Science, epistemology, and the soul

What a journey we have been on. I hope we have managed to do more than critique the cognitivist techno-rationalist orthodoxy, and to provide some figures of thought that will serve you in the future. The way one conceives of the future depends on what one thinks one is, what one is part of, and what one participates in. There is thus no single future. A man on a gallows understands the term “future” differently from the spectator or the executioner. I addressed this theme in an address to a conference on The Future of Embodied Cognitive Science. All the talks are collated in this playlist.

We will use my final contribution as a vehicle for consideration of all the issues raised throughout this module. I want to hear what you have got from the module so far. I also want you to bring topics for discussion this week. What did the course material mean to you? Be prepared to contribute! I hope your encounter with these themes does not end here.

As we’re doing a sort of Show-and-Tell this week, I also submit this remarkable article I came across only today: Corwin, A. I. and Erickson-Davis, C. “Experiencing presence: an interactive model of perception.” I find it useful from a cognitive science perspective in that it addresses something which is obviously real, in a sense that an outsider has no right to deny, but that can be approached with scientific methods only obliquely. Nonetheless, in pursuing this elusive notion of God’s Presence, it reaches to Ecological Psychology, Neuroscience, Cultural Anthropology and beyond, all of which contribute something worthwhile, without destroying or invalidating the object of study.

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