How to activate your brain's superpowers.
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Psychology meets philosophy: knowledge, reality, morality, meaning
Paul Thagard Ph.D.
Recent advances in artificial intelligence are impressive, including deep learning, IBM's Watson, and driverless cars. A video
describes how human intelligence is still better.
Emotions cause other emotions—such as when people’s fears make them angry at those deemed responsible for making them afraid.
Trust and mistrust are emotional processes that operate in the brain through bindings of representations of persons, situations, appraisals, and physiology.
Explanatory coherence analyzes the logic of the question of whether Kavanagh assaulted Blasey Ford, and emotional coherence explains why people deviate from such logic.
Weather disasters associated with the development of Hothouse Earth require education that affects both cognition and emotion.
The correspondence theory of truth beats alternatives because it explains scientific agreement, the obstinacy of experiments against social influence, and technological successes.
Self-esteem does not qualify as a basic human need because it has only a weak connection with accomplishments and relationships, and because its value is culture-bound.
Philosophy that builds on science can help people to see that life can remain meaningful and morally valuable, even in the face of grief.
The mental processes of dehumanization include categorization, imagery, metaphor, and transfer of emotions such as disgust, fear, and hatred.
Features such as personality, character, and intelligence result from interactions of genes, epigenetics, learning, and choice.
Moods are brain states that result from the same mechanisms that produce emotions: brain representations of physiological changes and appraisals of goal satisfaction.
Inequality is immoral when it keeps people from satisfying their biological needs such as food, and their psychological needs such as autonomy, relatedness, and competence.
What makes you the same or different over the span your life depends on the interactions of molecular, neural, mental, and social mechanisms.
Peterson's emphasis on religious myth provides a poor blueprint for understanding the origins of totalitarianism, and an even poorer guide to overcoming its evils.
Some people are taking Jordan Peterson to be profound about the nature of morality, reality, and life. How well do his views stand up to philosophical scrutiny?
Understanding of how lithium works in a mental-health context has been slow to develop.
To be emotional like human beings, robots would have to approximate our cognitive appraisals, physiological perceptions, and linguistic and cultural contexts. How could they?
The legitimacy of the argument that non-human animals have emotions is debated by an advocate and a skeptic.
Psychology needs theories to provide practical interventions and answers to fascinating questions about the mind. Causal mechanisms serve these needs better than associations.
People’s brains are equipped for caring and empathy, so why do people often hurt each other? Evil is like disease, resulting from malfunctions in mechanisms.
Deciding whether something causes a spike in disease or a pattern like global warming requires careful inferences.
When love affairs and jobs go wrong, people are sometimes told that it just wasn’t meant to be. Does such meaning come from God, the universe, fate, destiny, karma, or anything?
Psychotherapists need complex reasoning to determine how to help the people they treat. Such assessment is not simply matching features, but requires building a causal account.
Empathy in literature and film works by three modes of empathy: verbal analogies, physiological mimicry, and non-verbal simulation of chains of emotional experiences.
Most people have daily routines and rituals. According to a recent book, mornings are important productive times for many famous writers and other creative people.
A new book argues that empathy is not only overrated but actually harmful to morality. But it is often helpful in guiding ethical judgment and motivating appropriate actions.
Experimental philosophy is an important movement in which philosophers systematically collect data about how people think. It has 2 main strengths and 3 surmountable limitations.
Conflicts of interest easily arise in government, science, and medicine. Cognition-emotion interactions in the brain lead people to violate their professional responsibilities.
Scientific and philosophical progress on understanding conscious experience is blocked by questions like “what is it like to be conscious?"
Voting decisions are based more on emotional coherence with values than on rational choice. Value maps of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton supporters display their appeal.
Paul Thagard, Ph.D., is a Canadian philosopher and cognitive scientist. His 3-book Treatise on Mind and Society will be published by Oxford University Press in early 2019.
Psychology meets philosophy: knowledge, reality, morality, meaning.