I was recently reading a book by US General McChrystal, and his experiences fighting the Al Qaeda terrorist insurgency in Iraq. In the book, he brought up something that I found particularly interesting. The world has become “flatter” and faster. People are more connected, more mobile, and move faster than ever before. These changes have … Continue reading Don’t Get Triggered by Analogies – They are a Powerful Tool for Logical Reasoning
I was recently debating a philosophical conundrum with some friends, when I realized that something that seemed morally obvious to me was actually considered abominable by others. Something that made me realize that our common understanding of morality may not be nearly as common as I had thought. Some tangential context that sets the stage. … Continue reading Would you get Blood on your Hands to Save a Life?
Picture this. You get hired on the same day as a colleague. Both of you have the same qualifications, and will be doing the same job. The main difference you can discern is that your colleague is a married man and main breadwinner for his family, whereas you are a single woman with no kids. … Continue reading Should Parents get Paid more than Singles?
For my friends everything, for my enemies the lawÓscar R. Benavides, President of Peru Not many know about this, but Hitler had a soft spot in his heart for at least one Jewish person. Eduard Bloch was an Austrian doctor practicing in Linz (Austria) and until 1907 the physician of Adolf Hitler’s family... Bloch was … Continue reading To Be Right, Live A Principled Life
Source I read today a very thought-provoking piece by Yuval Harari, a historian and philosopher. “You can vote but you can’t choose what is true.” A paraphrased summary of his thesis: Elections are awful ways of determining what is true. For that, we need to turn to experts and institutions, not popularity contests. However, elections … Continue reading We Don’t Need Elections to Figure Out What People Want
Source Stoic philosophy is often assumed to have originated entirely in Greece, through philosophers such as Zeno. However, such a characterization ignores vastly similar Eastern philosophies such as those found in Buddhism or the Bhagavad Gita - a text that was authored in a similar time period, transmitted orally for centuries prior, and is one … Continue reading The First Stoics – Philosophical Themes In The Bhagavad Gita
I recently came across an interesting article, discussing the evolution of the popular phrase “Better that 10 guilty men go free, than 1 innocent man go to prison.” More specifically, it discusses how the exact ratio has varied throughout all of human history. A perfect demonstration that as poetic as the phrase may sound, coming … Continue reading Better that 10 Innocent Men be Murdered
When Dave first heard about the basilisk from a believer, he scratched his head in confusion. “I have to give all my money to help build a super AI. And if I don't, it will one day resurrect me from the dead and torture me?” It sounded too comical to believe. And if he had … Continue reading Dave’s Basilisk
One of the most interesting paradoxes studied by Philosophers, is also one that challenges our entire approach to science and knowledge gathering. Despite its monumental importance, there currently exist no satisfying resolution to this paradox. Which is unfortunate, because by studying this paradox, and learning how to resolve it, we all stand to benefit immensely, … Continue reading Solving the Raven-Paradox and Improving the Way we do Science
As a lifelong agnostic, I never thought that I would find myself arguing for the existence of “souls”, much less claiming that I’ve found proof through Philosophical reasoning. And yet, as I consider the alternative, I find myself unable to accept any other conclusion. If we were to assume that human consciousness arises purely out … Continue reading Philosophical Proof for the Human Soul
There was a time when Philosophy was one of the most respected intellectual disciplines in humanity. Philosophical greats such as Aristotle, Plato and Kant are world renowned today, even centuries after their death. Others like Pythagoras and Newton considered themselves to be natural philosophers, and their contributions to mathematics have made them scientific idols even today. … Continue reading Why Philosophy gets no Respect in Society
Philosophy. Morality. Utilitarianism. Deontology. These can be pretty heavy stuff, and so abstract that they don't even seem real. Maybe it would help if we tried viewing these concepts in a completely different setting... such as computer programming. Act Utilitarianism: How you write code does not matter at all. The only thing that matters is … Continue reading Philosophy in Programming
The past week has produced a number of interesting articles which have become instant talking points. There was one about the continuing lack of opportunities & hurdles facing women in the sciences. There was another about how rich people subconsciously empathize less towards people who aren’t as powerful as them. As can be expected, both … Continue reading The Deafening Silence Around Animal Cruelty