The Human Instinct: How We Evolved to Have Reason, Consciousness, and Free Will [Audiobook]
17 April 2018, 13:33
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 10 hours and 6 minutes | 277.83MB
A radical, optimistic exploration of how humans evolved to develop reason, consciousness, and free will.
Lately, the most passionate advocates of the theory of evolution seem to present it as bad news. Scientists such as Richard Dawkins, Lawrence Krauss, and Sam Harris tell us that our most intimate actions, thoughts, and values are mere byproducts of thousands of generations of mindless adaptation. We are just one species among multitudes and therefore no more significant than any other living creature.
Now comes Brown University biologist Kenneth R. Miller to make the case that this view betrays a gross misunderstanding of evolution. Natural selection surely explains how our bodies and brains were shaped, but Miller argues that it's not a social or cultural theory of everything. In The Human Instinct, he rejects the idea that our biological heritage means that human thought, action, and imagination are predetermined, describing instead the trajectory that ultimately gave us reason, consciousness, and free will. A proper understanding of evolution, he says, reveals humankind in its glorious uniqueness - one foot planted firmly among all of the creatures we've evolved alongside and the other in the special place of self-awareness and understanding that we alone occupy in the universe.
Equal parts natural science and philosophy, The Human Instinct is a moving and powerful celebration of what it means to be human.
How to Die: An Ancient Guide to the End of Life [Audiobook]
17 April 2018, 12:20
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 2 hours and 29 minutes | 68.72MB
"It takes an entire lifetime to learn how to die", wrote the Roman Stoic philosopher Seneca (c. 4 BC-65 AD). He counseled readers to "study death always", and took his own advice, returning to the subject again and again in all his writings, yet he never treated it in a complete work. How to Die gathers in one volume, for the first time, Seneca's remarkable meditations on death and dying. Edited and translated by James S. Romm, How to Die reveals a provocative thinker and dazzling writer who speaks with a startling frankness about the need to accept death or even, under certain conditions, to seek it out.
Seneca believed that life is only a journey toward death and that one must rehearse for death throughout life. Here, he tells us how to practice for death, how to die well, and how to understand the role of a good death in a good life. He stresses the universality of death, its importance as life's final rite of passage, and its ability to liberate us from pain, slavery, or political oppression.
Featuring beautifully rendered new translations, How to Die also includes an enlightening introduction, notes, the original Latin texts, and an epilogue presenting Tacitus's description of Seneca's grim suicide.
Kantian Reason and Hegelian Spirit: The Idealistic Logic of Modern Theology [Audiobook]
16 April 2018, 09:27
2013 | M4B@64 kbps + PDF | 35 hrs 35 mins | 968.85MB
What role, if any, did Immanuel Kant and post-Kantian idealists such as Hegel play in shaping modern theology?
In Kantian Reason and Hegelian Spirit , noted theologian Gary Dorrien argues that Kantian and post-Kantian idealism were instrumental in the foundation and development of modern Christian theology. In this thought-provoking new work, Dorrien contends that while pre-Kantian rationalism offered a critique of religion's authority, it held no theory about the creative powers of mind, nor about the spiritual ground and unifying reality of freedom. As Kant provided both of these, he can be considered the originator of modern religious thought. Dorrien reveals how the post-Kantian idealists also played an important role, by fashioning other forms of liberal religious thought through alternative solutions to the Kantian problems of subjectivity and dualism.
Dorrien carefully dissects Kant's three critiques of reason and his moral conception of religion, and analyses the alternatives to Kant offered by Schleiermacher, Schelling, Hegel, and others. Dorrien goes on to provide a substantial account of the development of liberal theology in Britain , and the thought of Paul Tillich and Karl Barth, showing how these, as well as the dominant traditions of German liberal theology, and even the powerful critiques of liberal religious idealism proffered by Kierkegaard and the left-Hegelian school, were rooted in Kantian or post-Kantian idealism. Presenting these notoriously difficult arguments in a wonderfully lucid and accessible manner, Dorrien solidifies his reputation as a pre-eminent social ethicist. Kantian Reason and Hegelian Spirit offers deeply illuminating insights into the impact of 19 th -century philosophical idealism on contemporary religious thought.
