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Join neuroscientist, philosopher, and five-time New York Times best-selling author Sam Harris as he explores important and controversial questions about the mind, society, current events, moral philosophy, religion, and rationality—with an overarching focus on how a growing understanding of ourselves and the world is changing our sense of how we should live. Sam is also the creator of the Waking Up app. Combining Sam’s decades of mindfulness practice, profound wisdom from varied philosophica ...
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Join neuroscientist, philosopher, and five-time New York Times best-selling author Sam Harris as he explores important and controversial questions about the mind, society, current events, moral philosophy, religion, and rationality—with an overarching focus on how a growing understanding of ourselves and the world is changing our sense of how we should live. Sam is also the creator of the Waking Up app. Combining Sam’s decades of mindfulness practice, profound wisdom from varied philosophica ...
  continue reading
 
5 minute summaries of Making Sense with Sam Harris's podcast episodes. Get the best insights and ideas in much less time, more at owltail.com Written summaries: https://www.owltail.com/summaries/26758-waking-up-with-sam-harris Other podcast summaries in Apple Podcasts: http://bit.ly/5-min-summaries Other podcast summaries In other apps, search 'podcast summaries'. Join neuroscientist, philosopher, and best-selling author Sam Harris as he explores important and controversial questions about t ...
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show series
 
Sam Harris speaks to Bill Maher about the state of the world. They discuss the aftermath of October 7th, the cowardice and confusion of many celebrities, gender apartheid, the failures of the Biden campaign, Bill’s relationship to his audience, the differences between the left and right, Megyn Kelly, loss of confidence in the media, expectations fo…
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In today’s housekeeping, Sam explains his digital business model. He and Yasmine Mohammed (co-host) then speak with Masih Alinejad about gender apartheid in Iran. They discuss the Iranian revolution, the hypocrisy of Western feminists, the morality police and the significance of the hijab, the My Stealthy Freedom campaign, kidnapping and assassinat…
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Sam Harris speaks with Sebastian Junger about danger and death. They discuss Sebastian's career as a journalist in war zones, the connection between danger and meaning, his experience of nearly dying from a burst aneurysm in his abdomen, his lingering trauma, the concept of "awe," psychedelics, near-death experiences, atheism, psychic phenomena, co…
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Sam Harris speaks with Greg Lukianoff about free speech and cancel culture. They discuss the origins of political correctness, free speech and its boundaries, the bedrock principle of the First Amendment, technology and the marketplace of ideas, epistemic anarchy, social media and cancellation, comparisons to McCarthyism, self-censorship by profess…
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Sam Harris discusses the recent protests on college campuses, why focusing narrowly on the problem of "antisemitism" will be counterproductive, widespread confusion about the threat of Islamic extremism, and the necessary defense of Western values. A transcript of this podcast is available on Sam’s blog. If the Making Sense podcast logo in your pla…
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Sam Harris speaks with John Spencer about the reality of urban warfare and Israel's conduct in the war in Gaza. They discuss the nature of the Hamas attacks on October 7th, what was most surprising about the Hamas videos, the difficulty in distinguishing Hamas from the rest of the population, combatants as a reflection of a society's values, how ma…
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Sam Harris begins by remembering his friendship with Dan Dennett. He then speaks with David Wallace-Wells about the shattering of our information landscape. They discuss the false picture of reality produced during Covid, the success of the vaccines, how various countries fared during the pandemic, our preparation for a future pandemic, how we norm…
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Sam Harris revisits the central argument he made in his book, The Moral Landscape, about the reality of moral truth. He discusses the way concepts like “good” and “evil” can be thought about objectively, the primacy of our intuitions of truth and falsity, and the unity of knowledge. If the Making Sense podcast logo in your player is BLACK, you can …
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Sam Harris speaks with Cal Newport about our use of information technology and the cult of productivity. They discuss the state of social media, the "academic-in-exile effect," free speech and moderation, the effect of the pandemic on knowledge work, slow productivity, the example of Jane Austen, managing up in an organization, defragmenting one's …
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Sam Harris and Josh Szeps (episode co-host) speak with Douglas Murray about the ongoing war in Gaza. They discuss public opinion about the war, the prospect of a widening conflict with Hezbollah and Iran, whether the Iron Dome was a mistake, the sentiments of Israeli Arabs, the global problem of Islamism, the risk of a resurgent right-wing in Europ…
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Sam Harris speaks with William MacAskill about the implosion of FTX and the effect that it has had on the Effective Altruism movement. They discuss the logic of “earning to give,” the mind of SBF, his philanthropy, the character of the EA community, potential problems with focusing on long-term outcomes, AI risk, the effects of the FTX collapse on …
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Sam Harris speaks with Robert Sapolsky about the widespread belief in free will. They discuss the limits of intuition, the views of Dan Dennett, complexity and emergence, downward causation, abstraction, epigenetics, predictability, fatalism, Benjamin Libet, the primacy of luck, historical change in attitudes about free will, implications for ethic…
