The Brain and the Meaning of Life

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Author: Paul Thagard

Publisher: Princeton University Press

ISBN: 0691154406

Category: Philosophy

Page: 296

View: 1608

Why is life worth living? What makes actions right or wrong? What is reality and how do we know it? The Brain and the Meaning of Life draws on research in philosophy, psychology, and neuroscience to answer some of the most pressing questions about life's nature and value. Paul Thagard argues that evidence requires the abandonment of many traditional ideas about the soul, free will, and immortality, and shows how brain science matters for fundamental issues about reality, morality, and the meaning of life. The ongoing Brain Revolution reveals how love, work, and play provide good reasons for living. Defending the superiority of evidence-based reasoning over religious faith and philosophical thought experiments, Thagard argues that minds are brains and that reality is what science can discover. Brains come to know reality through a combination of perception and reasoning. Just as important, our brains evaluate aspects of reality through emotions that can produce both good and bad decisions. Our cognitive and emotional abilities allow us to understand reality, decide effectively, act morally, and pursue the vital needs of love, work, and play. Wisdom consists of knowing what matters, why it matters, and how to achieve it. The Brain and the Meaning of Life shows how brain science helps to answer questions about the nature of mind and reality, while alleviating anxiety about the difficulty of life in a vast universe. The book integrates decades of multidisciplinary research, but its clear explanations and humor make it accessible to the general reader.

Meaning of Life

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Author: Bradley Trevor Greive

Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing

ISBN: 1449414079

Category: Humor

Page: 144

View: 7698

In his hilarious and uplifting style, bestselling author Grieve finally provides an answer to the meaning of life: Figure out what you love and do it. This is a witty, thought-provoking book that makes an ideal gift for anyone who's seeking their true purpose and wants to laugh along the way.

The Meaning of Life: A Very Short Introduction

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Author: Terry Eagleton

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 9780191579035

Category: Philosophy

Page: 128

View: 1246

We have all wondered about the meaning of life. But is there an answer? And do we even really know what we're asking? Terry Eagleton takes a stimulating and quirky look at this most compelling of questions: at the answers explored in philosophy and literature; at the crisis of meaning in modern times; and suggests his own solution to how we might rediscover meaning in our lives.

The Meaning of Life

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Author: S. L. Frank,Boris Jakim

Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing

ISBN: 0802865275

Category: Philosophy

Page: 160

View: 7684

Originally published in Russian in 1925, The Meaning of Life is a distillation of S.L. Frank's bitter experience during the Revolution and his post-Revolution exile. It is, quite simply, a book about the search for meaning in suffering, and it displays an extraordinary spiritual profundity rooted in personal experience. Translator Boris Jakim calls it "the closest thing we have in the twenty-first century to the book of Job." Jakim's masterful translation into English brings Frank's powerful thought to a world still ù and always ù searching for meaning. Boris Jakim is one of the foremost living translators of Russian religious thought into English.

Darwin, God and the Meaning of Life

How Evolutionary Theory Undermines Everything You Thought You Knew

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Author: Steve Stewart-Williams

Publisher: Cambridge University Press

ISBN: 1139490990

Category: Science

Page: N.A

View: 7252

If you accept evolutionary theory, can you also believe in God? Are human beings superior to other animals, or is this just a human prejudice? Does Darwin have implications for heated issues like euthanasia and animal rights? Does evolution tell us the purpose of life, or does it imply that life has no ultimate purpose? Does evolution tell us what is morally right and wrong, or does it imply that ultimately 'nothing' is right or wrong? In this fascinating and intriguing book, Steve Stewart-Williams addresses these and other fundamental philosophical questions raised by evolutionary theory and the exciting new field of evolutionary psychology. Drawing on biology, psychology and philosophy, he argues that Darwinian science supports a view of a godless universe devoid of ultimate purpose or moral structure, but that we can still live a good life and a happy life within the confines of this view.

