The Journey to a Loving Father Son Relationship with Sam Keen

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In this podcast, I had the pleasure of speaking with Sam Keen. Sam Keen had his struggles as a father, but in the end he learned the importance of sharing stories with his son to understand one another. The result was a restored and improved father son relationship. Join us in this Oneness Approach podcast to hear Sam's wise advice about appreciating uniqueness, sharing personal stories and building healthy relationships with ourselves and our children.

About Sam Keen

Sam Keen was, in his words, “over-educated at Harvard and Princeton” and was a professor of philosophy and religion at “various legitimate institutions” and a contributing editor of Psychology Today for 20 years before becoming a freelance thinker, lecturer, seminar leader and consultant.

He is the author of a baker’s dozen books, and a co-producer of an award winning PBS documentary, Faces of the Enemy. His work was the subject of a 60 minute PBS special Bill Moyers–Your Mythic Journey with Sam Keen.

When not writing or traveling around the world lecturing and doing seminars on a wide range of topics on which he claims he is “not necessarily an expert but a skilled explorer,” he cuts wood, tends to his farm in the hills above Sonoma, takes long hikes and practices the flying trapeze.

The practice of philosophy is a way of life that results from falling in love with questions—the great mythic questions that can never be given definitive answers. My work as a writer, lecturer and workshop leader has focused on exploring these questions:

  • How can I find a meaning, purpose, vocation for my life?
  • What can I know?
  • What ought I to do?
  • For what may I hope?
  • Is there life beyond death?
  • Whom do I love? Who loves me?
  • What curtails my freedom?
  • How can I escape from the constricting social, political, sexual, and economic myths that were imposed on me by my family and culture?
  • To what cause, ideal, faith may I surrender without destroying the integrity of my self?
  • What does it mean to experience the sacred?
  • How can I live a spirited life in a world dominated by a secular-technological-economic vision of reality?
  • How can we create a more just and peaceful world?


Human life is a journey whose end is not in sight. Searching, longing and questioning is in our DNA. Who we are and what we will become is determined by the questions that animate us, and by those we refuse to ask. Your questions are your quest. As you ask, so shall you be.

0:09 Introducing Sam Keen

1:20 Sam's books

  • Sam’s parenting experience
  • Divorce and ensuing problems

5:15 Playing the villain and the victim

  • A heated fight

12:16 The source of feelings of inadequacy

14:56 Changing the story

  • Sharing stories
  • Gaining understanding

18:36 Renovating the father son relationship

  • The high school years and beyond
  • Unconditional forgiveness

25:09 A need for the love of our children

  • Helping each other
  • Sharing emotional experiences

29:13 Sharing stories of relationship with parents

  • Challenges caused by untold stories

35:47 Never giving up on gifts and passions

40:04 A book for parents

  • A healing relationship between generations
  • Being open about who we are

43:37 Orthodox homes and a tendency to rebel
Self revelation

  • The myths we live out
  • Creating our own story

48:25 Changing paradigms

  • Asking deeper questions on our journey

Learn More


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1 reply
  1. Lucy
    Lucy says:

    Dear Dr. Seng,
    Building good relationships which your children, daughter or son is foremost , seeing them as individuals, not as extensions of yourself, and helping them through education, and exposure to different fields to use their talents, and their individual gifts to their best advantage, and by being, yourself, a loving parent who has time to listen to their ideas, and share with them in their joy with each of their accomplishments. In other words, Grow With Them!


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