The Eudemon

Write for the “Medium arm” of one of the longest-running publications on the Internet

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The Eudemon is the “Medium arm” of The Daily Eudemon, a blog that has been in continuous operation since 2004. It provides a Catholic perspective on the higher things in life, from religion and philosophy to history and biography to gardening and drinking.

If your article is published at The Eudemon, it will also be referenced or featured at The Daily Eudemon.

In order to be a writer, you will generally need to be a partner. First, set up an account at Medium. …

A Monk of the Eastern Church: A brief life. (And 18 things you can learn from reading the Monk.)

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Photo by John McArthur on Unsplash

Mystical. Passionate. Spiritual. Cranky. Monastic. Urban. Greek Orthodox. Catholic. French. English.

Anonymous. . .

. . . Lev (Leo) Gillet.

All of those words describe an unusual man who would become known to readers as “A Monk of the Eastern Church.”

He was born in France in 1893. Shortly before World War I, he became interested in a Bulgarian girl, so he tried to learn Bulgarian. When he couldn’t find a teacher, he learned Russian instead.

He permanently lost touch with the girl when World War I broke out. He served in the French army. …

In this age of uncertainty, you need beliefs and practices but not dogmas and preaching

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Photo by André François McKenzie on Unsplash

“Let me tell you about COVID, the COVID vaccine, and Bitcoin.”

If any person starts telling me about those things, I write them off.

All three of those things are new and huge. As a result, they occupy a weird spot in the world of opinion: Everyone needs to have a stance on them and nobody’s stance is worth anything.

It’s difficult to reconcile such a paradox, but here’s one way: Take your stance, be prepared to shift it, and keep it to yourself.

Beliefs and practices, yes. Dogmas and preaching, no.

A wealthy client of mine recently asked a…

Bill Kauffman painted lots of their portraits in Look Homeward, America

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Photo by Dan Meyers on Unsplash

Strong, deep, readable, desperate, fun. All those adjectives — even those that trip over one another — fit this book.

It’s such a good book, it made me want to quit writing. “If someone like Kauffman, with his erudition and talent, isn’t a household name, what makes me think I can scratch together enough publishable words to cover my underwear budget?”

I’m not saying it’s the best book ever, not even the best book of the past 15 years. Indeed, when I went back through it for this piece, I almost put it back on the shelf: it simply doesn’t…

Noisiness tends to stem from an inability to look outside oneself, which is something both the unintelligent and the boors lack

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Photo by Ilyuza Mingazova on Unsplash

Schopenhauer said, “The higher one’s tolerance for noise, the lower one’s intellect.”

I’ve long said a similar thing: “The louder a person is, the less intelligent he is.”

These are merely general rules and I’ve known a few notable exceptions.

They’re also rules that are subject to one’s situation in life.

Young people, for instance, are louder than older people. They haven’t fallen down 10,000 times like older people, so they lack the wisdom and resignation of an older person and, therefore, have the undiluted joyful enthusiasm we all ought to have. They also have more energy and are healthier.

A snapshot of the southern literary tradition in the early 20th century

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Photo by Emily Corley on Unsplash

I think Bill Kauffman has more literary anecdotes than any man alive. If you like such things, I recommend Kauffman’s relatively-unknown Poetry Night at the Ball Park, which is out of print but you can get it inexpensively on Kindle.

I ran across this passage last night while recovering from a migraine and just flipping through my random notes:

Among my favorite interviewees was novelist and Civil War epicist Shelby Foote. I showed up at his stockbroker-Tudor home in Memphis about noon. Foote, long-haired, wearing ratty pajamas, answered the door and drawled, “Ah wuz jes’ fixin’ ta go ta thuh…

Professor Michael Jordan’s Final Exam Letter to his Students

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Photo by Frances Gunn on Unsplash

Professor Michael Jordan saw last week’s post. He graciously provided me the original, full letter, with this note:

I taught a course on “The Agrarian Roots of Western Civilization” back in 1999, and while students were taking the final, I wrote this letter to them, a letter that summarized some of the basic themes of the course.

The full letter is below

While it is unlikely that you will take up the plow after you graduate, you can still be a good Agrarian. …

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I hung out with Michael Jordan outside Chicago about twenty years ago.

No, not basketball Michael Jordan. I’m talking about Michael Jordan, the English professor from Hillsdale College.

We met at a Touchstone conference at Mundelein Seminary. He saw my name tag and said he enjoyed my articles. Being a narcissist, I was smitten, and we talked a bit and took a few meals together. Because we only lived an hour apart, we kept in touch a bit and met for lunch once, but then drifted away into life.

I bumped into him a few months ago at a Hillsdale…

Reddit, GameStop, Stimulus, and Two Things to Do If You Want to Survive and Thrive in the Age of the Black Swan

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Photo by Yuvraj Yadav on Unsplash

Everything was obvious to Wall Street investors:

Brick-and-mortar businesses are failing. GameStop sells a product that is cheaper and better to buy online. GameStop is going to fail. Let’s short the crap out of its stock so we make a killing when GameStop files bankruptcy.

There were supposedly more short shares than actual shares.

Enter r/Wallstreetbets (queue Seven Nation Army), armed with a lot of free time and stimulus checks.

They decided they like GameStop . . . or wanted to stick it to the hedge fund managers . . . or wanted to make a ton of money by…

You take the desert approach or the Holden Caulfield approach

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Photo by Simon Maisch on Unsplash

Toward the end of The Catcher in the Rye, Holden Caulfield tells himself he will move out West and shut himself off from everyone and everything, possibly by posing as a deaf-mute.

If he pretends to be a deaf-mute, he reasons, people would have to write messages to him on a piece of paper, and then, after they got tired of it, he’d be finished with conversations for the rest of his life.

Holden, a radically-disaffected youngster, thought his move out West would contain the seeds of his salvation because it would take him away from a world that held…

The Eudemon

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