cognition
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How it evolved, what we do with it, futures; And otherwise interesting stuff
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The Grasshopper - Third Edition - Broadview Press

“Philosophers are not generally known for fine writing, but once in a generation or two a book appears out of nowhere, unclassifiable, inspired, amazing, mesmerizing, wonderful, classic … ” — Philosophy and Literature

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How David Hume Helped Me Solve My Midlife Crisis - The Atlantic

How David Hume Helped Me Solve My Midlife Crisis - The Atlantic | cognition | Scoop.it
David Hume, the Buddha, and a search for the Eastern roots of the Western Enlightenment
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"This story may help explain Hume’s ideas. It unquestionably exemplifies them. All of the characters started out with clear, and clashing, identities—the passionate Italian missionary and the urbane French priest, the Tibetan king and lamas, the Siamese king and monks, the skeptical young Scot.

But I learned that they were all much more complicated, unpredictable, and fluid than they appeared at first, even to themselves. Both Hume and the Buddha would have nodded sagely at that thought. "

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Candyland and the Nature of the Absurd - Existential Comics

Candyland and the Nature of the Absurd - Existential Comics | cognition | Scoop.it
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Experimental Philosophy and the Notion of the Self - HeadCon '13: Part VIII | Edge.org

hat experimental philosophers tend to do is to go after questions that are traditionally associated with philosophy but to go after them using the methods that have been traditionally associated with psychology

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John Searle on Ludwig Wittgenstein: Section 1

Bryan Magee talks to John Searle about the legacy of Ludwig Wittgenstein; ranging from his early work, the Tractatus, to his posthumously published, Philosophical Investigations.

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Religion Without God by Ronald Dworkin | The New York Review of Books

Religion Without God by Ronald Dworkin | The New York Review of Books | cognition | Scoop.it
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The new religious wars are now really culture wars. They are not just about scientific history—about what best accounts for the development of the human species, for instance—but more fundamentally about the meaning of human life and what living well means.

As we shall see, logic requires a separation between the scientific and value parts of orthodox godly religion. When we separate these properly we discover that they are fully independent: the value part does not depend—cannot depend—on any god’s existence or history. If we accept this, then we formidably shrink both the size and the importance of the wars. They would no longer be culture wars. This ambition is utopian: violent and nonviolent religious wars reflect hatreds deeper than philosophy can address. But a little philosophy might help.

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21st Century Enlightenment

21st Century Enlightenment | cognition | Scoop.it
Matthew Taylor explores the meaning of 21st century enlightenment, and how the idea might help us meet the challenges we face today. At the heart of this t
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Xaos's curator insight, December 24, 2012 2:15 AM

Matthew Taylor explores the meaning of 21st century enlightenment, and how the idea might help us meet the challenges we face today.

At the heart of this talk about the future prospects for the human race is the question ‘can we go on like this?’ Will the ideas and values which transformed our world in the last two centuries be sufficient to find solutions to the challenges we now face or do we need new ways of thinking?

The focus on 21st century enlightenment invites us to return to core principles of autonomy, universalism and humanism, restoring dimensions which have been lost and seeing new ways to fulfill these ideals.

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Manhood Of Humanity The Science and Art of Human Engineering By Alfred Korzybski

The question we have, therefore, to consider first of all is
fundamentally: What is Man? What is a man? What is a human
being? What is the defining or characteristic mark of humanity?
To this question two answers and only two have been given in the
course of the ages, and they are both of them current to-day. One
of the answers is biological—man is an animal, a certain kind of
animal; the other answer is a mixture partly biological and partly
mythological or partly biological and partly philosophical—man
is a combination or union of animal with something supernatural.
An important part of my task will be to show that both of these
answers are radically wrong and that, beyond all things else, they
are primarily responsible for what is dismal in the life and history
of humankind. This done, the question remains: What is Man? I
hope to show clearly and convincingly that the answer is to be
found in the patent fact that human beings possess in varying
degrees a certain natural faculty or power or capacity which
serves at once to give them their appropriate dignity as human
beings and to discriminate them, not only from the minerals and
the plants but also from the world of animals, this peculiar or
[004] characteristic human faculty or power or capacity I shall callChapter I. Introduction 11
the time-binding faculty or time-binding power or time-binding
capacity. What I mean by time-binding will be clearly and fully
explained in the course of the discussion, and when it has been
made clear, the question—What Is Man?—will be answered by
saying that man is a being naturally endowed with time-binding capacity—that a human being is a time-binder—that men,
women and children constitute the time-binding class of life.

