Who is This Guy?

Or, About the Author

Adam Singer
3 min readMay 12, 2021

May 12th, 2021

As I’ve started writing these different essays or articles or whatever you want to call them, I’ve been thinking often about why anyone ought to listen to me in particular — another white guy on the internet. I don’t have a PhD or a degree in any sociology or science related field, I’m just a guy. So I’ll try as briefly as possible to sum up my life experience that may be relevant here.

I’m gay and my back hurts.

Too brief? Ok then, a few more details. Both of the above are true; I grew up as a gay boy in the 80s and 90s, so I’ve experienced the effects of long-term discrimination and harrassment. I know how it feels to be a minority. Also, I’m a cis-gendered middle-class white man living in the United States, so at the same time, I’m absurdly privileged. This creates a weird mix in my brain and feelings that I think about quite often, and that I’ve spent a lot of time examining, especially since the murder of George Floyd and the resulting cultural earthquake. Society at large has been screaming out for the last year for people in my demographic to shut up and listen, and rightly so, and I’ve been doing a lot of that.

I have also spent 8 years with chronic pain, (I am literally always in physical discomfort), and I have learned to get past it without painkillers or alcohol. It’s been quite a journey, and it has taught me a lot about surrender, the idea of fairness, mind-over-matter, and compassion.

By trade, I’m a commercial artist. I’m a freelancer and I work alongside dozens of new and different people per year. Like many artists, I tend to look at society “from the outside,” and for my entire life, have been naturally observant of human behavior as if I’m some alien making a documentary about people. I’ve been fortunate enough to have time and space to think even more deeply than usual about society and human behavior during the pandemic, and there has been a lot to think about!

All this is to say that I am intentionally conscious of my subjectivity as I write these articles, and have had lots of opportunity to observe the subjective viewpoints of others as well.

In the hopes of balancing my subjective viewpoint so I can write something genuinely useful to others, and also just out of personal interest, I’ve spent a great deal of my free time studying social and political theories, indigenous wisdom, mythology, and buddhist philosophies, among other things. I’ve been developing and sticking to a healthy practice of personal growth, and seen how both my own internal life (meditation, therapy, learning, connection with nature) and external life (diet, exercise, etc) have benefited from the work of improving the other. In other words, I’m experiencing for myself in real-time how connected all of this stuff is, and how just starting in one area can help build momentum that carries into others.

The thing I keep coming back to is the time and space; I needed it in order to do this. Without the time and space, I couldn’t make it all start to click. I tried for two decades and hadn’t had much success. I am so grateful for the time and space I have had, and I want to work on ways to help more of it become available to others who need it too. Of course, time and space alone are not enough; internal orientation matters equally.

My goal here is not to try to sell anyone on the virtues of personal growth work. I have only listed the things that have led to some profound inspiration for me that I’ve never experienced before. At 40 years old, on the tail end of 14 months of isolation in a pandemic, I am more optimistic and excited about the future than I’ve ever been in my life. My goal is to share this inspiration with as many people as possible. I want everyone to have it. I believe, for some, it’s in short supply these days.

Thanks for taking the time to read my stuff, and I sincerely hope that you find it uplifting.