Martin Demant Frederiksen – Why Do We Exist? | Legalise Freedom

Found 59 posts tagged 'evolution'

Martin Demant Frederiksen – Why Do We Exist?

September 22, 2018

MDF 1

Martin Demant Frederiksen discusses nothing.

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Why is there something rather than nothing? Wouldn’t nothing have been much simpler than something? But can nothing actually exist? Has there, in fact, always been something? Although answers to the vast, unfathomable mysteries of existence seem as distant as ever, we remain as compelled to seek them as countless generations before us. Indeed, as a species, we seem unable to truly thrive without some overarching purpose.

However, in a challenge to this eternal existential quest, Frederiksen pauses to ask ‘What goes missing when we look for meaning?’ In seeking some ultimate purpose to life, the Universe, and everything, do we devalue or even deny the present moment, the instant immediacy of where we are right now? Furthermore, given the strife and conflict caused by competing world-views – religious, secular, spiritual, scientific, and more – is there something to be said for an acceptance of futility, an embrace of meaninglessness, or even the active negation of any and all notions of cosmic teleology? After all, denial of meaning needn’t necessarily mean nihilism.

Like so many civilizations of the past, we live in a time of crisis. Contemporary culture is caught in a corpse-strewn cul de sac, a war zone of competing cosmologies, ideologies, and dogma. There are two ways out of this destructive dead end – turn back or break through – but no guarantee of either. One thing however is certain; what we affirm or deny in thought or in deed – individually and collectively – has an affect. Even if we choose not to decide, we still have made a choice.

Martin’s latest book is An Anthropology of Nothing in Particular.

Bumper music: Cliff Martinez ‘Traffic OST’
Stanislav Shevchenko ‘Conscientia’

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Mark Corske – Engines of Domination: Political Power and the Human Emergency

September 8, 2018

Mark Corske 2018

Mark Corske discusses his film ‘Engines of Domination – Political Power and the Human Emergency’. Is political power – armed central authority with states and war – really necessary for human society? Or is it a tool that ruling elites use to live at the expense of everyone else? Engines of Domination offers a theory of political power as a tool; an engine that converts human energy into power and privilege for the rulers. Invented in the Bronze Age and ruthlessly refined for six thousand years, today this engine threatens to destroy our world in a human emergency of converging political and economic crises, resource depletion, and environmental destruction.

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Antonin Tuynman – Machine / Mind / Mankind – The Future of Consciousness

May 25, 2018

Antonin Tuynman

Antonin Tuynman discusses his book ‘Is Intelligence an Algorithm?’, a wide-ranging exploration of the similarities and differences between human and artificial intelligence, and the potential for future advancement of both. Although human and machine intelligence share certain similarities, there are profound differences which pose significant problems for the development of an artificial intelligence which can truly match or even exceed the capabilities of the human brain. Artificial intelligence seeks to emulate the strengths of human intelligence whilst eliminating its weaknesses. However, both human flaws and human genius stem from the same source and it seems that we cannot have one without the other. Among other things, this places the prospects for transhumanist hopes of merging man and machine in serious doubt.

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Gary Lachman – Beyond The Robot: The Life and Work of Colin Wilson – Part Three

January 30, 2018

Gary Lachman Wilson part 3

In part three, we consider how Wilson’s worldview differed from that of many in the literary movement he was all-too-often lumped in with, the so-called ‘angry young men’ such as John Osborne and Kingsley Amis who rose to prominence during the 1950s. Wilson held an unfashionable belief in the power of self-improvement over and above that of social protest or utopian politics. Indeed, his ideas about the possible emergence of a New Human, physically and mentally improved, coupled with his criticism of what he saw as the widespread denial of genius and worm’s-eye view of the World, were in certain circles condemned as nothing less than fascist.