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Postcard from Zizek: Less than Nothing

Postcard from Zizek: Less than Nothing | cognition | Scoop.it

Today, Big Think hosts their exclusive interview with Slavoj Žižek on the publication of his new book Less Than Nothing: Hegel and the Shadow of Dialectical Materialism. In this 3-minute segment, Žižek discusses some of the key issues that frame his more than 1,000-page mega-book on Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, who Žižek considers his most important influence.

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Forget mindfulness, stop trying to find yourself and start faking it

Forget mindfulness, stop trying to find yourself and start faking it | cognition | Scoop.it
Why is the history of Chinese philosophy now the most popular course at Harvard? Top tips on how to become a better person according to Confucius and co

Via Wildcat2030
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nukem777's curator insight, April 16, 2016 5:04 AM
Food for the soul :)
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Hear Michel Foucault’s Lecture “The Culture of the Self,” Presented in English at UC Berkeley (1983)

Hear Michel Foucault’s Lecture “The Culture of the Self,” Presented in English at UC Berkeley (1983) | cognition | Scoop.it
United States in the last years of his life, particularly his time as a lecturer at UC Berkeley, proved to be extraordinarily productive in the development of his theoretical understanding of what he saw as the central question facing the contemporary West: the question of the self.

Via Xaos
FastTFriend's insight:

From text:

"The technique of confession, central even to secular psychoanalysis, informs a subjectivity that, for Foucault, always develops under the ever-watchful eyes of normalizing institutions. But in “The Culture of the Self,” Foucault reaches back to ancient Greek conceptions of “care of the self” (epimelieia beautou) to locate a subjectivity derived from a different tradition—a counterpoint to religious confessional and Freudian subjectivities and one he has discussed in terms of the technique of “self writing.” (The Care of the Self also happens to be the subtitle of the third volume of Foucault’s History of Sexuality, and “The Culture of the Self” the title of its second chapter.)"

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Wittgenstein,Tolstoy and the Folly of Logical Positivism | Issue 103 | Philosophy Now

Wittgenstein,Tolstoy and the Folly of Logical Positivism | Issue 103 | Philosophy Now | cognition | Scoop.it
Stuart Greenstreet explains how analytical philosophy got into a mess.

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Hannah Arendt Discusses Philosophy, Politics & Eichmann in Rare 1964 TV Interview

Hannah Arendt Discusses Philosophy, Politics & Eichmann in Rare 1964 TV Interview | cognition | Scoop.it
Hannah Arendt’s work has come under some critical fire lately, what with the release of the Margarethe Von Trotta-directed biopic, starring German actress Barbara Sukowa as the controversial political theorist.
FastTFriend's insight:

While acknowledging Arendt’s flaws, Berkowitz seeks to exonerate the best-known concept that emerged from her work on Eichmann’s trial, the “banality of evil.” While it can be comforting to have an interpreter explain, and defend, the work of a major, controversial, thinker, there is no intellectual substitute for engaging with the work itself. In the age of the media interview—radio, television, podcast and otherwise—one can usually see and hear an author explain her views in person. And so we have the interview above (in German with English subtitles), in which Arendt sits with television presenter and journalist Gunter Gaus for a German program called Zur Person (The Person), a Charlie Rose-like show that featured celebrities, important thinkers, and politicians (including an appearance by Henry Kissinger).

