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Updated: 44 min 51 sec ago

The Biology of Good and Evil

Wed, 08/09/2017 - 8:42am

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Robert Sapolsky about his work with baboons, the opposition between reason and emotion, doubt, the evolution of the brain, the civilizing role of the frontal cortex, the illusion of free will, justice and vengeance, brain-machine interface, religion, drugs, and other topics.

Robert Sapolsky is a professor of biology and neurology at Stanford University and the recipient of a MacArthur Foundation genius grant. He is the author of A Primate’s Memoir, The Trouble with Testosterone, Why Zebras Don’t Get Ulcers, and Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst.

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Living With Violence

Sun, 08/06/2017 - 9:13am

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Gavin de Becker about the primacy of human intuition in the prediction and prevention of violence.

Gavin de Becker is a three-time presidential appointee whose pioneering work has changed the way the U.S. government evaluates threats to its highest officials. He is widely regarded as one of the world’s leading experts on the prediction and management of violence. His firm, Gavin de Becker and Associates, advises many of the world’s most prominent media figures, corporations, and law enforcement agencies on predicting violence, and it also serves regular citizens who are victims of domestic abuse and stalking. Gavin is the author of #1 New York Times bestseller The Gift of Fear.

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On Becoming a Better Person

Tue, 07/25/2017 - 10:42am

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with David Brooks about his book The Road to Character, the importance of words like “sin” and “virtue,” self-esteem vs. self-overcoming, the significance of keeping promises, honesty, President Trump, and other topics.

David Brooks is one of the nation’s leading writers and commentators. He is an op-ed columnist for The New York Times and appears regularly on the PBS NewsHour and Meet the Press. He is the bestselling author of The Social Animal,  Bobos in Paradise, and The Road to Character.

Twitter: @nytdavidbrooks

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Must We Accept a Nuclear North Korea?

Fri, 07/21/2017 - 10:11am

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Mark Bowden about the problem of a nuclear-armed North Korea.

Mark Bowden is the author of thirteen books, including the #1 New York Times bestseller Black Hawk Down. He reported at the Philadelphia Inquirer for twenty years and now writes for the Atlantic, Vanity Fair, and other magazines. He is also the writer in residence at the University of Delaware. His most recent book is Hue 1968: A Turning Point of the American War in Vietnam.

Article: “How to Deal with North Korea.” The Atlantic. (July/August, 2017).

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Triggered

Tue, 07/18/2017 - 11:40pm

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris and Scott Adams debate the character and competence of President Trump.

Scott Adams is the creator of Dilbert, one of the most popular comic strips of all time. He has been a full-time cartoonist since 1995, after 16 years as a technology worker for companies like Crocker National Bank and Pacific Bell. His many bestsellers include The Dilbert Principle, Dogbert’s Top Secret Management Handbook, and How To Fail At Almost Everything And Still Win Big. His forthcoming book is Win Bigly: Persuasion in a World Where Facts Don’t Matter.

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From Cells to Cities

Fri, 07/14/2017 - 8:29am

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Geoffrey West about how biological and social systems scale, the significance of fractals, the prospects of radically extending human life, the concept of “emergence” in complex systems, the importance of cities, the necessity for continuous innovation, and other topics.

Geoffrey West is a theoretical physicist whose primary interests have been in fundamental questions in physics and biology. He is a Senior Fellow at Los Alamos National Laboratory and a distinguished professor at the Sante Fe Institute, where he served as the president from 2005-2009. In 2006 he was named to Time’s list of “The 100 Most Influential People in the World.” He is the author of Scale: The Universal Laws of Growth, Innovation, Sustainability, and the Pace of Life in Organisms, Cities, Economies, and Companies.

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Is this the End of Europe?

Fri, 07/07/2017 - 10:15am

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Douglas Murray about his book The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam.

Douglas Murray is Associate Editor of the Spectator and writes frequently for a variety of other publications, including the Sunday Times, Standpoint and the Wall Street Journal. He has also given talks at both the British and European Parliaments and at the White House. He is the author of The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam.

 

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Landscapes of Mind

Fri, 06/30/2017 - 11:10pm

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Kevin Kelly about why it’s so hard to predict future technology, the nature of intelligence, the “singularity,” artificial consciousness, and other topics.

Kevin Kelly helped launch Wired magazine and was its executive editor for its first seven years. He has written for The New York Times, The Economist, Science, Time, and The Wall Street Journal among many other publications. His previous books include Out of Control, New Rules for the New Economy, Cool Tools, and What Technology Wants. His most recent book is The Inevitable: Understanding the 12 Technological Forces That Will Shape Our Future.

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Meme #10

Sun, 06/25/2017 - 11:14pm
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The Politics of Emergency

Fri, 06/23/2017 - 8:19am

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Fareed Zakaria about his career as a journalist, Samuel Huntington’s “clash of civilizations,” political partisanship, Trump, the health of the news media, the connection between Islam and intolerance, and other topics.

