OlioHouse Weekend | Desire & Free Will

Ramon Casas - Laziness

Why does our will disobey us? What is happening when we go against our intentions?

The classical debates about "the weakness of the will" focus mainly on the moral aspect of the inner tension between will and desire, allegedly opposed. I know what I want to be doing, but some obscure forces push me towards doing something else, potentially radically opposed to what I know I should do rationally. In this OlioHouse weekend, we’ll be exploring some 'dysfunctions' of the will: indecisiveness, apathy, but also obsessions and addictions which are familiar to all of us.


How do philosophers approach the relationship between desires, passions, and willpower? And also, more generally, what exactly is "willpower" made of? Maybe we can precisely answer this question by observing what happens when the will dissolves itself. 

It might be necessary to get away from too rigid a theory of mental faculties, where willpower is classically defined as a rational category of the mind, among memory, imagination, or judgment. Maybe what we call voluntary actions or free will are simply the expressions of the individual's physiology, character, and effective tendencies, and perhaps the lack of motivation, addictive behavior, and the inability for decision making should be reevaluated with an approach that involves philosophy, psychology, and physiology.

Let's gather at OlioHouse to investigate the nature of will in an original way, questioning the blurry frontiers between the normal and the abnormal, the healthy and the morbid. 


Schedule for the weekend:

Saturday:

Noon - Arrive at OlioHouse for a communal lunch 

1:00pm - A Socratic-style Olio with Jeanne - "Weakness of the will",
where we'll question: Is it possible to act against our best judgment?
Are the inner conflicts we sometimes feel happening between "desire" and "will"?

2:30pm - Free time to explore Wassaic and hangout around OlioHouse

4:00pm - Jeanne will teach  Acedia, Abulia, Apathy: Mental Paralysis
Where we'll question: What happens when our will gets flabby? How about a reevaluation of laziness?

7:00pm - Communal cooking 

Sunday:

9:00am: Breakfast

10:00am: Yoga led by Julia Hirsch and a wrap-up writing workshop with Jeanne centered on the topic of indecision and repetitive behaviors. We'll be sharing some ways that we deal with this in our daily lives and explore some possible remedies.





Location: OlioHouse | Wassaic, NY

296 Old Rte 22, Wassaic, NY 12592

This is our gorgeous home up in Wassaic, NY. We hold weekend seminars and welcome members of our scenius for creative residencies and projects. It is located less than a 20 min walk from the Metro North station in Wassaic and 2 hours from Grand Central. We are the proud neighbors of the Wassaic Project.




Interdisciplinary Learning with the Best Professors


Think Olio is not about learning a new skill or adding credentials to your resume. It is about getting together with other people and expanding our worldview. It exists as a conduit for fruitful discussions, a dissent from the regurgitation of facts, and an embrace of new perspectives.


Learn about joining the Scenius for $10 / month



Other upcoming Olios


May 22

Stoicism in a World out of Your Control

Taught by Massimo Pigliucci
7:30 p.m. at The Assemblage | NoMad

Sign Up - $20

May 22

The Holy Fool

Taught by Geoff Klock
7 p.m. at Strand Bookstore

Sign Up - $20

May 24

Sex, Pleasure & Intimacy in the Time of Capitalism

Taught by Kim Nguyen
7 p.m. at Strand Bookstore

Sign Up - $20

May 25

OlioHouse | The Production of Nature

Taught by Lauren Hudson
noon at OlioHouse | Wassaic, NY

Sign Up - $150

May 29

Composing Beauty: Mapplethorpe’s Quest for Perfection

Taught by Jeanne Proust
7 p.m. at BAM Fisher

Sign Up - $20

May 30

Painting the Apocalypse: Haring, Basquiat and the Eighties

Taught by Charles Riley
7 p.m. at The William Vale Hotel

Sign Up - $20

Jun 2

New York City: From Reconstruction to Universal Rent Control

Taught by Lauren Hudson
2 p.m. at Grant's Tomb

Sign Up - $0

Jun 8

OlioHouse | Words, Labels, & Power

Taught by Jeanne Proust
2 p.m. at OlioHouse | Wassaic, NY

Sign Up - $150

Jun 14

The Emergence of Sexuality

Taught by Jamie Warren
7 p.m. at The Assemblage | NoMad

Sign Up - $20

Jun 23

Female Power and Desire in Shakespeare after #MeToo

Taught by Christina Katopodis
1 p.m. at Threes Brewing // Greenpoint

Sign Up - $15

Jun 26

Jun 29

OlioHouse | Happiness & Hedonism

Taught by Skye Cleary
2 p.m. at OlioHouse | Wassaic, NY

Sign Up - $150

Sep 19

OlioTrip | Cienfuegos, Cuba

Taught by Teresita Levy
10 a.m. at Cienfuegos, Cuba

Sign Up - $


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