Episode 267: The Thickness of Reality
Very Bad WizardsAugust 22, 202301:12:5283.61 MB

Episode 267: The Thickness of Reality

David and Tamler return to the work of old favorite William James and argue about the 6th lecture (inspired by the French philosopher Henri Bergson) of his 1909 book “A Pluralistic Universe.” James attacks the philosophical habit of elevating unchanging concepts over the continuous ever-changing flux that characterizes raw experience. Concepts, James argues, carves joints where there are none. But why does James trust pure perception (unmediated by concepts) as a true window into reality? Does he want us to return to the blooming buzzing confusion of our infancy? Is his mystical side superseding his pragmatism?

Plus, a new study on generosity after receiving a $10,000 windfall leads to a discussion of what we can interpret from null results, and lots more.

Dwyer, R. J., Brady, W. J., Anderson, C., & Dunn, E. W. (2023). Are People Generous When the Financial Stakes Are High?. Psychological Science, 09567976231184887.

A Pluralistic Universe by William James (Lecture VI)


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