In this piece I write up my thoughts on the useful concepts of determinism and randomness, and how they impact on our conventional sense of free will....
Hello everyone, I trust you are all keeping well. We are living in an interesting moment in history, somehow I am feeling optimistic that we can learn a lot from it. Although, that is not what I will talk to you about in this letter. In fact, for now, I...
Hello everyone, I hope you are all doing well, both physically and psychologically. Please take all the common-sense steps you can to safeguard your own health and those around you. The first I had heard about the coronavirus was towards the end of January. I was attending a series of...
Hello everyone, I hope you are all doing really, really well! I haven't written in a while and I said I would have another letter by the end of the year. I have been back from my meditation retreat for over a week now. I don't have much to say...
Public opinion is often wrong. Mob opinion is almost always wrong. Religious opinion is wrong by definition.
Hello everyone, As always, I hope you are all doing well. In this letter, I would like to say goodbye. Well, at least for the time being. Tomorrow I will be leaving for a five-week-long meditation retreat and will not be in touch with anyone. So this will be the...
Hello everyone, I hope you have all been doing well. If you are well, then there isn't really much more you need. Behind the mask of evil There is no such thing as good, there is no such thing as evil. At least not in the way many of us...
“A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” When we are born we are given a name. We walk through life with a strong attachment to it, as if something about those syllables revealed who we really are. We pick up many more names on the way. I...
Hello everyone, I hope you are all doing well. Yesterday I had a conversation with a good friend about Sam Harris' book Lying. Sam's position was that we tend to be skilled at rationalising that it is justified when it is not and that we tend to deal needless harm...
Religion is the one area of our discourse where it is considered noble to pretend to be certain about things no human being could possibly be certain about.
Atheism is not a philosophy; it is not even a view of the world; it is simply an admission of the obvious.
The lies of the powerful lead us to distrust governments and corporations. The lies of the weak make us callous toward the suffering of others.
Every lie is an assault on the autonomy of those we lie to.
Lying is, almost by definition, a refusal to cooperate with others. It condenses a lack of trust and trustworthiness into a single act.
Unless someone is suicidal or otherwise on the brink, deciding how much he should know about himself seems the quintessence of arrogance.
When we presume to lie for the benefit of others, we have decided that we are the best judges of how much they should understand about their own lives.
Mahavira, the Jain patriarch, surpassed the morality of the Bible with a single sentence: 'Do not injure, abuse, oppress, enslave, insult, torment, torture, or kill any creature'.
If you think that Christianity is the most direct and undefiled expression of love and compassion the world has ever seen, you do not know much about the world's other religions.