Fareed Zakaria is host of CNN’s flagship international affairs program — Fareed Zakaria GPS — a Washington Post columnist, a contributing editor at The Atlantic and a New York Times bestselling author. He was described in 1999 by Esquire Magazine as “the most influential foreign policy adviser of his generation.” In 2010, Foreign Policy named him one of the top 100 global thinkers. He is the author of The Future of Freedom, The Post-American World, and In Defense of a Liberal Education.

Twitter: @FareedZakaria

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The Unraveling

Sat, 06/03/2017 - 11:30pm

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with David Frum about political partisanship, recent security leaks, Trump’s foreign policy, the Russia investigation, Kathy Griffin’s joke, and other topics.

David Frum is a senior editor at The Atlantic. In 2001–02, he was a speechwriter for President George W. Bush.

Twitter: @davidfrum

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Meme #9

Wed, 05/31/2017 - 5:21pm
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The Road to Tyranny

Mon, 05/29/2017 - 4:46pm

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Timothy Snyder about his book On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century.

Timothy Snyder is a professor of history at Yale University and a permanent fellow at the Institute for Human Sciences in Vienna. He received his doctorate from the University of Oxford in 1997, where he was a British Marshall Scholar. Before joining the faculty at Yale in 2001, he held fellowships in Paris, Vienna, and Warsaw, and an Academy Scholarship at Harvard. He has spent some ten years in Europe, and speaks five and reads ten European languages. He has also written for The New York Review of Books, Foreign Affairs, The Times Literary Supplement, The Nation, and The New Republic as well as for The New York Times, The International Herald Tribune, The Wall Street Journal, and other newspapers. He is a member of the Committee on Conscience of the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. He is the author of several award-winning books including The Red Prince: The Secret Lives of a Habsburg Archduke, Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin, and Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning. His latest book, On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century reached #1 on the New York Times bestseller list for nonfiction.

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Persuasion and Control

Fri, 05/26/2017 - 10:51am

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Zeynep Tufekci about “surveillance capitalism,” the Trump campaign’s use of Facebook, AI-enabled marketing, the health of the press, Wikileaks, ransomware attacks, and other topics.

Zeynep Tufekci is a contributing opinion writer at the New York Times, associate professor at the University of North Carolina School of Information and Library Science, and a faculty associate at the Harvard Berkman Center for Internet and Society. She is the author of Twitter and Tear Gas: The Power and Fragility of Networked Protest.

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The Moral Complexity of Genetics

Mon, 05/22/2017 - 10:45am

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Siddhartha Mukherjee about the human desire to understand and manipulate heredity, the genius of Gregor Mendel, the ethics of altering our genes, the future of genetic medicine, patent issues in genetic research, controversies about race and intelligence, and other topics.

Siddhartha Mukherjee is a cancer physician and researcher. He is an assistant professor of medicine at Columbia University and a staff cancer physician at the CU/NYU Presbyterian Hospital. A former Rhodes scholar, he graduated from Stanford University, University of Oxford (where he received a PhD studying cancer-causing viruses) and from Harvard Medical School. His laboratory focuses on discovering new cancer drugs using innovative biological methods. He has published articles and commentary in such journals as Nature, New England Journal of Medicine, Neuron and the Journal of Clinical Investigation and in publications such as the New York Times, The New Yorker, and the New Republic. His work was nominated for Best American Science Writing, 2000. He won the Pulitzer Prize for his book The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer. His most recent book is The Gene: An Intimate History.

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The Path to Impeachment

Thu, 05/18/2017 - 2:30pm

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Anne Applebaum and Juliette Kayyem about the unfolding Russia scandal in the White House.

 

 

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Ask Me Anything 7

Fri, 05/12/2017 - 1:41pm

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris answers questions from listeners about the illusion of the self, his podcast with Charles Murray, the future of brain-machine interfaces, his BJJ practice, reasoning with the extreme Left, mindfulness and parenting, his experience of going back to school after a long break, transgenderism, increasing one’s vocabulary, and other topics.

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What Should We Eat?

Sat, 05/06/2017 - 1:33pm

In this episode of the Waking Up podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Gary Taubes about his career as a science journalist, the difficulty of studying nutrition and public health, the growing epidemics of obesity and diabetes, the role that hormones play in weight gain, the controversies surrounding his work, and other topics.

Gary Taubes is the author of Why We Get Fat; Good Calories, Bad Calories; and The Case Against Sugar. He is a former staff writer for Discover and a correspondent for the journal Science. His writing has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic, and Esquire, and has been included in numerous “Best of” anthologies, including The Best of the Best American Science Writing (2010). He has received three Science in Society Journalism Awards from the National Association of Science Writers. He is the recipient of a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Investigator Award in Health Policy Research and a co-founder of the Nutrition Science Initiative (NuSI).

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Meme #8

Wed, 05/03/2017 - 10:43pm
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