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Sam Harris speaks with Cass Sunstein about habituation and its consequences. They discuss habituation to positive and negative experiences, marriage, happiness, meaning, variety, doing good vs feeling good, midlife crises, kids, wealth and happiness, things vs experience, the “illusory truth effect,” misinformation and social media, echo chambers a…
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Sam Harris speaks with Yaroslav Trofimov about the War in Ukraine. They discuss the widespread false assumptions that Russia would win a swift victory, Ukrainian attitudes toward Russia, the transformation of the Ukrainian military, Russian incompetence, Russian public opinion, the Azov Battalion and the “de-Nazification” of Ukraine, the role of th…
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Sam Harris speaks with Bret Stephens about America’s place in the world. They discuss the waning Pax Americana, American isolationism, Republican fondness for Putin, Tucker Carlson, why America should support Ukraine, the significance of Alexei Navalny, what it would mean to properly hold Putin responsible for his death, nuclear blackmail, valid cr…
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Sam Harris and Rory Stewart debate whether Islam poses a unique threat to open societies. If the Making Sense podcast logo in your player is BLACK, you can SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all full-length episodes at samharris.org/subscribe. Learning how to train your mind is the single greatest investment you can make in life. That’s why Sam Harris cre…
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Sam Harris speaks with Peter Zeihan about the unraveling world order. They discuss the Bretton Woods system, America’s role in securing the global supply chain, the coming end of American security guarantees, the shrinking of the US Navy, Houthi terrorism, deterring Iran, conflict in the Middle East, the future of Israel, the limits of immigration,…
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Sam Harris speaks with John Gray about the possibility of moral and political progress. They discuss historical and current threats to freedom of thought, the limits of law, the spread of dangerous technology, failures of convergence on norms and values, Arthur Koestler, de-industrialization in Europe, fellow travelers and the progressive embrace o…
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Sam Harris speaks with Coleman Hughes about race, racism, and social justice. They discuss the ideal of "color blindness," race and crime, Coleman's experience at TED, LatinX, the confusion of the elites, Ibram X. Kendi, affirmative action, class differences, poverty, single-parent families, the death of George Floyd and the trial of Derek Chauvin,…
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Sam Harris speaks with Rory Stewart about the fraying world order. They discuss the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the problems with nation building, cultural ignorance, tolerance for corruption, our catastrophic withdrawal from Afghanistan, the role that Islam played in our failures in Afghanistan and Iraq, conspiracy theories, the influence of soc…
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Sam Harris speaks with Jonathan Rauch and Josh Szeps about the foundations of knowledge and the fragmentation of society. They discuss the state of the mainstream media, diversity of viewpoints, the "reality-based" community, what Covid did to our information landscape, the Overton window and the news value of controversial stories, the unique chal…
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Sam Harris speaks with Chris Anderson about generosity in the age of the Internet. They talk about the new spirit of cynicism in tech and finance, the problems with DEI, the Coleman Hughes controversy at TED, the norm of color blindness, the science of generosity, the leverage of the Internet, the false opposition between selfishness and selflessne…
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Sam Harris speaks with Rabbi David Wolpe about the global response to the atrocities of October 7th, 2023. They discuss the difference between Israeli and diaspora Jews, the history and logic of antisemitism, the role of conspiracy theories, Great Replacement Theory, reasons for Jewish success, right-wing antisemitism, left-wing antisemitism, the r…
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If the Making Sense podcast logo in your player is BLACK, you can SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all full-length episodes at samharris.org/subscribe. Learning how to train your mind is the single greatest investment you can make in life. That’s why Sam created the Waking Up app. From rational mindfulness practice to lessons on some of life’s most impo…
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Sam Harris speaks with Brian Muraresku about ancient mystery religions and the possible psychedelic roots of Christianity. They discuss the Mysteries of Eleusis, the “pagan continuity hypothesis,” the cult of Dionysius, the Dead Sea scrolls and the Gnostic Gospels, Christianity as a cult of human sacrifice, the evidence for the use of psychedelics …
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Sam Harris speaks with Amanda Knox about her experience of having been falsely convicted and imprisoned for murder in Italy. If the Making Sense podcast logo in your player is BLACK, you can SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all full-length episodes at samharris.org/subscribe. Learning how to train your mind is the single greatest investment you can make…
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Sam Harris comments on the recent testimony of university presidents before Congress, along with Elon Musk's reinstating of Alex Jones on X. He then introduces a recent episode of the Call Me Back podcast about the war in Gaza, hosted by Dan Senor. Sam really enjoyed listening to this conversation and we’re delighted to be able to share it with the…
