Sam Harris discusses his latest book, The Moral Landscape.
About The Moral Landscape:
Sam Harris tears down the wall between scientific facts and human values, arguing that most people are simply mistaken about the relationship between morality and the rest of human knowledge. Harris urges us to think about morality in terms of human and animal well-being, viewing the experiences of conscious creatures as peaks and valleys on a "moral landscape". Because there are definite facts to be known about where we fall on this landscape, Harris foresees a time when science will no longer limit itself to merely describing what people do in the name of "morality"; in principle, science should be able to tell us what we ought to do to live the best lives possible.
Listen to the The Moral Landscape.
©2010 Sam Harris (P)2010 Simon & Schuster, Inc.
I love espionage, legal, and detective thrillers but listen to most genres. Very frequent reviews. No plot spoilers! Please excuse my typos!
Sam Harris is a very intelligent man and a serious scientist. I agree that belief in god(s) is totally unnecessary to developing an appropriate moral system and that, indeed, some/most religions are indeed immoral when taken to dogmatic excess. I disagree with his militant atheism which he basically turns into his religion. I make that statement not only based on The Moral Landscape but on the sum of all of his writings and lectures on the topic of morality and religion.
The cases that Harris makes against Christianity's excesses in Letters to a Christian Nation and Islam's excesses in Islam and the Future of Tolerance are valid. But in his The End of Faith: Religion, Terror and the Future of Reason Harris fails to make the case against the excesses of militant atheism which is also a religion, his religion. During the French Revolution militant atheists lopped off the heads of thousands of their fellow citizens. Communists, militant atheists, have killed millions in the USSR, China, Cambodia, and elsewhere.
We cannot know that which is unknowable. That is true about the existence of god(s) whether it is a theist who claims that higher power definitely exists or about militant atheists like Sam Harris who claim to know that such a higher power does exist.
Nevertheless, I find atheists like Sam Harris, Richard Dawkins, and Christopher Hitchens well worth listening to and reading.
I read science, biographies, histories, mysteries, adventures, thrillers, educationals, linguistics but not no way, not no how, romances.
I listened to this presentation and I read the book. In fact, I've read everything Harris has written. And here's the thing, this is not that great of a presentation. But the book is well worth it. Harris attempts to generate from scratch a whole new way of examining morality and ethics and building a moral code from the ground up in a logical, scientific way. And he succeeds. The book, Moral Landscape is great. But this intro to it is lacking in the excitement and genius of the full book. Skip this, buy the book.
I will definitely buy the book. Listening to Sam Harris is always a pleasure and the examples he mentions in this overview are interesting, current and poignant. Listen to this before deciding to buy the book, you won't be disappointed.
In The Moral Landscape, Sam Harris bravely steps outside of a long held and wide spread belief to challenge the idea that science has nothing to offer in terms of morality. He brilliantly shows that not only does science have something to offer but science is the only system that has anything to offer. This book lays the groundwork for the only possible way to progress morally into the future.
The best part of the story was the examples that make the subtleties more obvious and the metaphors that make comparisons to more familiar topics making it easier to understand for a less technical reader.
The performance was perfect to relay the information in a clear and easy to understand style. Sam Harris is a pleasure to listen to, his calm and steady speaking helps keep me interested and makes the words easy to absorb.
I had complex feelings about this book. It can be difficult to hear a new idea that challenges one you already have but very enjoyable to gain a new perspective and have a deeper understanding.
This book is the most compelling and insightful work I have ever come across on the topic of morality. This book represents a step forward in ways of thinking that will help humans find the right path in the future.
Frustrating to clearly hear an incoherent hypothesis, but Sam delivered one here.
If you love logic, you will hate this!
for those who like question their beliefs, motives and actions. the talk is insightful as it tackles certain topics with unbiased logic. the journey to open mindedness may be tough for some but this should definitely be insightful.
I'm going to listen to the book now. I think this discussion proved to me that the book will provide a solid foundation for the argument that morality can be what we make it and we had the tools to do so already.
authors should do this more. the audio samples just do not cut it.
A book like this is necessary to make the future a better one. Harris is brave and brilliant. His presentation here is a perfect description of the contents and intent. Get the book.
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