Sam Keen was, in his words, “over-educated at Harvard and Princeton” and was a professor of philosophy and religion at “various legitimate institutions” and a contributing editor of Psychology Today for 20 years before becoming a free-lance thinker, lecturer, seminar leader and consultant. He is the author of a baker’s dozen books, and a co-producer of an award winning PBS documentary, Faces of the Enemy. His work was the subject of a 60 minute PBS special Bill Moyers–Your Mythic Journey with Sam Keen.
When not writing or traveling around the world lecturing and doing seminars on a wide range of topics on which he claims he is “not necessarily an expert but a skilled explorer,” he cuts wood, tends to his farm in the hills above Sonoma, takes long hikes and practices the flying trapeze.
The practice of philosophy is a way of life that results from falling in love with questions—the great mythic questions that can never be given definitive answers. My work as a writer, lecturer and workshop leader has focused on exploring these questions:
- How can I find a meaning, purpose, vocation for my life?
- What can I know?
- What ought I to do?
- For what may I hope?
- Is there life beyond death?
- Whom do I love? Who loves me?
- What curtails my freedom?
- How can I escape from the constricting social, political, sexual, and economic myths that were imposed on me by my family and culture?
- To what cause, ideal, faith may I surrender without destroying the integrity of my self?
- What does it mean to experience the sacred?
- How can I live a spirited life in a world dominated by a secular-technological-economic vision of reality?
- How can we create a more just and peaceful world?
Human life is a journey whose end is not in sight. Searching, longing and questioning is in our DNA. Who we are and what we will become is determined by the questions that animate us, and by those we refuse to ask. Your questions are your quest. As you ask, so shall you be.