9 episodes

Join neuroscientist, philosopher, and five-time New York Times best-selling author Sam Harris as he explores important and controversial questions about the mind, society, current events, moral philosophy, religion, and rationality—with an overarching focus on how a growing understanding of ourselves and the world is changing our sense of how we should live.

Sam is also the creator of the Waking Up app. Combining Sam’s decades of mindfulness practice, profound wisdom from varied philosophical and contemplative traditions, and a commitment to a secular, scientific worldview, Waking Up is a resource for anyone interested in living a more examined, fulfilling life—and a new operating system for the mind.

Waking Up offers free subscriptions to anyone who can’t afford one, and donates a minimum of 10% of profits to the most effective charities around the world. To learn more, please go to WakingUp.com.

Sam Harris received a degree in philosophy from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in neuroscience from UCLA.

Follow Sam on Twitter: @SamHarrisOrg

The Best of Making Sense with Sam Harris Sam Harris

    • Science
    • 4.5 • 141 Ratings

Join neuroscientist, philosopher, and five-time New York Times best-selling author Sam Harris as he explores important and controversial questions about the mind, society, current events, moral philosophy, religion, and rationality—with an overarching focus on how a growing understanding of ourselves and the world is changing our sense of how we should live.

Sam is also the creator of the Waking Up app. Combining Sam’s decades of mindfulness practice, profound wisdom from varied philosophical and contemplative traditions, and a commitment to a secular, scientific worldview, Waking Up is a resource for anyone interested in living a more examined, fulfilling life—and a new operating system for the mind.

Waking Up offers free subscriptions to anyone who can’t afford one, and donates a minimum of 10% of profits to the most effective charities around the world. To learn more, please go to WakingUp.com.

Sam Harris received a degree in philosophy from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in neuroscience from UCLA.

Follow Sam on Twitter: @SamHarrisOrg

    #219 — The Power of Compassion

    #219 — The Power of Compassion

    Sam Harris speaks with James R. Doty about his memoir Into the Magic Shop: A Neurosurgeon’s Quest to Discover the Mysteries of the Brain and the Secrets of the Heart. They discuss the significance of childhood stress, the possibility of changing one’s core beliefs about oneself, the relationship between surgeons and their patients, the nature of compassion, the Dalai Lama, the relationship between wealth and empathy, the worsening problem of social inequality, the physiology of compassion, the broken healthcare system in the U.S., and other topics.
    James R. Doty is a clinical professor in the Department of Neurosurgery at Stanford University and the director of the Center for Compassion and Altruism Research and Education at Stanford University School of Medicine. 
    As director of CCARE, Dr. Doty has collaborated on a number of research projects focused on compassion and altruism including the use of neuro-economic models to assess altruism, use of the CCARE-developed compassion cultivation training in individuals and its effect, assessment of compassionate and altruistic judgment utilizing implanted brain electrodes and the use of optogenetic techniques to assess nurturing pathways in rodents. Presently, he is developing collaborative research projects to assess the effect of compassion training on immunologic and other physiologic determinants of health, the use of mentoring as a method of instilling compassion in students and the use of compassion training to decrease pain.
    Dr. Doty is also an inventor, entrepreneur and philanthropist having given support to a number of charitable organizations including Children as the Peacemakers, Global Healing, the Pachamama Alliance and Family & Children Services of Silicon Valley. He is on the Board of Directors of a number of non-profit foundations including the Dalai Lama Foundation, of which he is chairman and the Charter for Compassion International of which he is vice-chair. He is also on the International Advisory Board of the Council for the Parliament of the World’s Religions. He also writes for The Huffington Post.
    Twitter: @jamesrdotymd
     
    Episodes that have been re-released as part of the Best of Making Sense series may have been edited for relevance since their original airing.

    • 36 min
    #136 — Digital Humanism

    #136 — Digital Humanism

    Sam Harris speaks with Jaron Lanier about the economics, politics, and psychology of our digital lives. They discuss the insidious idea that information should be free, what we should want from an advanced economy, the role of advertising, libertarianism in Silicon Valley, the problems with social media, and other topics.
    Jaron Lanier is a scientist, musician, and writer best known for his work in virtual reality and his advocacy of humanism and sustainable economics in a digital context. His 1980s start-up VPL Research created the first commercial VR products and introduced avatars, multi-person virtual world experiences, and prototypes of major VR applications such as surgical simulation. His books Who Owns the Future? and You Are Not a Gadget were international bestsellers, and Dawn of the New Everything was named a 2017 best book of the year by The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, and Vox. His most recent book is 10 Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now.
    If the Best Of Making Sense podcast logo in your player is BLACK & WHITE, you can SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all full-length episodes at samharris.org/subscribe.
     
    Episodes that have been re-released as part of the Best of Making Sense series may have been edited for relevance since their original airing.

