Category Archives: woo

Panpsychism: an interview and a critique

Yes, we’re gonna have more on panpsychism today, and, after I read Goff’s book (coming via interlibrary loan) I think I’m pretty much done. I’ve now finished Annaka Harris’s book book Conscious: A Brief Guide to the Fundamental Mystery of the Mind, and, as I said yesterday, it’s a good read but suffers from her […]

A good critique of panpsychism but a lousy alternative

The article at hand was published by the Institute of Art and Ideas, a British organization that I hadn’t heard of but is described by Wikipedia thusly: The Institute of Art and Ideas is an arts organisation founded in 2008 in London. Its programming includes the world’s largest philosophy and music festival, HowTheLightGetsIn and the online channel IAI TV, where […]

Gwyneth Paltrow’s latest woo for sale: “Inner Compass” cards and a $75 candle that smells like ladyparts

Today is Saturday, which is supposed to be my day off, and therefore there will be little or no braining. Instead, let’s see what Gwynnie is up to. (Does anybody like her? Some people must, as she’s gotten rich off her products and surely has a lot of fans). I’m not one of those fans, as […]

Another panpsychist flogs a dead theory

Sorry, I’m not yet done with panpsychism. The more I read about this theory, the more I’m puzzled that seemingly rational people accept such a grossly benighted view of consciousness. Seriously! Especially atheists, for panpsychism resembles theology in several ways: There is not a shred of evidence supporting its tenets. It was invented to plug […]

A BBC show on panpsychism once again shows that there’s no “there” there

UPDATE: In the first comment on my thread below, reader Coel calls our attention to a year-old critique of panpsychism by physicist Sabine Hossenfelder, “Electrons don’t think.” It makes some physics-related criticisms of panpsychism that I could not have made, but also adds a nice comment, a response to the claim (made by Goff among […]

Sean Carroll vs. Philip Goff on panpsychism

Since we’ve been talking about panpsychism lately—that’s the theory that the entire Universe and its constituents are in some way conscious—I thought I’d post a podcast in which two opposing academics hash out the issues. I’ll be posting a bit more about panpsychism in the weeks to come as I read and learn more about […]

The craziest Templeton grant yet: Evolution and “self-giving love”

Templeton continues to waste perfectly good money on theology, which is the study of the invisible and its self-justification by simply making up stuff that can’t be tested. A paradigmatic example of the genre is this award of $133,130 for studies of theodicy by Mats Wahlberg, a professor of “systematic theology” at Umea University in […]

Panpsychism makes a sneaky return

Panpsychism is the theory—or rather, a hypothesis, since there’s not a shred of evidence supporting it—that every bit of matter in the Universe is conscious in some way.  Given the lack of evidence, though, that atoms, rocks, and buckets of water are conscious, we must ask why this crazy hypothesis was proposed, and why it’s […]

Once more, National Geographic goes for the woo

We’ve all observed National Geographic magazine going down the tubes and going soft on religion (e.g., investigating and affirming the historicity of scripture), and on woo. Apparently this issue, highlighted by fellow skeptic Phil Ferguson on his Facebook page, is about trying to validate woo, or at least about implying that there might be something […]

This is why people dislike Gwyneth Paltrow

Have you ever seen a more off-putting Christmas ad than this one from goop, featuring their consciously uncoupled (but now remarried) Gwyneth Paltrow? The funniest part is what she gives herself for Christmas. On Saturday I’ll show a much better Christmas ad: the one from Sainsbury’s a few years ago that featured Mog the cat. […]