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- September 27
- Irreverent/irrelevant old git
'Some of you humans are just so funny!', Male, from UK
- September 27
- Irreverent/irrelevant old git
- None - agnostic with strong atheist tendencies.
Some useful reading (for me at least), and in no particular order of merit (but with some recommendations) - many read a long time ago by the way:
- DIR Forum Access:
- Abrahamic Religion DIR
- Dharmic Religions DIR
- Non-Theistic/Non-Religious Beliefs DIR
Life 3.0 (2017) by Max Tegmark - an exploration into how AI might develop and the likely problems associated with such
Factfulness (2018) by Hans Rosling - why one should get the facts to inform one's opinion, which is often just not the case (must read)
Future Shock (1970) by Alvin Toffler - arguing effects of rapid change and the possible societal consequences of such
Maladies & Medicine: Exploring Health & Healing, 1540-1740 (2017) by Jennifer Evans & Sara Read - an exploration of health and healing in England during this period
10 Billion (2013) by Stephen Emmott - pessimistic appraisal of population growth and what the implications are (must read)
The Future is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia (2017) by Masha Gessen - insights into the Russian way of life and death, how Russia became even more authoritarian under Putin and his regime, and how the invasion of the Ukraine should have been predicted.
Religions and such:
The End of Faith (2005) by Sam Harris - exploring the negative effects of religious beliefs
Breaking the Spell (2007) by Daniel Dennett - an explanation as to why religion might be seen as a purely natural phenomena
The God Argument (2013) by A C Grayling - the case for Humanism as opposed to what religions offer
The God Delusion (2006) by Richard Dawkins - one atheist's view as to why religious beliefs are delusions
Human behaviour and history:
Behave (2017) by Robert Sapolsky - attempting to explain why we behave as we do, involving so many aspects of being human (must read)
Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind (2015) by Yuval Noah Harari - from insignificant and more primitive ape to being the one exceptionally advanced ape (must read)
Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow (2016) by Yuval Noah Harari - following on from the previous book, where we might be headed (must read)
A Million Years in a Day (2015) by Greg Jenner - the origins of so many things we take for granted
A Brief History of Everyone Who Ever Lived (2017) by Adam Rutherford - what our genes, and the history of such, reveal about us (must read)
The Bonobo and the Atheist (2014) by Frans de Waal - exploring any biological basis for morality (must read)
Guns, Germs, and Steel (1997) by Jared Diamond - proposing how geographical and environmental factors have shaped the modern world (must read)
The Blind Watchmaker (1986) by Richard Dawkins - an argument for why the Theory of Evolution is a better one than any design being involved
The Selfish Gene (1976) by Richard Dawkins - the unique role of genes in human life
Sociobiology: The New Synthesis (1975) by E O Wilson - attempts to explain much of human behaviour from our biological past (must read)
The Moral Animal: Why We Are The Way We Are (1994) by Robert Wright - an approach to such via evolutionary psychology. Much to learn about Darwin here too (as a person and his struggles), since his work is used as context to explain and discuss much human behaviour. (must read)
The Dawn of Everything: A New History of Humanity (2021) by David Graeber and David Wengrow - New perspectives as to such from an anthropologist and an archaeologist, and seemingly throwing out many of the old ones - particularly has a go at Fukuyama, Diamond, and Pinker as to their versions of history. Gave up about half-way because it became too boring, and as to having to remember all the tedious detail.
Logically Fallacious (2015) by Bo Bennett - as stated, crash course in logical fallacies
The Art of Failure (2010) by Dr Neel Burton - designated as the anti self-help guide and what actually is seen as success
Shrinks: The Untold Story of Psychiatry (2015) by Jeffrey A Lieberman, MD - an account of the painful history of psychiatry and associated treatments
Against Empathy (2016) by Paul Bloom - how empathy is too often local and/or based upon what appeals, and why this might not be so beneficial overall
The Remembered Present (1990) by Gerald Edelman - developing a theory concerning consciousness
Bright Air, Brilliant Fire: On the Matter of the Mind (1992) by Gerald Edelman - theory that the mind has arisen through evolutionary morphology
Consciousness Explained (1991) by Daniel Dennett - argues how consciousness arises from interaction of physical and cognitive processes
Women, Fire, and Dangerous Things: What Categories Reveal About the Mind (1987) by George Lakoff - argues for a model of cognition on the basis of semantics
The Origins of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind (1982) by Julian Jaynes - argues for a bicameral mind being in existence until recent times (must read, even if not true)
The Myth of Irrationality (1993) by John McCrone - some thoughts as per title concerning the workings of the human mind
The Society of Mind (1986) by Marvin Minsky - a theory concerning how the mind is constructed through simpler processes
How the Mind Works (1997) by Steven Pinker - how the mind works from an evolutionary psychology perspective
The Language Instinct (1994) by Steven Pinker - argues that humans are born with an innate capacity for language
The Blank Slate (2002) by Steven Pinker - arguing for human behaviour being shaped by evolutionary psychological adaptations rather than any 'blank slate'
The Origins of Virtue (1996) by Matt Ridley - explores the issues surrounding the development of human morality
The Red Queen (1993) by Matt Ridley - explores the evolutionary psychology perspective of sexual selection
Survival of the Prettiest: The Science of Beauty (1999) by Nancy Etcoff - a psychologist argues that our concept of beauty is in our biology rather than being a construct
The Beauty Myth (1990) by Naomi Wolf - a feminist proposes that societal pressures have much to do with our concept of beauty
From Bacteria to Bach And Back: The Evolution of Minds (2017) by Daniel Dennett - a possible explanation for the evolution of consciousness
Books not read yet or only partially read:
The Christian Delusion: Why Faith Fails (2010) Ed by John W. Loftus - a collection of essays by various authors, as per title
Religion Explained: The Evolutionary Origins of Religious Thought (2001) by Pascal Boyer - approaches the subject via evolutionary biology and cognitive psychology
The Authoritarian Dynamic (2005) by Karen Stenner - an exploration into why we tend to align ourselves with certain political perspectives and as to why we might display certain attitudes, like intolerance for example
The World Until Yesterday: What Can We Learn From Traditional Societies? (2012) by Jared Diamond - Advancing the view that there is still much to learn from earlier societies that might have been ignored in the rush for progress
SignatureOne (apex) rule to rule them all, one rule to guide them, one rule to ring the world, and in their darkness, bind them - that rule being? - DO NO HARM
Doors BJH Dylan Dead Can Dance KCrimson Strawbs Blowzabella VdGG Bonzo Dog Nice.