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Seize the Moment Podcast

May 28, 2023

On episode 174, we welcome Michael Ignatieff to discuss the consolation of philosophy, the difference between comfort and consolation, distinguishing between false and true consolations and how they affect those suffering, the various secular and religious consolations, the purpose of hospice care and how it helps people die well, using one’s death to create meaning, consolations as myths and why it doesn’t matter if they’re true, the impossibility of moral purity and Michael’s regrets as a politician, the symbolism of the book of Job and the irrationality of the question ‘why me?’, and why consolation is a social process that necessitates the need for others.


Michael Ignatieff is the author of Isaiah Berlin and The Warrior’s Honor, as well as over fifteen other acclaimed books, including a memoir, The Russian Album, and the Booker finalist novel Scar Tissue. He writes regularly for the New York Times, the New York Review of Books, and the London Review of Books. Former head of Canada’s Liberal Party, director of the Carr Center for Human Rights at Harvard’s Kennedy School, and president of Central European University, he is currently a professor at CEU in Vienna. His newest book, available now, is called On Consolation: Finding Solace in Dark Times.


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