

Duration:01:01:21

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[Unedited] Latanya Sweeney with Krista Tippett

10/26/2023
You may not know Latanya Sweeney's name, but as much as any other single person — and with good humor and grace as well as brilliance — she has led on the frontier of our gradual understanding of how far from anonymous you and I are in almost any database we inhabit, and how far from neutral all the algorithms by which we increasingly navigate our lives. In this conversation with Krista, she brings a helpful big-picture view to our lives with technology, seeing how far we've come — and not — since the advent of the internet, and setting that in the context of history both industrial and digital. She insists that we don't have to accept the harms of digital technology in order to reap its benefits — and she sees very clearly the work that will take. From where she sits, the new generative AI is in equal measure an exciting and alarming evolution. And she shares with us the questions she is asking, and how she and her students and the emerging field of Public Interest Technology might help us all make sense. This is the second in what will be an ongoing occasional On Being episode to delve into and accompany our lives with this new technological revolution — training clear eyes on downsides and dangers while cultivating an attention to how we might elevate the new frontier of AI — and how, in fact, it might invite us more deeply into our humanity. Latanya Sweeney is the Daniel Paul Professor of the Practice of Government and Technology at the Harvard Kennedy School, among her many other credentials. She’s founder and director of Harvard’s Public Interest Tech Lab and its Data Privacy Lab, and she’s the former Chief Technology Officer at the U.S. Federal Trade Commission. This interview is edited and produced with music and other features in the On Being episode "Latanya Sweeney — On Shaping Technology to Human Purpose." Find the transcript for that show at onbeing.org. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion to the podcast season, and a way to stay on top of all On Being happenings across the year.

Duration:01:24:48

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Matthew Sanford – The Body's Grace

10/19/2023
A wondrous, buried treasure from the 20-year On Being archive, with renowned yoga teacher Matthew Sanford. Be prepared, as you listen to what follows, to take in subtleties and gracefulness you've never before pondered — or tried to feel in yourself — in the interplay between your mind and your body. Matthew has an immensely energetic physical presence. He has been paralyzed from the chest down since a car accident in 1978. But he likes to say that his experience is only more extreme, not so different, from that of everyone else. He's written, "We are all leaving our bodies — this is the inevitable arc of living. Death cannot be avoided; neither can the inward silence that comes with the aging process." Matthew’s intricate knowledge of that "inward silence," which he was forced to befriend after the noisy connections which most of us take for granted were severed — it’s revelatory. So is his insistence that it’s not possible to live more deeply in your body — in all its grace and all its flaws — without becoming more compassionate towards all of life. And: if you do yoga, you will never think about what it is affecting inside you in the same way again. Krista sat with Matthew Sanford in 2006, just after he'd published his beautiful book Waking: A Memoir of Trauma and Transcendence. Matthew Sanford is the founder and president of Mind Body Solutions. He teaches yoga for all kinds of bodies, including adaptive yoga classes weekly, and holds regular virtual gatherings with people around the world. A video library of his teaching methods for yoga teachers is freely available. His book is Waking: A Memoir of Trauma and Transcendence. Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion to the podcast season.

Duration:00:57:19

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Baratunde Thurston — How to Be a Social Creative

10/12/2023
Baratunde Thurston is a comedian, writer, and media entrepreneur. He has eyes open to the contradictions, strangeness, and beauty of being human. He looks for learning happening even amidst our hardest cultural tangles. And he intertwines all of this, innovatively and searchingly, with his lifelong joy in the natural world. The kaleidoscopic view of life and love and the world that is Baratunde's builds and builds in this conversation Krista had with him around the edges of the 2023 Aspen Ideas Festival — towards an exuberant glimpse of how we can all be more fully human and socially creative. Baratunde Thurston's latest adventure is hosting the fascinating PBS series America Outdoors. He's been Director of Digital at The Onion, produced The Daily Show with Trevor Noah, and advised on digital strategy at The White House. He's a founding partner of the media start-up Puck, and creator and host of the podcast How To Citizen. He's the author of several books, including How To Be Black. Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion to the podcast season.

Duration:01:09:36

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Reid Hoffman — AI, and What It Means to Be (More) Human

10/5/2023
In this season of On Being and those to come, we are going to train the core human questions on the emerging “generative AI.” Beyond the hype and the doom, what is this new technology calling us to as human beings? What is our agency to shape it to human purpose, and how might it bring us — literally — to our senses? This inaugural conversation with Reid Hoffman is a wide and deep beginning foundation. He and Krista venture into unexpectedly relevant places, like the nature of friendship in human life, and what it would mean to create “contained, boundaried AI” — and Reid's use of words like “delightful” and “elevating” as qualities we can impart to this technology which, as we're hearing again and again, is going to change everything. Reid Hoffman is co-founder and former executive chairman of LinkedIn, and a partner at the venture capital firm Greylock Partners. He's known by some as the philosopher of Silicon Valley. He is currently on the board of Microsoft and was an early investor in OpenAI, which brought ChatGPT into the world. His latest book, which he co-wrote together with GPT-4, is Impromptu: Amplifying Our Humanity Through AI. His newest venture is Inflection AI, the creator of Pi — “a supportive and empathetic conversational AI.” He is a host on the podcasts Masters of Scale, Greymatter, and Possible, which will launch its second season this fall. Find the transcript for this show at onbeing.org. ______ Sign up for The Pause — a Saturday morning companion to the podcast season.

Duration:01:23:20