September 23, 2022
This month's episode focuses on the psychology of emotions and the need to respect them. On the one hand we do not want to be controlled by negative emotions, but on the other, we cannot simply will them away. Further, we need positive emotions in order to live rich and loving lives; we cannot simply force our way forward forever.
Not respecting our emotions leads them to hijack us in many ways. A notable example is compulsive behavior or obsessions. The extreme versions of these we call addictions.
Matthew and Chantal developed their emotional fitness practice in order to reach people across a variety of cultural and economic backgrounds in South Africa, children in particular. Learn more about Matthew and Chantal's work at 5th Place.
Note: Paul received a one month access pass to the 5th Place class on emotional fitness prior to recording this episode. Nothing else of monetary value was exchanged.
August 30, 2022
For August Paul interviewed Scott Gazzoli of the Causing the Effect podcast. He's a wealth manager in Brooklyn who has been through a long and harsh spiritual journey. We touch on fitness and the psychology of achievement and spend the most time talking about the deceptiveness of material goals--money, sex, physical pleasure--how spiritually and psychologically they turn out to be deceptive and destructive.
Be sure to check out:
Scott: Causing the Effect Podcast, on YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram
Scott's recommended read, Mindfulness in Plain English
August 18, 2022
Paul was just interviewed by Scott Gazzoli on Causing the Effect. We talked about the Western spiritual tradition and culture and what has been lost as the West has been at war with itself since the Reformation.
You can check out the interview here:
Paul Giesting on Causing the Effect with Scott Gazzoli
June 6, 2022
Quick hit running down the SCS Conference for 2022 at Mundelein Seminary outside Chicago. The conference theme was the environment.
March 28, 2022
- Darcia Narvaez, who holds a Ph.D. in psychology from the University of Minnesota, is a prolific public intellectual who uses many tools of multimedia communication to do research and to address needs of everyday people. Her work enhances and taps deeply rooted wisdom about human nature so that it can be applied in everday tasks, such as parenting.
- She is a Professor of Psychology Emerita at the University of Notre Dame. Links to much of her work can be found at her personal website, as well as her Notre Dame faculty site.
- A capstone of Prof. Narvaez’s interdisciplinary scholarship is her 2014 book, Neurobiology and the Development of Human Morality: Evolution, Culture, and Wisdom. See her summary of the book.
- She received the Expanded Reason Award, a distinctive salute to innovative research in the spirit of Pope Benedict XVI, in 2017. The honor is bestowed by the Benedict XVI Vatican Foundation.
- In recent years, she has invested much research in a source of useful insights for families drawn from the concept of a nest for children that humans have inherited from their ancestors. Learn more about this work at org and evolvednest.org.
- Also see her blogs, including one she writes for Psychology Today.
Paul and Bill have interviewed Darcia Narvaez previously in episodes 55-56 and 96.
February 28, 2022
As the emcee noted at a concert here in Lander, a Musical History Tour, the Renaissance--the period when Europe revived its intellectual life by re-evaluating the writings of the Hellenistic past--ends around the year 1600, give or take. By that time, the focus had shifted toward going beyond the ancients instead of merely revisiting their achievements. This shift in focus happened on a different schedule in different fields, to be certain. Music may have been well ahead of the ancients already in the high medieval period. The Scholastics, and indeed their Arabian predecessors, while firmly rooted in Aristotle and the Neoplatonists, were already progressing beyond those foundations in the thirteenth century. On the other hand, painting and sculpture may not have outstripped the Greeks and Romans until the nineteenth century.
In any case, the seventeenth century would be the one in which Greek mathematics and Aristotelian natural philosophy gave way precipitously to new approaches. Algebra, lurking in the background of Greek thought and poking its head above the canopy in Arabian and Italian mathematics, would finally spawn analytic geometry and calculus. The focus and methods of natural philosophy would shift in many ways, including the use of mathematics and a great increase in the number of people collecting observations and conducting experiments and discussing their results with others. The existing sciences of astronomy, mechanics, botany, and zoology would be transformed, and chemistry and geology would be born outright. Inventions like the telescope and microscope would begin to reveal unsuspected layers of richness in the universe.
-Bacon: bio and politics
-The Reformation had to attack Scholastic *theology* but the universities continued to be heavily Aristotelian
-Aristotle and the distinction between philosophy and science that would be inverted by the 19th century
-Aristotle's focus on deduction and Bacon's polemical critique of the syllogism: "The New Organon"
-The role of induction and statistical reasoning; Bacon's blind spot for mathematics and his tables
Image: Francis Bacon by Paul van Somer, courtesy Wikimedia (By Paul van Somer I - pl.pinterest.com, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=19958108)