The Closure of Philosophy in Action

 Posted by on 23 September 2015 at 4:00 pm  Announcements
Sep 232015

After much reflection and agonizing, I’ve decided that I need to stop work on Philosophy in Action, at least for the foreseeable future.

My life has changed tremendously this past year, and I’ve changed too. I want to pursue a new career path, and I can’t do that effectively while working on Philosophy in Action. Moreover, I need a private life, and I cannot have that as a public intellectual talking about moral philosophy and its application to daily life. That’s not the whole story, but it’ll have to suffice for now.

I’ve loved my work with Philosophy in Action. I’m proud of the ways in which I untangled complex ideas and helped people live more conscious, principled, and happy lives. I’m proud of the ways that I’ve grown as an intellectual and a person through it. I’m sad to be leaving that work behind, as much as I know that that’s the right decision.

I’m so grateful to the people who’ve supported my work financially over the years. Quite literally, I couldn’t have done it without you. Many thanks to the many people who contributed to Philosophy in Action in other ways, including appearing for interviews, submitting questions, sharing links, and offering feedback.

Moreover, the show wouldn’t have been possible without the week-in, week-out contributions of Greg and Tammy Perkins, who helped me craft and deliver almost every Sunday Q&A for nearly five years. Paul Hsieh deserves a special mention and huge thanks too, of course: he was my intellectual partner, enthusiastic supporter, and silent benefactor for every episode. I would thank Arthur Zey for being my backup co-host as needed, but I know he enjoyed it too much to need that.

The six-year archive of podcasts and radio shows — 362 episodes in total — will remain freely available, and premium content (like Explore Atlas Shrugged) will remain available for sale. The tip jar will remain open too, for anyone who finds that podcast archive of sufficient value. If you wish you’d had contributed (or contributed more) over the years, it’s not too late!

I’m still open to the possibility of podcast series or writing projects under the auspices of Philosophy in Action at some point in the future. However, I don’t have any definite plans for that. Right now, I need a complete break to move forward with my life.

Some of my fans are likely to be surprised and dismayed by this announcement. That’s understandable; it’s even gratifying. In response, I’d love to hear what you most valued in the show — not just in general, but about particular questions that helped you navigate life better. That would mean so much to me, more than I can properly express here.

The last radio show will be broadcast on Sunday, September 27th at 8 am PT / 9 MT / 10 CT / 11 ET. I hope that the many fans of Philosophy in Action will join Greg and me for that live broadcast. It would be a special pleasure to see a large audience in the chat.

After that, I plan to withdraw from the very public online life that I’ve lead for so many years. Please be assured that I’m doing well, and I look forward to seeing many of you in person at ATLOSCon and elsewhere.

Thanks again to my fans and best wishes,

Diana Brickell (Hsieh) Philosophy in Action

  • Sam Cox

    What does this mean for purchasers of unfinished podcast sets such as Philosophy of Religion (

    • Diana Brickell

      That’s the only unfinished set, and it means refunds, which I’ll process sometime in the next week or so. It’s been a crazy busy few days…

  • Stephen_Macklin

    I have only recently developed a podcast addiction and without doubt Philosophy in Action was my gateway drug. No matter how many podcasts are cued up on my phone they all get put on hold each week when the new PiA is online.

    I would like very much to fulfill your request to highlight the particular question(s) that helped me navigate life, but for me the benefit, the real value, was in the premise of the show itself. I think I always got the most out of questions that bore no relation to my life at all. These allowed me to pay attention and learn about the process of thinking philosophically about everyday life with out the distraction of thinking of my own particular circumstances.

    Philosophy in Action will be greatly missed and I wish you all then best.

    • Diana Brickell

      Thank you so much, Stephen!

  • Tom Jones

    The question that helped me the most was the one you answered for me. I’m still implementing the strategies you gave for fostering motivation, it’s already helped me in countless ways. I don’t know a lot of Objectivists near me IRL, so I don’t get to interact with them often. Listening to your podcast and being in the chat has made me feel more part of a community and that has been a huge motivator as well. I will sorely miss listening every week. I hope your new direction brings you all the happiness and flourishing you could wish for, Diana, you deserve it.

    You have also raised my awareness about the importance of personality, with the DISC model, and politics, with the three languages of politics. I know you didn’t create these things, but your analysis has helped to inform my thinking on these issues and I have already seen the benefits at work and interpersonally.

    Thank you so much, Diana. I wish you all the best, and I look forward to seeing you online again in the future.

    • Diana Brickell

      Thank you, Tom! Best wishes!

  • NEWB

    You had a podcast where you recommended that a listener move in order to be surrounded by more opportunity, sane people, and a chance for a happier life. This podcast inspired me to move from backwoods Louisiana to Seattle. I now have a job where I am challenged and have opportunities to grow. This city is full of sensible, intelligent, passionate people that I enjoy being around. I get to hike almost every weekend. Thank you Diana and team for providing inspiration, sharing ideas, and entertaining me for so long! Do you have any suggestions for which podcasts can fill the gap left by your podcast?

    • Diana Brickell

      That’s wonderful to hear. Thank you!

  • Eric Gmutza

    NOOOOOoooooooo! So many of the great conversations I’ve had with my wife have begun with the words, “So I was listening to Diana Hsieh’s podcast, and she was talking about…”

    What will we talk about now? ;)

    Tough to put my finger on just one or two things that I learned from your show. I will say you’ve definitely helped me identify a bit of a rationalistic streak I have. Your discussion of personality theory helped me get over a fingernails-on-chalkboard aversion to a high-I coworker, who it turns out was not being deliberately annoying. I also found the episodes covering fixed vs. growth mindsets to be extremely helpful. They’ve helped me step outside my comfort zone in several fun and life-affirming ways just recently.

    Anyway, I hate to see you go, but it sounds like it’s time. Best of luck, wherever your journey takes you!

    • Diana Brickell

      Thank you, Eric!

  • Ryan Babcock

    Ya that’s too bad, but It was really refreshing to get a philosopher who’s personality was “modern” for lack of a better term in Objectivism. Aesthetically, Objectivists philosophers traditionally seem kind of cold, stoic and angry, which of coarse isn’t true of the actual philosophy, but you really conveyed a flowing sense of life in your style. Like an tree… I hope you keep writing at least. You’ve certainly helped me live a better life. Oh and the way your website is set up, is sooo easy to use. Peikoff and Brooke could totally use some tips to make theirs more user friendly. I mean its by topic and right in the open how much easier can you get. Anyway good luck.

  • Tom Burroughes

    Thanks for keeping up all the archives of the material. I have listened regularly to these productions but haven’t had the chance to hear all of them, so it is great that they remain here.

    I have been greatly nourished, intellectually, by your work here. In particular, I enjoy the very grounded, fresh and upbeat way you describe particularly subjects and discuss them with Greg to reach a set of conclusions. The general tenor of PIA has been bright, focused and positive. This stands apart in many ways.

    Whatever you do in future, I wish you and your loved ones the best.

    Regards from the UK.

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