Money and the Meaning of Life

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Author: Jacob Needleman

Publisher: Crown Business

ISBN: 9780385262422

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 321

View: 8948

If we understood the true role of money in our lives, writes philosopher Jacob Needleman, we would not think simply in terms of spending it or saving it. Money exerts a deep emotional influence on who we are and what we tell ourselves we can never have. Our long unwillingness to understand the emotional and spiritual effects of money on us is at the heart of why we have come to know the price of everything, and the value of nothing. Money has everything to do with the pursuit of an idealistic life, while at the same time, it is at the root of our daily frustrations. On a social level, money has a profound impact on the price of progress. Needleman shows how money slowly began to haunt us, from the invention of coins in Biblical times (when money was created to rescue the community good, not for self gain), through its hypnotic appeal in our money-obsessed era. This is a remarkable book that combines myth and psychology, the poetry of the Sufis and the wisdom of King Solomon, along with Jacob Needleman's searching of his own soul and his culture to explain how money can become a unique means of self-knowledge. As part of the Currency paperback line, it includes a "User's Guide" an introduction and discussion guide created for the paperback by the author -- to help readers make practical use of the book's ideas.

Movies and the Meaning of Life

Philosophers Take on Hollywood

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Author: Kimberly A. Blessing,Paul Tudico

Publisher: Open Court

ISBN: 0812698746

Category: Philosophy

Page: 300

View: 7451

"The meaning of life is the most urgent of questions," said the existentiallist thinker Albert Camus. And no less a philosopher than Woody Allen has wondered:"How is it possible to find meaning in a finite world, given my waist and shirt size?" "Movies and the Meaning of Life" looks at popular and cult movies, examining their assumptions and insights on meaning-of-life questions: What is reality and how can I know it? (The Truman Show, Contact, Waking Life); How do I find myself and my true identity? (Fight Club, Being John Malkovich, Boys Don't Cry, Memento); How do I find meaning from my interactions with others? (Pulp Fiction, Shadowlands, Chasing Amy); What is the chief purpose in life? (American Beauty, Life is Beautiful, The Shawshank Redemption); and How ought I live my life? (Pleasantville, Spiderman, Minority Report, Groundhog Day).

On Purpose

How We Create the Meaning of Life

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Author: Paul Froese

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199948909

Category: SOCIAL SCIENCE

Page: 256

View: 6925

"On Purpose is a sociological conversation about the meaning of life. The moral of the book is not that life has some ultimate meaning or no meaning at all, but rather that a purpose-driven life was always a collective project"--

What Is the Meaning of Life?

A Journey Into the Wisdom of Life

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Author: Nicolae Tanase

Publisher: Independently Published

ISBN: 9781521375471

Category: Body, Mind & Spirit

Page: 822

View: 7678

Over the course of two years (2015-2017) I asked about a thousand renowned people one question: what is the meaning of life?This book is an anthology of about 600 answers on the meaning of life.Among the contributors you will find renowned spiritual teachers, scientists, psychologists, doctors, professors, academics, musicians, artists, authors, buddhists, christians, muslims, daoists, writers, yogis, dancers, teachers, businessmen, philosophers, shamans, healers, sociologists, indigenous people, students, laymen, activists, priests, ministers, chefs, economists, children, etc., etc.This book may be read over a period of two years. Read one "Meaning of Life" a day and live the day with it. Make your day most meaningful with it.All contributions are put in chronological order. The more you read the more interesting it becomes. The more you read the more insightful YOU become. This book is a journey. A journey into meaningfulness...Enjoy and live a "meaning full" life!

The Death of God and the Meaning of Life

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Author: Julian Young

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1135020906

Category: Philosophy

Page: 246

View: 9327

What is the meaning of life? In today's secular, post-religious scientific world, this question has become a serious preoccupation. But it also has a long history: many major philosophers have thought deeply about it, as Julian Young so vividly illustrates in this thought-provoking second edition of The Death of God and the Meaning of Life. Three new chapters explore Søren Kierkegaard’s attempts to preserve a Christian answer to the question of the meaning of life, Karl Marx's attempt to translate this answer into naturalistic and atheistic terms, and Sigmund Freud’s deep pessimism about the possibility of any version of such an answer. Part 1 presents an historical overview of philosophers from Plato to Marx who have believed in a meaning of life, either in some supposed ‘other’ world or in the future of this world. Part 2 assesses what happened when the traditional structures that give life meaning began to erode. With nothing to take their place, these structures gave way to the threat of nihilism, to the appearance that life is meaningless. Young looks at the responses to this threat in chapters on Nietzsche, Heidegger, Sartre, Camus, Foucault and Derrida. Fully revised and updated throughout, this highly engaging exploration of fundamental issues will captivate anyone who’s ever asked themselves where life’s meaning (if there is one) really lies. It also makes a perfect historical introduction to philosophy, particularly to the continental tradition.

