Sunday, 21 July 2013

A Great Debate

I'd like to recommend this debate. Can Science tell us Right from Wrong:

The answer is Yes, provided we interpret "Science" widely enough to include Reason, perhaps as in the German concept of Wissenschaft.

The speakers are: Sam Harris, Patricia Churchland, Peter Singer, Lawrence Krauss, Simon Blackburn and Steven Pinker, with Roger Bingham in the chair. It's quite a long listen, 2 hours including the questions at the end, but well worth devoting the time to.

Simon Blackburn provides the dissenting voice, as an old-style philosopher. For instance he argues that someone living in a drugged haze, or a deluded fool's paradise, could be said to be living a happy life, so who is to say their values are wrong?

Incidentally Lawrence Krauss cites a number of books and writers who could well be added to our book list: E. O. Wilson on Sociobiology, Franz de Waal on Reciprocity in Chimpanzees, Jacob Bronowski on Science and Human Vales, Philip K. Dick on Reality, Richard Feynman on the Habit of Truth, Aldous Huxley on Brave New World.

1 comment:

  1. Can Science tell us Right from Wrong: “The answer is Yes, provided we interpret "Science" widely enough to include Reason“
    I disagree with this comment for the reason that reason, reasoning, philosophy of inference or logic is a discipline distinctly different from “science”. But science use logic to differentiate right from wrong.

    Philosophy Forum 2013 established since 13/02/2013 and have completed 24 weeks of regular meetings at Isabel Blackman Centre in Hastings.
    We do analytical philosophy [including logic] for beginners and intermediate level. Admission is free.