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Daniel Dennett: 'I don't like theory of mind' – interview

Daniel Dennett: 'I don't like theory of mind' – interview | cognition | Scoop.it
American philosopher Daniel Dennett talks to Carole Jahme about faith, science, empathy – and Short Circuit

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This week American philosopher Daniel Dennett, a long-time stalwart of Darwin@LSE, shared his wisdom with a lunchtime crowd in the London School of Economics' Old Theatre. Since fellow philosopher Helena Cronin's 1995 launch of the LSE hub (which is devoted to evolution's maxims) Dennett has been a regular guest. His mission this week to persuade the public that cultural evolution exists and is facilitated due to our hierarchical nature, where those at the top tell others what to think and do. Dennett rhetorically asked, "Does culture make us smart enough to have minds?"

From studying the human ability to become good at things without understanding, which then leads to our acquisition of the cognisance to comprehend, via our competence, Dennett favours the theory (first suggested by Richard Dawkins) that our social learning has given us a second information highway (in addition to the genetic highway) where the transmission of variant cultural information (memes) takes place via differential replication. Software viruses, for example, can be understood as memes, and as memes evolve in complexity, so does human cognition: "The mind is the effect, not the cause."

Not all philosophers, including Cronin, agree that natural selection shapes culture. But Dennett goes even further, describing a spectrum where, at one end, memes are authorless and free floating and at the opposite end they are guided by forethought, are less Darwinian and more purposeful, such as statistics, computer software and poetry. "Natural selection is not gene centrist and nor is biology all about genes, our comprehending minds are a result of our fast evolving culture. Words are memes that can be spoken and words are the best example of memes. Words have a genealogy and it's easier to trace the evolution of a single word than the evolution of a language."

Because Dennett is an approachable, kind man, once his lecture finished I proposed accompanying him to his lunch appointment and asking a few questions en route. Luckily, he agreed.


Via Wildcat2030
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danijel drnić's curator insight, March 25, 2013 8:15 AM

..i da li je samo jezik slučajno ili namjerno sredstvo kojime se čitav svemir koristi. Jezik, govor, nije samo specifičan za ljude. Komunikacija se odvija na svim nivoima. 

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Was Wittgenstein Right?

Was Wittgenstein Right? | cognition | Scoop.it
The man who insisted that Western philosophy was based in confusion and wishful thinking is not a popular one among philosophers. But he should not be dismissed.
FastTFriend's insight:

Insightful in writing (from "The Blue Book"):

 

Our craving for generality has [as one] source … our preoccupation with the method of science. I mean the method of reducing the explanation of natural phenomena to the smallest possible number of primitive natural laws; and, in mathematics, of unifying the treatment of different topics by using a generalization. Philosophers constantly see the method of science before their eyes, and are irresistibly tempted to ask and answer in the way science does. This tendency is the real source of metaphysics, and leads the philosopher into complete darkness. I want to say here that it can never be our job to reduce anything to anything, or to explain anything. Philosophy really is “purely descriptive.

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Scientists Probe Human Nature--and Discover We Are Good, After All: Scientific American

Scientists Probe Human Nature--and Discover We Are Good, After All: Scientific American | cognition | Scoop.it
Recent studies find our first impulses are selfless...

 

A new set of studies provides compelling data allowing us to analyze human nature not through a philosopher’s kaleidoscope or a TV producer’s camera, but through the clear lens of science. These studies were carried out by a diverse group of researchers from Harvard and Yale—a developmental psychologist with a background in evolutionary game theory, a moral philosopher-turned-psychologist, and a biologist-cum-mathematician—interested in the same essential question: whether our automatic impulse—our first instinct—is to act selfishly or cooperatively.

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Brainy Trees, Metaphorical Forests: On Neuroscience, Embodiment, and Architecture | Neuroanthropology

Brainy Trees, Metaphorical Forests: On Neuroscience, Embodiment, and Architecture | Neuroanthropology | cognition | Scoop.it

Inspiration and interpretation are inevitable. As metaphor is basic to what we do, so emerging results in neuroscience will be taken well beyond the intentions and even meanings of their authors. Much caution and critique will be needed. Yet at the same time, I want to preserve a space for this other mantle, from science to art and humanism. To creation and design and expression.

 

A revolution based on neuroscience? No. A recognition of our bodies and experiences and senses? Yes. And thus much closer to metaphors that inspire us every day. Like HOME or WARMTH. And maybe even a tree or two.


Via Sakis Koukouvis, Wildcat2030
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