The following list offers questions a guest would choose to answer from, constituting the core parts of a typical anyhumans episode or self-submitted recording. To participate in an episode, the guest would send a list of selected questions to their host (during slot sign-up on Calendly) in advance of the conversation, allowing both to be prepared. For those who are averse to interviews or have very busy schedules, an alternative is to send in self-recorded answers to any of these questions. You are welcome to contribute more questions to this general list by emailing at any time.

Part 1: Notion of good and problem solving approaches 

A. Theoretical

  1. What is your conception of “doing good”?
  2. Do you see people as inherently good, with character or personality flaws arising mostly from errors made by adults in their childhood development, or are people who commit bad deeds morally responsible for them, exclusively? Is there a grey area, and if so, how do you perceive it?
  3. What is the “root” of evil?
  4. How do you define philanthropy? What, in your opinion, is the current state of philanthropy in your region or country?
  5. In your view, what are some highly neglected areas that you wish more people would focus on?
  6. Do you consider yourself to be spiritual? Does religion or lack thereof play a role in how you see the world around you? Please elaborate as you see fit.

B. Practical

  1. Passion: Do you ever get emotionally invested in helping solve an issue in a particular way, such that alternate solutions are seen as detrimental? What feelings arise when you think of those proposing alternate approaches? Do any specific examples come to mind?
  2. Mindset: Do you classify yourself as more of an open-minded problem solver (with a “scout mindset”), or do you more often possess a “fighting spirit” and know exactly what needs to be done (a “soldier mindset”)? Any particular instances you’d like to share?
  3. Competition vs. collaboration: do you generally feel more content when you collaborate with others on tackling a challenge, or are you incentivized by the prospect of competing with them to arrive at a solution quicker? Does their affiliation and/or belonging to the same circle or group matter, and if so, how? Please bring up any example(s) from anecdotes in your life.
  4. Compassion vs. retaliation: Do you balance your feelings of compassion vs. a desire for retaliation in witnessing injustices in this world? If so, how would you describe your natural instincts and what you ultimately choose to do or say?
    • On a scale of 1-10 in the “least retaliatory” to “most retaliatory” toward those whom you perceive as malevolent actors, where would you place yourself? How has this manifested itself in your deeds or words in the past?
    • On a scale of 1-10 in the “least compassionate” to “most compassionate” to individuals who may not have agency to decline an order that ultimately inflicts pain on other living beings, where would you place yourself? Does it matter for you whether the (intentional or unintentional) act of inflicting pain is near-term and highly visible or long-term and invisible? How?
  5. Need: Is there a local (collective or individual) need in your community, within your social network, or faced by someone you personally know, that would benefit from more resources (time, money, or others’ skillsets)?Who is currently involved with or is helping address this need, if anyone?
  6. Urgency: on a scale of 1-10, how urgent would you say the above-stated need is (with 10 being the most urgent)? How does this translate into absolute timeframes? What emotion(s) do you actively feel in considering these timeframes?

Part 2: Questions about guest’s “raison d’être”

  1. Please describe the cause (either a need/problem or an initiative/solution, such as a social entrepreneurship project) you are most passionate about and your journey (in chronological or experiential order) to seeing it at this high level of importance. 
  2. What do you think a community of people bound by a pledge to practice “collective giving” in small groups could do about this cause? 
Image generated with DALL·E 2 prompt: “An impressionist painting of a very old man in a brown hat with a long beard, holding a microphone, answering a question for a podcast, with plants in the background”