Philosophy Archive

3 for Thursday: 3 Crash Courses on The Brain

There was a day when people thought with their hearts. Well, maybe they did not actually think with their literal hearts, but they thought the heart is where the mind could be found...anyway, you get the picture. If neuroscience has demonstrated anything, it is that the brain is where the mind is at today.

“Remember the Thalamus!” A Review of Andrew’s Brain

The narrator of E. L. Doctorow’s new novel is Andrew. Or, more accurately, Andrew’s brain. Or, perhaps most accurately, some consciousness that refers to itself as Andrew. It’s hard to get your bearings in this novel of neuroscience, because Andrew is the ultimate unreliable narrator: he knows that “there is nothing you can think

3 for Thursday: 3 Clues to Understanding Your Brain

In this week's 3 for Thursday, V.S. Ramachandran gives us three clues for understanding the brain. He also demonstrates that we all have Synesthesia.

3 for Thursday: 3 Challenges for My Students This Semester

Every semester I have a laundry list of things that I want my students to learn. My courses are in religious studies, religious history, and philosophy (undergraduate and graduate), so there is never a shortage of challenges for my students. Regardless of the class, these three below are part of my guiding philosophy of

The Rise of Neuroexistentialism

Last weekend I reviewed Patricia Churchland’s Touching a Nerve: The Self as Brain, which explores the reality of the brain behind what we know as “the self.” There is a Copernican moment occurring in brain science that raises serious questions about the nature of who and what we are, creating an potential existential crisis

Quoted: Iris Murdoch on Self-Delusion

“One should go easy on smashing other people’s lies. Better to concentrate on one’s own.” ~ Iris Murdoch, Henry and Cato

Book Review: Touching a Nerve

A pillar of most religious belief is the idea of the self as soul. There are always variations on this theme, but the immaterial side---especially in Western thought---is that which is the true you and that which makes spirituality possible. The self as soul has been assumed to be the case by theologians and

Rilke on Living the Questions

“Do not now seek the answers… Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.” – Rainer Maria Rilke, Letters to a Young Poet
In search of belief changing ideas