The Emotions You SHOULDN’T Blame Anyone For Having

In the last several posts I’ve written about ethics, I have been talking in part about the various ways in which we are ethically responsible for our emotions and for reasoning through them. One thing worth to make explicit, which I simply assumed people would understand, is that I have been talking in those posts [Read More...]

Lou Marinoff Explains Philosophical Counseling

Lou Marinoff is the Chair of the Department of Philosophy at the City College of New York and the author of Plato, Not Prozac! He is a founder of the American Philosophical Practitioners Association. He appeared on Massimo Pigliucci’s Rationally Speaking podcast two days ago to explain the concept of philosophical counseling. It’s a fascinating and [Read More...]

Atheists Perceived As Less Trustworthy Than Rapists??

I may have underestimated in the past just how bad misperceptions of us are: Consider one of the experiments. One hundred and five students read a brief vignette about a man who fails to take responsibility when he hits a parked van with his car, and then pockets money from a wallet he finds on [Read More...]

Thinking According To Scale

PZ and Crommunist offer nice denunciations of the significance of a graphic which has been going around the internet which concludes that the chance of any given individual alive today ever existing was 1 in 102,685,000.  Below the fold is the graphic, key snippets of their remarks and the lesson to draw for how we should consider [Read More...]

What Are Monkeys', Chimps', and Dogs' Thoughts Like?

In this audio file from Philosophy Bites, philosopher of mind Tim Crane discusses what philosophical and psychological methods there are for potentially figuring out what kinds of minds and thoughts animals might have. He has the most to say about chimps, monkeys, and dogs. He is the author of The Mechanical Mind: A Philosophical Introduction to Minds, Machines and Mental Representation,Elements [Read More...]

Mimicking the Brain in Silicon

MIT researchers make progress towards a potentially amazing accomplishment: For decades, scientists have dreamed of building computer systems that could replicate the human brain’s talent for learning new tasks. MIT researchers have now taken a major step toward that goal by designing a computer chip that mimics how the brain’s neurons adapt in response to [Read More...]

Is Oxytocin The "Morality Molecule"

That is Paul Zak’s theory. The video is fascinating: Now I just need to find 8 people to hug me everyday. (via Philosopher’s Haze, who you can read for a summary if you cannot watch the video for some reason). Patricia Churchland’s book Braintrust: What Neuroscience Tells Us about Morality explores the role of Oxycotin in morality [Read More...]

You Are Not So Smart

The website You Are Not So Smart does an outstanding job of explaining all sorts of cognitive errors for a lay audience in an engaging way. Last week Dave McRaney, the site’s author, released a book version called You Are Not So Smart: Why You Have Too Many Friends on Facebook, Why Your Memory Is Mostly [Read More...]

Judging Yourself Truthfully

One of the most important mental disciplines is to assess yourself honestly. We are so naturally susceptible to judging ourselves according to both the flattery of our admirers and of our own ego, on the one hand, and the disdain of our detractors and our own irrational fears, on the other. It takes a lot [Read More...]


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