What's It All About?

Philosophy And The Meaning Of Life

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Author: Julian Baggini

Publisher: Granta Books

ISBN: 1847089208

Category: Philosophy

Page: N.A

View: 4985

This book is aimed at the reader who is serious about confronting the big issues in life but is turned off by books which deal with them through religion, spirituality or 'psycho-babble'. It is for people who want an honest, intelligent discussion which doesn't hide from the difficulties or make undeliverable promises. It aims to help the reader to understand the overlooked issues behind the obvious questions and shows how philosophy does not so much answer them as help provide us with the resources to answer them for ourselves.

Nothingness and the Meaning of Life

Philosophical Approaches to Ultimate Meaning Through Nothing and Reflexivity

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Author: Nicholas Waghorn

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

ISBN: 1472529855

Category: Philosophy

Page: 320

View: 8259

What is the meaning of life? Does anything really matter? In the past few decades these questions, perennially associated with philosophy in the popular consciousness, have rightly retaken their place as central topics in the academy. In this major contribution, Nicholas Waghorn provides a sustained and rigorous elucidation of what it would take for lives to have significance. Bracketing issues about ways our lives could have more or less meaning, the focus is rather on the idea of ultimate meaning, the issue of whether a life can attain meaning that cannot be called into question. Waghorn sheds light on this most fundamental of existential problems through a detailed yet comprehensive examination of the notion of nothing, embracing classic and cutting-edge literature from both the analytic and Continental traditions. Central figures such as Heidegger, Carnap, Wittgenstein, Nozick and Nagel are drawn upon to anchor the discussion in some of the most influential discussion of recent philosophical history. In the process of relating our ideas concerning nothing to the problem of life's meaning, Waghorn's book touches upon a number of fundamental themes, including reflexivity and its relation to our conceptual limits, whether religion has any role to play in the question of life's meaning, and the nature and constraints of philosophical methodology. A number of major philosophical traditions are addressed, including phenomenology, poststructuralism, and classical and paraconsistent logics. In addition to providing the most thorough current discussion of ultimate meaning, it will serve to introduce readers to philosophical debates concerning the notion of nothing, and the appendix engaging religion will be of value to both philosophers and theologians.

Meaning in Life

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Author: Thaddeus Metz

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191662968

Category: Philosophy

Page: 288

View: 6268

What makes a person's life meaningful? Thaddeus Metz offers a new answer to an ancient question which has recently returned to the philosophical agenda. He proceeds by examining what, if anything, all the conditions that make a life meaningful have in common. The outcome of this process is a philosophical theory of meaning in life. He starts by evaluating existing theories in terms of the classic triad of the good, the true, and the beautiful. He considers whether meaning in life might be about such principles as fulfilling God's purpose, obtaining reward in an afterlife for having been virtuous, being attracted to what merits attraction, leaving the world a better place, connecting to organic unity, or transcending oneself by connecting to what is extensive. He argues that no extant principle satisfactorily accounts for the three-fold significance of morality, enquiry, and creativity, and that the most promising theory is a fresh one according to which meaning in life is a matter of intelligence contoured toward fundamental conditions of human existence.

Every Time I Find the Meaning of Life, They Change It

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Author: Daniel Klein

Publisher: Oneworld Publications

ISBN: 1780747861

Category: Philosophy

Page: 256

View: 4905

Fifty years ago, Daniel Klein began studying philosophy at Harvard University, hoping to find an answer to that most burning of questions: what is the best way to live my life? He thought the great philosophers would be able to give him some ideas, or at least some clues. But, aside from the occasional hint, all he got were more questions, ones which philosophers thought needed answering first. They included ‘what is the meaning of meaning?’ and ‘how can we know what is true?’ Now in his seventies and looking back on his life, Klein brings us a personal commentary on the great philosophical pronouncements he’s collected over the years. Told with the same brilliantly dry sense of humor that made Travels with Epicurus so popular, Every Time I Find the Meaning of Life is an eminently readable series of thoughts on wise words.

