Category Archives: Zeitgeist

Ginger Campbell is doing a series on consciousness

I’ve highlighted Dr. Ginger Campbell’s excellent Brain Science Podcast before.  It’s an invaluable resource for anyone interested in the science of the brain.  Many of the books and concepts I’ve highlighted here over the years, I first heard about on … Continue reading

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The reflex and the feeling

Stephen T. Asma and Rami Gabriel have an interesting article at Aeon on emotions.  Their main thesis is that many emotions are biological, universal, and rooted in evolution.  And that they arise through “the strata of consciousness”: the physiological, the … Continue reading

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The Anthropocene is a conceit of human exceptionalism

Peter Brannen has an interesting piece in the Atlantic, pointing out that the Anthropocene is more of a geological event rather than an epoch, at least so far. Humans are now living in a new geological epoch of our own … Continue reading

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Detecting consciousness in animals and machines, inside-out

An interesting paper came up in my feeds this weekend: Indicators and Criteria of Consciousness in Animals and Intelligent Machines: An Inside-Out Approach.  The authors put forth a definition of consciousness, and then criteria to test for it, although they … Continue reading

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Higher order theories of consciousness

I’ve posted on HOT (higher order thought theories of consciousness) before, but there’s a new paper out covering the basics of these types of theories.  Since first reading about HOT many months ago, the framework has been growing on me.  … Continue reading

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The problems with panpsychism

Late last week, there was a clash between philosophers on Twitter over panpsychism.  This was followed by Philip Goff, an outspoken proponent of panpsychism, authoring a blog post arguing that we shouldn’t require evidence for it.  This week, Susan Schneider … Continue reading

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Time to dump the concept of cognition?

An interesting paper came up in my Twitter feed.  Neuroscientist Paul Cisek notes that many of our current models on how the mind works come from dualistic traditions, as well as psychological ones that were heavily influenced by dualism.  He … Continue reading

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Consciousness science undetermined

An interesting paper by Matthias Michel on the underdetermined nature of theories of consciousness. Consciousness scientists have not reached consensus on two of the most central questions in their field: first, on whether consciousness overflows reportability; second, on the physical … Continue reading

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To perceive is to predict

Daniel Yon has an interesting piece at Aeon on how our brains predict the outcomes of our actions, shaping reality into what we expect, and why we see what we believe, rather than the other way around. This idea is … Continue reading

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Rule out plant consciousness for the right reasons

In recent years, there’s been a resurgence in the old romantic sentiment that maybe plants are conscious.  I hadn’t realized that an entire sub-field had formed called Plant Neurobiology, the name itself incorporating a dubious claim that plants have neurons.  … Continue reading

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