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Sam Harris speaks with Peter Singer about important problems in ethics. They discuss his career as a philosopher, the moral status of non-human animals, the ethics of moral hierarchies, speciesism, the scale of animal suffering, conscientious omnivores, animal experimentation, the tragic case of Sam Bankman-Fried, concerns about Effective Altruism,…
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Sam Harris speaks with Yasmine Mohammed about her book Unveiled: How Western Liberals Empower Radical Islam. They discuss her family background and indoctrination into conservative Islam, the double standard that Western liberals use when thinking about women in the Muslim community, the state of feminism in general, honor violence, the validity of…
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Sam Harris speaks with Nick Bostrom about the problem of existential risk. They discuss public goods, moral illusions, the asymmetry between happiness and suffering, utilitarianism, “the vulnerable world hypothesis,” the history of nuclear deterrence, the possible need for “turnkey totalitarianism,” whether we’re living in a computer simulation, th…
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Sam Harris speaks with Yuval Noah Harari about the events of October 7th and the resulting war in Gaza. They discuss the unraveling of global order, the failure of the IDF, the incompetence of the Netanyahu government, the goals of Hamas, the Saudi peace treaty, the right of Israel to exist, the status of Palestinian and Jewish refugees, victim and…
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Sam Harris speaks with Frank Ostaseski about death and dying—and about how the awareness of death can improve our lives in each moment. Frank Ostaseski is a Buddhist teacher, international lecturer, and a leading voice in end-of-life care. In 1987, he co-founded the Zen Hospice Project, the first Buddhist hospice in America. In 2004, he created the…
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Sam Harris speaks with Robert Sapolsky about the brain and human behavior. They discuss the relationship between reason and emotion, the role of the frontal cortex, the illusion of free will, punishment and retributive justice, neurological disorders and abnormal behavior, the relationship between science and religion, and other topics. Robert Sapo…
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Sam Harris speaks to Bart Ehrman about his experience of being a born-again Christian, his academic training in New Testament scholarship, his loss of faith, the most convincing argument in defense of Christianity, the status of miracles, the composition of the New Testament, the resurrection of Jesus, the nature of heaven and hell, the book of Rev…
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Sam Harris speaks with David Deutsch about his book, The Beginning of Infinity. They discuss the boundary between science and philosophy, the nature of scientific authority, the utility of knowledge, artificial intelligence, moral relativism, the Fermi problem, and other topics. David Deutsch is best known as the founding father of the quantum theo…
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Sam Harris speaks with Yuval Noah Harari about meditation, the need for stories, the power of technology to erase the boundary between fact and fiction, wealth inequality, the problem of finding meaning in a world without work, religion as a virtual reality game, the difference between pain and suffering, and other topics. Yuval Noah Harari has a P…
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Sam Harris speaks with Jeannie Fontana and Robin Carhart-Harris about the TREAT Initiative in California and the growing promise of psychedelics for mental health care. If the Making Sense podcast logo in your player is BLACK, you can SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all full-length episodes at samharris.org/subscribe. Learning how to train your mind is…
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Sam Harris speaks with psychologist Paul Bloom about the limitations of empathy as a guide to moral reasoning, why empathy is a bad metric for measuring one’s character, cognitive biases, and other topics. Paul Bloom is Professor of Psychology at the University of Toronto, and Brooks and Suzanne Ragen Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Yale Univer…
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Sam Harris speaks with Yascha Mounk about identity politics. They discuss Yascha’s concept of the “identity synthesis,” skepticism about “cancel culture,” racial segregation in schools, the ideological change on college campuses, Michel Foucault and postmodernism, the rejection of universalism, Derrick Bell, Kimberlé Crenshaw, the “permanence of ra…
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Sam Harris speaks with philosopher David Chalmers about the nature of consciousness, the challenges of understanding it scientifically, and the prospect that we will one day build it into our machines. David Chalmers is Professor of Philosophy and co-director of the Center for Mind, Brain, and Consciousness at New York University, and also holds a …
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Sam Harris speaks with David Brooks about the state of American democracy and the liberal world order. They discuss the weakness of moral individualism, the loss of social trust, the dangers of identity politics, what happened to the Republican Party, the hatred of elites, the 2024 Presidential Election, the Trump indictments, the war in Ukraine, m…
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Sam Harris speaks with Chris Field about climate change and its consequences. They discuss skepticism about climate change, the accuracy of climate models, the magnitude of temperature increases, how global temperatures are measured, the historical record of climate variation, the range of possibilities in the coming decades, feedback mechanisms, w…
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Sam Harris speaks with Mustafa Suleyman about his new book, “The Coming Wave: Technology, Power, and the 21st Century’s Greatest Dilemma.” They discuss the progress in artificial intelligence made at his company DeepMind, the acquisition of DeepMind by Google, Atari DQN, AlphaGo, AlphaZero, AlphaFold, the invention of new knowledge, the risks of ou…
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