Exploring the Meaning of Life

An Anthology and Guide

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Author: Joshua W. Seachris

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 0470658789

Category: Philosophy

Page: 491

View: 6126

Much more than just an anthology, this survey of humanity's search for the meaning of life includes the latest contributions to the debate, a judicious selection of key canonical essays, and insightful commentary by internationally respected philosophers. Cutting-edge viewpoint features the most recent contributions to the debate Extensive general introduction offers unprecedented context Leading contemporary philosophers provide insightful introductions to each section

The Meaning of Life and the Great Philosophers

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Author: Stephen Leach,James Tartaglia

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1315385929

Category: Philosophy

Page: 302

View: 6875

The Meaning of Life and the Great Philosophers reveals how great philosophers of the past sought to answer the question of the meaning of life. This edited collection includes thirty-five chapters which each focus on a major philosophical figure, from Confucius to Rorty, and that imaginatively engage with the topic from their perspective. This volume also contains a Postscript on the historical origins and original significance of the phrase ‘the meaning of life’. Written by leading experts in the field, such as A.C. Grayling, Thaddeus Metz and John Cottingham, this unique and engaging book explores the relevance of the history of philosophy to contemporary debates. It will prove essential reading for students and scholars studying the history of philosophy, philosophy of religion, ethics, metaphysics or comparative philosophy.

On the Meaning of Life

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Author: Will Durant,Owen C. Middleton

Publisher: N.A

ISBN: 9781258006662

Category:

Page: 152

View: 851

In the Fall of 1930 Will Durant found himself outside his home in Lake Hill, New York, raking leaves. He was approached by a well-dressed man who told him in a quiet tone that he was going to kill himself unless the philosopher could give him a valid reason not to. Not having the time to wax philosophic on the matter, Durant did his best to furnish the man with reasons to continue his existence. Haunted by the encounter with the despondent stranger, Durant contacted 100 luminaries in the arts, politics, religion and sciences, challenging them to respond not only to the fundamental question of life's meaning (in the abstract) but also to relate how they each (in the particular) found meaning, purpose and fulfillment in their own lives. Durant turned their answers and his own into a book entitled "On The Meaning Of Life," which was released to the general public in 1932. Unpromoted, the litte treasure found its way into few hands, and almost no copies of the book exist today. Now available for a new generation through Promethean Press, "On The Meaning Of Life" is a powerful book on a very powerful topic. In this book Will Durant has fashioned an unprecedented "dream team" of luminaries that is both profound and diverse: poets, philosophers, saints, inmates, athletes, Nobel Prize winners, college professors, psychologists, entertainers, musicians, authors and leaders. Within their varied insights, despite their uniqueness as individuals and the very different lives they led, the reader will note a consistent thread running through their viewpoints, revealing a commonality among human beings who not only seek meaning in life, but who actually achieve it.

Meanings of Life

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Author: Roy F. Baumeister

Publisher: Guilford Press

ISBN: 9780898625318

Category: Psychology

Page: 426

View: 1304

Who among us has not at some point asked, what is the meaning of life?' In this extraordinary book, an eminent social scientist looks at the big picture and explores what empirical studies from diverse fields tell us about the human condition. MEANINGS OF LIFE draws together evidence from psychology, history, anthropology, and sociology, integrating copious research findings into a clear and conclusive discussion of how people attempt to make sense of their lives. In a lively and accessible style, emphasizing facts over theories, Baumeister explores why people desire meaning in their lives, how these meanings function, what forms they take, and what happens when life loses meaning. It is the most comprehensive examination of the topic to date.

On the Meaning of Life

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Author: John Cottingham

Publisher: Presbyterian Publishing Corp

ISBN: 9780203164242

Category: Philosophy

Page: 144

View: 9712

The question 'What is the meaning of life?' is one of the most fascinating, oldest and most difficult questions human beings have ever posed themselves. In an increasingly secularized culture, it remains a question to which we are ineluctably and powerfully drawn. Drawing skillfully on a wealth of thinkers, writers and scientists from Augustine, Descartes, Freud and Camus, to Spinoza, Pascal, Darwin, and Wittgenstein, On the Meaning of Life breathes new vitality into one of the very biggest questions.