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Thomas Lombardo – Future Consciousness: The Path to Purposeful Evolution

January 6, 2018

Thomas Lombardo

Thomas Lombardo discusses his book ‘Future Consciousness – The Path to Purposeful Evolution’. We stand at what many consider to be a pivotal juncture in human history. Just as technological advancements race ahead with digitization and automation changing the face of society at breathtaking speed, so too we face unprecedented economic, political, social, and environmental crises. In response, many of us attempt to ignore these pressing problems by simply shutting down, lost in the past or the future, the good old days or daydreams of better times to come. Meanwhile, practitioners in the burgeoning field of pop psychology urge us to live in the present moment, the only thing that apparently exists. Both mindsets, however, may prove to be psychological dead-ends.

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Ervin Laszlo – The Intelligence of the Cosmos: Why Are We Here?

December 14, 2017

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Ervin Laszlo discusses his book ‘The Intelligence of the Cosmos: Why Are We Here? New Answers from the Frontiers of Science’. For the outdated mainstream paradigm, the universe is a giant mechanism functioning in accordance with known and knowable laws, patterns, and regularities. But the new paradigm emerging in science offers a different concept – a universe as an interconnected, coherent whole, informed by a cosmic intelligence. This is not a finite, mechanistic, purely material model – it is a holistic system infused with consciousness, and within it, we are conscious beings who emerge and co-evolve as complex vibrations in what Laszlo calls the Akashic Field of the universe.

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Ivelin Sardamov – Amused to Death: The False Promise of the Information Age

December 12, 2017

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Ivelin Sardamov discusses his book ‘Mental Penguins – The Neverending Education Crisis and the False Promise of the Information Age’. Sardamov draws on key findings in neuroscience to explain decreasing attention spans, a crisis of curiosity, and waning interest in and knowledge of complex social issues in the United States and around the world. Attributing this trend primarily to the effects of information overload, ubiquitous screens, and constant access to the Internet, he argues that chronic over-stimulation generated by the current socio-technological environment fosters addictive tendencies in today’s young people, many of whom will graduate from profit-driven universities both mired in debt and unprepared for life in the outside world.

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Gary Lachman – Beyond The Robot: The Life and Work of Colin Wilson – Part Two

November 20, 2017

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Gary Lachman discusses his book ‘Beyond the Robot – The Life and Work of Colin Wilson’. Colin Wilson was a literary and cultural rebel, and one of the most adventurous, hopeful, and least understood visionary intellects of the past century. Author of over a hundred books including the 1956 classic ‘The Outsider’, Wilson purveyed a philosophy of mind power and human potential that made him arguably the only optimistic existentialist.

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Joanna Demers – The Sound of the Apocalypse

November 2, 2017

Joanna Demers

Joanna Demers discusses her books ‘Drone and Apocalypse’ and ‘Anatomy of Thought Fiction’. The idea of apocalypse is truly ancient. Although the word essentially translates as a revelation of knowledge, today the term is commonly used in reference to end-time scenarios or to the end of the world in general. Almost every culture and civilization has or has had its own apocalyptic tradition, often believing the end-time already begun and the end itself imminent. Whether self-inflicted or supernatural, cosmic or divine, apocalyptic thinking infuses all corners of culture. From the mysteries and meanings of religion and art, to our beliefs about the past, present and future, and the values which guide how we see ourselves, others, and the world at large, the dread of impending doom never seems far away.

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Amit Goswami – Quantum Physics and the Meaning of Life

August 16, 2017

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Amit Goswami discusses ‘The Everything Answer Book: How Quantum Physics Explains Love, Death and the Meaning of Life’. Goswami s basic premise is that quantum physics is not only the future of science, but also the key to understanding consciousness, life, death, God, and the meaning of life. Quantum physics offers an antidote to the moral sterility of scientific reductionism and mechanistic materialism, and holds the key to the clearest, most coherent understanding of our universe. In short, quantum physics is indeed the theory of everything. In The Everything Answer Book Goswami and his colleagues discuss, among other things, how quantum physics affects our understanding of thoughts, feelings and intuitions, karma, death and reincarnation, dreams, evolution and the purpose of existence. Crucially, it points the way towards the spiritualization of politics, economics, business, education, and wider society itself, all of which are vital steps if our species is to survive and thrive through the challenging times ahead.

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