    • 27 min
    #77 — The Moral Complexity of Genetics

    #77 — The Moral Complexity of Genetics

    Sam Harris speaks with Siddhartha Mukherjee about the human desire to understand and manipulate heredity, the genius of Gregor Mendel, the ethics of altering our genes, the future of genetic medicine, patent issues in genetic research, and other topics.
    Siddhartha Mukherjee is a cancer physician and researcher. He is an assistant professor of medicine at Columbia University and a staff cancer physician at the CU/NYU Presbyterian Hospital. A former Rhodes scholar, he graduated from Stanford University, University of Oxford (where he received a PhD studying cancer-causing viruses) and from Harvard Medical School. His laboratory focuses on discovering new cancer drugs using innovative biological methods. He has published articles and commentary in such journals as Nature, New England Journal of Medicine, Neuron and the Journal of Clinical Investigation and in publications such as the New York Times, The New Yorker, and the New Republic. His work was nominated for Best American Science Writing, 2000. He won the Pulitzer Prize for his book The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer. His most recent book is The Gene: An Intimate History.
    If the Best Of Making Sense podcast logo in your player is BLACK & WHITE, you can SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all full-length episodes at samharris.org/subscribe.
     
    Episodes that have been re-released as part of the Best of Making Sense series may have been edited for relevance since their original airing.

    • 33 min
    #137 — Safe Space

    #137 — Safe Space

    Sam Harris speaks with Jonathan Haidt about his book The Coddling of the American Mind. They discuss the hostility to free speech that has grown more common among young adults, recent moral panics on campus, the role of intentions in ethical life, the economy of prestige in “call out” culture, how we should define bigotry, systemic racism, the paradox of progress, and other topics.
    Jonathan Haidt is the Thomas Cooley Professor of Ethical Leadership at New York University’s Stern School of Business. He received his Ph.D. in social psychology from the University of Pennsylvania in 1992 and then did post-doctoral research at the University of Chicago and in Orissa, India. He taught at the University of Virginia for 16 years before moving to NYU-Stern in 2011. He was named one of the “top global thinkers” by Foreign Policy magazine, and one of the “top world thinkers” by Prospect magazine. He is the co-developer of Moral Foundations theory, and of the research site YourMorals.org. He is a co-founder of HeterodoxAcademy.org, which advocates for viewpoint diversity in higher education. He is the author of The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom and The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion. His latest book (with Greg Lukianoff) is The Coddling of the American Mind: How good intentions and bad ideas are setting a generation up for failure.
    If the Best Of Making Sense podcast logo in your player is BLACK & WHITE, you can SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all full-length episodes at samharris.org/subscribe.
     
    Episodes that have been re-released as part of the Best of Making Sense series may have been edited for relevance since their original airing.

    • 39 min
    #127 — Freedom From the Known

    #127 — Freedom From the Known

    Sam Harris speaks with Michael Pollan about his book How to Change Your Mind. They cover the resurgence of interest in psychedelics in clinical practice and end-of-life care, the “betterment of well people,” the relationship between thinking and mental suffering, the differences between psychedelics and meditation, the non-duality of consciousness, the brain’s “default mode network,” their experiences with various psychedelics, and other topics.
    Michael Pollan is the author of eight books, including Cooked, Food Rules, In Defense of Food, The Omnivore’s Dilemma, and The Botany of Desire, all of which were New York Times bestsellers. A longtime contributor to the New York Times Magazine, he also teaches writing at Harvard and the University of California, Berkeley. In 2010, TIME magazine named him one of the one hundred most influential people in the world. His most recent book is This Is Your Mind on Plants.
    Twitter: @michaelpollan
    If the Best Of Making Sense podcast logo in your player is BLACK & WHITE, you can SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all full-length episodes at samharris.org/subscribe.
     
    Episodes that have been re-released as part of the Best of Making Sense series may have been edited for relevance since their original airing.

    • 44 min
    #173 — Anti-Semitism and Its Discontents

    #173 — Anti-Semitism and Its Discontents

    Sam Harris speaks with Bari Weiss about her book How to Fight anti-Semitism. They discuss the three different strands of anti-Semitism (rightwing, leftwing, and Islamic), the Tree of Life shooting in Pittsburgh, the difference between anti-Semitism and other forms of racism, the history of anti-Semitism in the U.S., criticisms of Israel, and other topics.
    Bari Weiss is the editor of Common Sense and the host of the podcast Honestly. From 2017 until 2020, Bari was a staff writer and editor for the Opinion section of The New York Times. Before joining the Times, Bari was an op-ed editor at the Wall Street Journal and an associate book review editor there. For two years, she was a senior editor at Tablet, the online magazine of Jewish news, politics, and culture, where she edited the site's political and news coverage. She regularly appears on shows like The View, Morning Joe and Real Time with Bill Maher.
    If the Best Of Making Sense podcast logo in your player is BLACK & WHITE, you can SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all full-length episodes at samharris.org/subscribe.
     
    Episodes that have been re-released as part of the Best of Making Sense series may have been edited for relevance since their original airing.

    • 47 min

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5
141 Ratings

141 Ratings

Syncopy13 ,

A man with character, values, intelligence and wit.

I’ve been practicing meditation through Sam Harris’ Waking Up App almost from the beginning. You learn a lot about a person when they explain complex ideas with compassion and sincerity. A lot of what Sam has to say is based on his experience of life and what is true. Seeking the truth, aren’t we all? Getting the truth is not always pleasant, especially when the truth conflicts with your world view. Understanding that cognitive dissonance, holding conflicting beliefs and making sense of them, finding a path through life and suffering less that is the journey we are on.
Thank you Sam, you have made my world a better place.

Kev. Durr ,

Why the money begging?

I love Sam Harris but not to the point where I’d have to pay for a subscription to listen to a whole podcast. For F’s sake it’s a podcast!

MnReview ,

garbage

more garbage from fascist commie democrat trash

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