beyond zero and one machines psychedelics and consciousness

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Beyond Zero And One

Author : Andrew Smart
ISBN : 9781682190074
Genre : Computers
File Size : 68. 53 MB
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Can we build a robot that trips on acid? This is not a frivolous question, according to neuroscientist Andrew Smart. If we can’t, he argues, we haven’t really created artificial intelligence. In an exposition reminiscent of crossover works such as Gödel, Escher, Bach and Fermat’s Last Theorem, Andrew Smart weaves together Mangarevan binary numbers, the discovery of LSD, Leibniz, computer programming, and much more to connect the vast but largely forgotten world of psychedelic research with the resurgent field of AI and the attempt to build conscious robots. A book that draws on the history of mathematics, philosophy, and digital technology, Beyond Zero and One challenges fundamental assumptions underlying artificial intelligence. Is the human brain based on computation? Can information alone explain human consciousness and intelligence? Smart convincingly makes the case that true intelligence, and artificial intelligence, requires an appreciation of what is beyond the computational.

Mind And Cosmos

Author : Thomas Nagel
ISBN : 9780199919758
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 74. 54 MB
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The modern materialist approach to life has conspicuously failed to explain such central mind-related features of our world as consciousness, intentionality, meaning, and value. This failure to account for something so integral to nature as mind, argues philosopher Thomas Nagel, is a major problem, threatening to unravel the entire naturalistic world picture, extending to biology, evolutionary theory, and cosmology. Since minds are features of biological systems that have developed through evolution, the standard materialist version of evolutionary biology is fundamentally incomplete. And the cosmological history that led to the origin of life and the coming into existence of the conditions for evolution cannot be a merely materialist history, either. An adequate conception of nature would have to explain the appearance in the universe of materially irreducible conscious minds, as such. Nagel's skepticism is not based on religious belief or on a belief in any definite alternative. InMind and Cosmos, he does suggest that if the materialist account is wrong, then principles of a different kind may also be at work in the history of nature, principles of the growth of order that are in their logical form teleological rather than mechanistic. In spite of the great achievements of the physical sciences, reductive materialism is a world view ripe for displacement. Nagel shows that to recognize its limits is the first step in looking for alternatives, or at least in being open to their possibility.

The New Science Of Psychedelics

Author : David Jay Brown
ISBN : 9781620551424
Genre : Body, Mind & Spirit
File Size : 25. 55 MB
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What does the future hold for humanity, and can psychedelics help take us there? • Shares insights from the author’s discussions with Terence McKenna, Edgar Mitchell, Rupert Sheldrake, Deepak Chopra, Candace Pert, and others • Investigates the role of psychedelics in lucid dreaming, sex and pleasure enhancement, morphic field theory, the survival of consciousness, encounters with nonhuman beings, and the interface between science and spirituality For as long as humanity has existed, we have used psychedelics to raise our levels of consciousness and seek healing--first in the form of visionary plants such as cannabis and now with the addition of human-created psychedelics such as LSD and MDMA. These substances have inspired spiritual awakenings, artistic and literary works, technological and scientific innovation, and even political revolutions. But what does the future hold for humanity--and can psychedelics help take us there? Sharing insights from his discussions with luminaries such as Terence McKenna, Edgar Mitchell, Candace Pert, Deepak Chopra, Andrew Weil, Jerry Garcia, Albert Hofmann, Annie Sprinkle, and Rupert Sheldrake, author David Jay Brown explores the revelations brought about through his psychedelic experiences and his work with visionaries of the psychedelic and scientific communities. He investigates the role of psychedelics in lucid dreaming, time travel, sex and pleasure enhancement, morphic field theory, the survival of consciousness after death, encounters with nonhuman beings, and the interface between science and spirituality. Examining the ability of psychedelic drugs to incite creativity, neurogenesis, and the evolution of consciousness, he explains that they are messengers from the plant world designed to help elevate our awareness and sense of interconnectedness. Revealing not only what psychedelics can teach us about ourselves and the world around us, Brown also shows how they are preparing humanity for a future of enlightened minds and worlds beyond our solar system.

Paths Beyond Ego

Author : Roger N. Walsh
ISBN : 0874776783
Genre : Psychology
File Size : 73. 66 MB
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Fifty essays discuss psychotherapy, meditation, dreams, psychedelics, ethics, philosophy, science, and ecology

Conversations On Consciousness

Author : Susan Blackmore
ISBN : 0198039891
Genre : Science
File Size : 84. 39 MB
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In Conversations on Consciousness, Susan Blackmore interviews some of the great minds of our time, a who's who of eminent thinkers, all of whom have devoted much of their lives to understanding the concept of consciousness. The interviewees, ranging from major philosophers to renowned scientists, talk candidly with Blackmore about some of the key philosophical issues confronting us in a series of conversations that are revealing, insightful, and stimulating. They ruminate on the nature of consciousness (is it something apart from the brain?) and discuss if it is even possible to understand the human mind. Some of these thinkers say no, but most believe that we will pierce the mystery surrounding consciousness, and that neuroscience will provide the key. Blackmore goes beyond the issue of consciousness to ask other intriguing questions: Is there free will? (A question which yields many conflicted replies, with most saying yes and no.) If not, how does this effect the way you live your life; and more broadly, how has your work changed the way you live? Paired with an introduction and extensive glossary that provide helpful background information, these provocative conversations illuminate how some of the greatest minds tackle some of the most difficult questions about human nature.

Waking Up

Author : Sam Harris
ISBN : 9781451636031
Genre : Body, Mind & Spirit
File Size : 61. 58 MB
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For the millions of Americans who want spirituality without religion, Sam Harris’s latest New York Times bestseller is a guide to meditation as a rational practice informed by neuroscience and psychology. From Sam Harris, neuroscientist and author of numerous New York Times bestselling books, Waking Up is for the twenty percent of Americans who follow no religion but who suspect that important truths can be found in the experiences of such figures as Jesus, the Buddha, Lao Tzu, Rumi, and the other saints and sages of history. Throughout this book, Harris argues that there is more to understanding reality than science and secular culture generally allow, and that how we pay attention to the present moment largely determines the quality of our lives. Waking Up is part memoir and part exploration of the scientific underpinnings of spirituality. No other book marries contemplative wisdom and modern science in this way, and no author other than Sam Harris—a scientist, philosopher, and famous skeptic—could write it.


Author : Erik Davis
ISBN : 9781583949313
Genre : Computers
File Size : 65. 60 MB
Format : PDF, Kindle
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How does our fascination with technology intersect with the religious imagination? In TechGnosis—a cult classic now updated and reissued with a new afterword—Erik Davis argues that while the realms of the digital and the spiritual may seem worlds apart, esoteric and religious impulses have in fact always permeated (and sometimes inspired) technological communication. Davis uncovers startling connections between such seemingly disparate topics as electricity and alchemy; online roleplaying games and religious and occult practices; virtual reality and gnostic mythology; programming languages and Kabbalah. The final chapters address the apocalyptic dreams that haunt technology, providing vital historical context as well as new ways to think about a future defined by the mutant intermingling of mind and machine, nightmare and fantasy. From the Trade Paperback edition.

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