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Philosophy

Murakami’s Talking Cat

“The pure present is an ungraspable advance of the past devouring the future. In truth, all sensation is already memory”. – Haruki Murakami. A talking cat – clearly an absurdity but in many ways no less absurd than that any of the mad parade of human civilisation and the shared confusion and beauty of this […]

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Philosophy

Nietzsche as Teacher

More important, I feel, than any particular aphorism or penetrating psychological and historical insight from Nietzsche is that he teaches us how to think. Much the same might be said of Bach; the patterns and complex symmetries of logical abstraction he defined and refined do not (only) instruct us in the use of any particular […]

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Philosophy

Extraterrestrial Linguistics?

Context: Listening for Extraterrestrial Blah Blah I doubt whether human beings are even a quarter of a percent as smart as we think we are. The indefinitely-extensible properties of logic and mathematics suggest that languages and intelligence on the higher end of the (Kardashev) scale are quite plausibly far too sophisticated for us to interpret […]

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Philosophy

The Release from Deception

There was a time when I used to stare into sunsets and ask the sun what it was. I would raise my eyes to the starry skies and silently whisper to myself that such vaulted majesty just can not be real. I spent years learning, accumulating knowledge and deep intuitions about the stars, the galaxies, […]

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Philosophy

Can Robots possess Legal Rights?

Context: Experts Sign Open Letter Slamming Europe’s Proposal to Recognise Robots as Legal Persons Robots might be a bit of a stretch for asserting personhood although it does remain somewhat indistinct as to where and when awareness, experience or sentience arise in recognisably “living” things. We may (following, at a distance, something I once read […]

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Philosophy

Narrative Predestination

I read “Lord of the Rings” twice at age 9. I imagine this must have had some kind of formative downstream consequence for my own cognitive grammar, conceptual vocabulary and integrated perception of those grander narratives and historical tides within which we all must necessarily learn to swim if we are to survive and thrive […]

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Philosophy

If my life was a novel…

“In the end, we all become stories.” – Margaret Atwood My life would not be a book so much as it would be a box of scattered paper fragments. Each fragment containing a narrow aperture on the life and experience or learning I have undergone. Each narrow aperture, a window on a moment and a […]

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Philosophy

Creativity is Intelligence

Creativity is indeed a sign or marker of intelligence. There are many kinds of intelligence, though, and creative intelligence is as often shunned as celebrated. This represents something of an intractable enigma: the creative insights upon which innovation, technological metamorphosis and revelatory insight so foundationally depend simultaneously represent something of a psychological challenge and existential […]

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Philosophy

Social Media: Lies and Gullibility

Context: Social media users more likely to believe misinformation The adoption of a “social” communications technology walks hand in hand with the suspension of disbelief as to the veracity of curated information broadcast on that channel; a wilful or semi-unconscious cognitive entrapment as progressive desensitisation to serial falsehoods. This may have taken a particular shape […]

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Philosophy

Ignorance as Enemy of Knowledge

“The greatest enemy of knowledge is not ignorance, it is the illusion of knowledge.” – Stephen Hawking …and yet, how often is ignorance really little more than the illusion of knowledge? We can quite easily  observe (very many) belief systems masquerading as factual, informed knowledge in all spheres of human life. Scientific knowledge is a […]

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Philosophy

Global Development as Road to Peace?

As a species, we find it difficult to step beyond competitive biases into authentically (and sustainably) collaborative behaviours oriented towards Global development. The rank antitheses of adversarial conflict and shared sense of community (as self-identity) are so deeply entangled in our histories, our cultures, our linguistic assumptions and our psychological experience that effective and enduring […]

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Philosophy

Creative Entropy

Creativity requires entropy, novelty, the unexpected. We invoke new things, new concepts and new realities as a function of our experience of difference and diversity, of randomness. Brains rapidly desensitise to repetition and this is why it is a foundationally important property of any environment to possess or manifest a threshold of uncontrolled, unbounded or […]