Life’s Secret: The Purpose and Pursuit of Happiness

Is there a purpose to life? Nietzsche teased “only the English strive for happiness”. Are we right to focus on practical goals and abandon any deeper purpose? Or is a goal independent of our everyday pursuits essential to our being? Watch now.

Life

Secrets of the Mind: with Roger Penrose, Iain McGilchrist, and Nicholas Humphrey

We have no explanation of consciousness. Yet from the origins of life to the workings of the atom, science has provided answers when none were thought possible.  Might we be about to crack consciousness as well?  An impossible fantasy or an exciting adventure for mankind? Watch Secrets of the Mind.

The Panel: Joanna Kavenna asks eminent physicist Roger Penrose, Master and His Emissary author Iain McGilchrist, and evolutionary psychologist Nicholas Humphrey to explain the all-seeing ‘I’.

secrets

Escaping the Moral Maze – with John Bird, Thomas Pogge, and Steven Rose.

Despite the decline in religion most of us remain attached to morality. Yet as the Moral Maze there are an unlimited number of contradictory ‘moral’ outlooks. Should we recognize morality as a figleaf for prejudice? Or is this to give up on a capacity that makes us human? Watch here

moralmaze

Applied philosophy podcasts on SoundCloud

JAPP podcastsThe Society for Applied Philosophy hosts an Annual Lecture each year inviting a prominent member of its community to discuss his / her work. The lecture, published in the Journal for Applied Philosophy, is normally followed by an interview giving the lecturer the opportunity to discuss the topic further. The interviews are made available to the public in the form of a podcast, which can be streamed from the Society for Applied Philosophy Soundcloud page.

Visit the page to hear leading experts discuss:

  • Militant atheism
  • Poverty and gender equity
  • Human rights
  • Universal healthcare
  • Normativity and public policy

Dangerously Big Ideas: Do we need grand theories?

Our culture and philosophy is sceptical of grand theories and big ideas, which we think best left to Parisian taxi drivers. But aren’t grand theories unavoidable? Would it not be better to explore and embrace big ideas rather than pretend they have been banished? Or is this the route to dangerous nonsense?

In this latest video from IAI TV, Historian of ideas Hannah Dawson, philosopher and Closure theorist Hilary Dawson, and Professor of Contemporary Literature and Thought Robert Eaglestone are thinking big.

Dangerously Big Ideas: Do we need grand theories?

Big Ideas

Mind & Language symposium: Consciousness, Information and the Visual Streams

Visit the Brains blog over the next couple of weeks to take part in a symposium on Wayne Wu’s “Against Division: Consciousness, Information and the Visual Streams”. Commentaries by David Kaplan (Macquarie), Pete Mandik (William Paterson), and Thomas Schenk (Erlangen-Nuremberg).

Wu’s article has just been published in the September 2014 issue of Mind & Language and is free to access until the end of the year.

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wu[1]According to the influential dual systems model of visual processing (Milner & Goodale 1995/2006, Goodale & Milner 2004), information present in the dorsal processing stream does not contribute to the specific contents of conscious visual experience. “Visual phenomenology,” A.D. Milner and Melvyn Goodale write, “can arise only from processing in the ventral stream, processing that we have linked with recognition and perception…. Visual-processing modules in the dorsal stream, despite the complex computations demanded by their role in the control of action, are not normally available to awareness” (Milner & Goodale 1995/2006, 202). In his article, Wayne argues that certain types of information arising in the dorsal stream, contrary to Milner and Goodale, do play a role in realizing the contents of visual experience. In particular, he argues that information carried in dorsal stream areas such as VIP and LIP support awareness of visual spatial constancy across saccadic eye-movements. Wayne also adduces evidence that dorsal stream areas play a role in conscious visual motion and depth perception.

Philosophy Bites Back: can science do away with philosophy?

From neuroscience to cosmology, Hawking to Dawkins, many argue science can do away with philosophy. Yet science is replete with philosophical  puzzles. Should we see science as one metaphysics amongst others? Bestselling author Lawrence Krauss squares off against philosophers Angie Hobbs and Mary Midgleyhttp://iai.tv/video/philosophy-bites-back

Phil bites back