Gregory Bern’s has just released a new book: Self Delusion: The Neuroscience of How We Invent – And Reinvent – Our Identities. I had the honour of reading the book before publication and discussing it with Berns himself. Interested in listening to the conversation? You can find it on the On Humans –website, or listenContinue reading “The Harmful Delusion of a Singular Self ~ Gregory Berns”
Author Archives: Ilari Mäkelä
Distorting Darwinism – or What Evolution Does not Tell us About Humans
Evolution can shed light on the human condition. But scepticism is needed when bleak claims are declared from the armchair. In this essay, published in the Skeptic, I explore ways in which Darwinism has been distorted by forcing evolutionary terminology onto the human psyche.
Erich Maria Remarque on the Psychology of War
In “All Quiet on the Western Front”, the German novelist portraits war as both inexplicably horrible and surprisingly humane.
Darwinian Ethics, Aced: A Review of “Origins of Morality” by Dennis Krebs
Dennis Krebs’ excellent overview of evolutionary moral psychology succeeds in celebrating Darwin as source for understanding ethics.
Cultural Training: Lessons from Brain Sciences
A book chapter I had the privilege of co-authoring with Professor Han Shihui, a leading figure in the field of cultural neuroscience.
Virtues in War: A Review of “A Cooperative Species” by Bowles and Gintis
Humans are not born selfish. But why? Bowles and Gintis suggest that Darwin was right: altruism is good the group. But this leads them to the troubling suggestion that virtue evolved in times of war.
Is it acceptable to wish harm on another person?
Another Reddit answer. Coincided with Trump’s visit to the hospital. Touches on various ways to see ethical dilemmas, as well as the negative health effects of cultivating hostility. Question: Let’s say a person dying will indirectly cause me to be happier. I say that there is nothing wrong with simply wanting that person to dieContinue reading “Is it acceptable to wish harm on another person?”
Podcast: Mindfulness and Life
A discussion I had with my friend Carson Mulligan for his podcast Profiles. We discuss meditation practice, vipassana retreats, science of mindfulness, and the role of attentiveness in daily life. Link
Is Everything About Violence?
This was originally a Reddit answer I gave to the question in the title. It touches briefly on issues such as human nature, origins of war, and decline in violence.
What is Philosophy? Some Reflections and Eight Answers
This longer introductory essay was part of a series of essays I composed in spring of 2020 as introductions to an new student of mine. Part I discusses different suggestions to “what is philosophy”.