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July 6, 2020 59 min

Each of us at some point in our lives will face traumatizing hardship — abuse or injury, lack or loss. And all of us must weather the planetwide effects of this pandemic, economic instability, systemic inequality, and social unrest…and find a way to live on with their consequences. Trauma isn’t evenly distributed. But it IS ubiquitous, and learning how to get on with our lives is one of our main tasks as human beings. 

From this hardship grows the best of us: our wisdom, compassion, creativity, and service. By understanding the psychology and neuroscience of the body-mind’s response to trauma, we gain potent insight into how to “live with living without” — how to be both incomplete and whole. 

Welcome to COMPLEXITY, the official podcast of the Santa Fe Institute. I’m your host, Michael Garfield, and each week we’ll bring you with us for far-ranging conversations with our worldwide network of rigorous researchers developing new frameworks to explain the deepest mysteries of the universe.

This week’s guest is best-selling author and journalist Laurence Gonzales, a four-time SFI Miller Scholar whose writing has won widespread recognition, including the Montaigne Medal, two National Magazine Awards, two Eric Hoffer Awards, and the Distinguished Service Award from the Society of Professional Journalists. In this episode we talk about his book, Surviving Survival: The Art and Science of Resilience — and the lessons therein for those living in the wake of trauma.

If you value our research and communication efforts, please consider making a recurring monthly donation at, or joining our Applied Complexity Network at Also, please consider rating and reviewing us at Apple Podcasts. Thank you for listening!

For more, visit Laurence’s Website & Bibliography.

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Podcast Theme Music by Mitch Mignano.

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