Radical Sacrifice [Audiobook]
10 April 2018, 16:34
2018 | MP3@64 kbps | 6 hrs 56 mins | 191.0MB
A trenchant analysis of sacrifice as the foundation of the modern, as well as the ancient, social order
The modern conception of sacrifice is at once cast as a victory of self-discipline over desire and condescended to as destructive and archaic abnegation. But even in the Old Testament, the dual natures of sacrifice, embodying both ritual slaughter and moral rectitude, were at odds. In this analysis, Terry Eagleton makes a compelling argument that the idea of sacrifice has long been misunderstood.
Pursuing the complex lineage of sacrifice in a lyrical discourse, Eagleton focuses on the Old and New Testaments, offering a virtuosic analysis of the crucifixion, while drawing together a host of philosophers, theologians, and texts—from Hegel, Nietzsche, and Derrida to the Aeneid and The Wings of the Dove. Brilliant meditations on death and eros, Shakespeare and St. Paul, irony and hybridity explore the meaning of sacrifice in modernity, casting off misperceptions of barbarity to reconnect the radical idea to politics and revolution.
Humankind: Solidarity with Nonhuman People [Audiobook]
07 April 2018, 09:56
2018 | MP3@64 kbps | 8 hrs 22 mins | 230.22MB
A radical call for solidarity between humans and nonhumans
What is it that makes humans human? As science and technology challenge the boundaries between life and nonlife, between organic and inorganic, this ancient question is more timely than ever.
Acclaimed object-oriented philosopher Timothy Morton invites us to consider this philosophical issue as eminently political. In our relationship with nonhumans, we decide the fate of our humanity. Becoming human, claims Morton, actually means creating a network of kindness and solidarity with nonhuman beings, in the name of a broader understanding of reality that both includes and overcomes the notion of species.
Negotiating the politics of humanity is the first crucial step in reclaiming the upper scales of ecological coexistence and resisting corporations like Monsanto and the technophilic billionaires who would rob us of our kinship with people beyond our species.
Searching for Stars on an Island in Maine [Audiobook]
27 March 2018, 09:45
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 5 hrs 15 mins | 144.8MB
From the acclaimed author of Einstein's Dreams, an inspired, lyrical meditation on religion and science, with an exploration of the tension between our yearning for permanence and certainty versus modern scientific discoveries pointing to the impermanent and uncertain nature of the world
As a physicist, Alan Lightman has always held a purely scientific view of the world. Even as a teenager, experimenting in his own laboratory, he was impressed by the logic and materiality of the universe, which is governed by a small number of disembodied forces and laws. Those laws decree that all things in the world are material and impermanent. But one summer evening, while looking at the stars from a small boat at sea, Lightman was overcome by the overwhelming sensation that he was merging with something larger than himself - a grand and eternal unity, a hint of something absolute and immaterial.
Searching for Stars on an Island in Maine is the result of these seemingly contradictory impulses, written as an extended meditation on an island in Maine, where Lightman and his wife spend their summers. Framing the dialogue between religion and science as a contrast between absolutes and relatives, Lightman explores our human quest for truth and meaning and the different methods of religion and science in that quest. Along the way, he draws from sources ranging from St. Augustine's conception of absolute truth to Einstein's relativity, from a belief in the divine and eternal nature of stars to their discovered materiality and mortality, from the unity of the once indivisible atom to the multiplicity of subatomic particles and the recent notion of multiple universes.
What emerges is not only an understanding of the encounter between science and religion but also a profound exploration of the complexity of human existence.
On Hinduism [Audiobook]
25 March 2018, 10:00
2017 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 30 hrs 52 mins | 849.15MB
In this magisterial volume of essays, Wendy Doniger enhances our understanding of the ancient and complex religion to which she has devoted herself for half a century. This series of interconnected essays and lectures surveys the most critically important and hotly contested issues in Hinduism over 3,500 years, from the ancient time of the Vedas to the present day.
The essays contemplate the nature of Hinduism; Hindu concepts of divinity; attitudes concerning gender, control, and desire; the question of reality and illusion; and the impermanent and the eternal in the two great Sanskrit epics, the Ramayana and the Mahabharata. Among the questions Doniger considers are: Are Hindus monotheists or polytheists? How can atheists be Hindu, and how can unrepentant Hindu sinners find salvation? Why have Hindus devoted so much attention to the psychology of addiction? What does the significance of dogs and cows tell us about Hinduism? How have Hindu concepts of death, rebirth, and karma changed over the course of history? How and why does a pluralistic faith, remarkable for its intellectual tolerance, foster religious intolerance?
Doniger concludes with four concise autobiographical essays in which she reflects on her lifetime of scholarship, Hindu criticism of her work, and the influence of Hinduism on her own philosophy of life. On Hinduism is the culmination of over 40 years of scholarship from a renowned expert on one of the world's great faiths.
Skin in the Game: Hidden Asymmetries in Daily Life [Audiobook]
27 February 2018, 20:24
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 8 hrs 20 mins | 229.36MB
From the New York Times best-selling author of The Black Swan, a bold new work that challenges many of our long-held beliefs about risk and reward, politics and religion, finance and personal responsibility.
In his most provocative and practical book yet, one of the foremost thinkers of our time redefines what it means to understand the world, succeed in a profession, contribute to a fair and just society, detect nonsense, and influence others. Citing examples ranging from Hammurabi to Seneca, Antaeus the Giant to Donald Trump, Nassim Nicholas Taleb shows how the willingness to accept one's own risks is an essential attribute of heroes, saints, and flourishing people in all walks of life.
As always both accessible and iconoclastic, Taleb challenges long-held beliefs about the values of those who spearhead military interventions, make financial investments, and propagate religious faiths. Among his insights:
- For social justice, focus on symmetry and risk sharing. You cannot make profits and transfer the risks to others, as bankers and large corporations do. You cannot get rich without owning your own risk and paying for your own losses. Forcing skin in the game corrects this asymmetry better than thousands of laws and regulations.
- Ethical rules aren't universal. You're part of a group larger than you, but it's still smaller than humanity in general.
- Minorities, not majorities, run the world. The world is not run by consensus but by stubborn minorities asymmetrically imposing their tastes and ethics on others.
- You can be an intellectual yet still be an idiot. "Educated philistines" have been wrong on everything from Stalinism to Iraq to low carb diets.
- Beware of complicated solutions (that someone was paid to find). A simple barbell can build muscle better than expensive new machines.
The phrase "skin in the game" is one we have often heard but have rarely stopped to truly dissect. It is the backbone of risk management, but it's also an astonishingly complex worldview that, as Taleb shows in this book, applies to all aspects of our lives. As Taleb says, "The symmetry of skin in the game is a simple rule that's necessary for fairness and justice and the ultimate BS-buster," and "Never trust anyone who doesn't have skin in the game. Without it, fools and crooks will benefit, and their mistakes will never come back to haunt them."
The Fourth Cup: Unveiling the Mystery of the Last Supper and the Cross [Audiobook]
20 February 2018, 21:49
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 4 hrs 17 mins | 117.99MB
From the best-selling author of The Lamb's Supper and Signs of Life comes an illuminating work on the Catholic Eucharist and its link to the Jewish Passover meal.
Well-known Catholic theologian Dr. Scott Hahn explains Christ's Paschal sacrifice on the cross as the fulfillment of the traditional fourth cup used in the celebration of Passover, drawing symbolic parallels to the Last Supper and Christ's death on Calvary. Through his scholarly insights and important biblical connections, Mass will come alive for you as never before!
Midlife: A Philosophical Guide [Audiobook]
15 February 2018, 21:52
2018 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 4 hrs 35 mins | 126.54MB
Philosophical wisdom and practical advice for overcoming the problems of middle age.
How can you reconcile yourself with the lives you will never lead, with possibilities foreclosed, and with nostalgia for lost youth? How can you accept the failings of the past, the sense of futility in the tasks that consume the present, and the prospect of death that blights the future? In this self-help book with a difference, Kieran Setiya confronts the inevitable challenges of adulthood and middle age, showing how philosophy can help you thrive.
You will learn why missing out might be a good thing, how options are overrated, and when you should be glad you made a mistake. You will be introduced to philosophical consolations for mortality. And you will learn what it would mean to live in the present, how it could solve your midlife crisis, and why meditation helps.
Ranging from Aristotle, Schopenhauer, and John Stuart Mill to Virginia Woolf and Simone de Beauvoir, as well as drawing on Setiya's own experience, Midlife combines imaginative ideas, surprising insights, and practical advice. Writing with wisdom and wit, Setiya makes a wry but passionate case for philosophy as a guide to life.