Twitter: @spacetimemind99 • @onemorebrown • @petemandik (@onemorebrown followed by 195 philosophers)
2014 to present
Average episode: 81 minutes
Open in Apple Podcasts • RSS
Categories: Interview-Style • Science and Technology • Two Hosts
Podcaster's summary: Philosophy professor Pete Mandik tackles topics ranging from the neuroscience of consciousness to the philosophical foundations of physics.
Discover other podcasts.
Episode 40: Crungus Among Us (with Alex Kiefer)
Pete Mandik is joined by philosopher and AI researcher Alex Kiefer (Monash University) to discuss some newsworthy Artificial Intelligence projects, especially Language Models such as LaMDA, DALL-E, and GPT-3. What are the spiciest possible takes on these systems, and is any take too spicy for Alex or Pete? How much of so-called human intelligence and consciousness is just a language game disconnected from reality? What’s a CRUNGUS, and how many are among us? Whose art will you consume when non-humans get be...
Episode 39: Complicated Moist Robots (with Tarik LaCour)
The first half of the episode is dedicated to illusionism. In the second half, we talk about Christianity in general and Mormonism in particular, with an eye toward how such religious traditions square with metaphysics and epistemologies that are broadly naturalistic, empiricist, and physicalist.
Episode 38: The Spirit of the Senses Session
Topics covered include the brain’s role in conscious experience, competing definitions of “consciousness”, hypnosis, near-death experiences, psychedelic drugs, cognitive behavioral therapy, the “self” and much much more.
Episode 37: Rainbow in the Dark (with Jacob Berger)
Get ready to interrogate some mind colors! Can the so-called qualitative aspects of consciousness be explained in holistic and functionalist terms that undermine anti-physicalist critiques? Can the consciousness of a mental state be wholly explained in terms of a non-conscious thought about it? To find out, Pete Mandik talks to Jacob Berger (Lycoming College) about Jake’s work on consciousness within the Higher-Order Thought approach. Pete and Jake also get into the closely related quality-space view of sen...
Episode 36: NeuroYogacara (with Bryce Huebner)
Behold!: The first new episode of SpaceTimeMind after a seven-year hiatus. Buddhist philosophy meets neuroscience when host Pete Mandik talks with Bryce Huebner (Georgetown U.) about his NeuroYogacara project. We talk about Yogacara and other nearby schools of Buddhist philosophy as we delve into meditation, psychedelic drugs, biopsychist approaches to consciousness, disgusting things, 4E cognition, and philosophy as life craft.
|2015-Oct-31 • 56 minutes|
Episode 35: Consciousness and Funky Content
In order to account for consciousness in terms of representational content, how FUNKY does the content need to be? Along the way we discuss the representation of inexistents and whether mathematical structuralism can shed light on the conceivability of undetectable qualia inversions. Is there any real difference (as opposed to a merely notational difference) between the square root of negative one and the negative square root of negative one? If so, what would that tell us about the question of whether inte...
|2015-Oct-16 • 57 minutes|
Episode 34: Awareness, Attention, and Globally Accessible Information
ATTENTION! Richard Brown and Pete Mandik shine their spotlights on the philosophy of mind of attention and awareness. Many philosophers of mind endorse the Transitivity Principle, the view that if you have a conscious state, you must be aware of that state. But what is the best account of the relevant notion of awareness? Is attending a kind of awareness? Further, is it a kind of awareness that is distinct from the awareness one has in virtue of perceiving, thinking about, or sensing something? Does it suff...
|2015-Sep-15 • 108 minutes|
Episode 33: The Philosophy of Mind of Pain (with David Pereplyotchik)
Prof. David Pereplyotchik once again joins Pete Mandik to tackle pain in the philosophy of mind. Can there be a scientific reductive explanation of pain. Can robots feel pain? Will this hurt? We here continue the conversation we started in SpaceTimeMind Episode 27.
|2015-Sep-01 • 73 minutes|
Episode 32: Technological Immortality and Secular Hell
Richard Brown and Pete Mandik debate the following proposal: The worst thing you can imagine happening to you is an event that has a non-zero probability of occurring at any given moment, and the longer you stay alive, the greater the chances become of that thing happening at some point in your lifetime. Would literally infinitely-lived immortals necessarily run into their own worst imaginable hell? Would even finite, but long-lived transhuman lifespans increase their chances of suffering by increasing thei...
|2015-Aug-15 • 61 minutes|
Episode 31: Future Philosophy
Get in the Delorean, Marty! It’s time for the future of philosophy and the philosophy of the future. Philosophers and chrononauts Richard Brown and Pete Mandik overclock their flux capacitors to see if philosophy has a chance of surviving into the deep future of the human race. In the first half of the episode, they discuss the future of life itself. Along the way they hit Nick Bostrom’s “Great Filter” argument, Susan Schneider’s argument that aliens will be robots, and Pete’s own “Metaphysical Daring” argu...
|2015-Jul-31 • 69 minutes|
Episode 30: Singularity Cinema: Ex Machina and Advantageous
Spoilers galore as philosophers Richard Brown and Pete Mandik wade up to their necks in spoilers to discuss recent cinematic depictions of (spoiler) artificial intelligence and (another spoiler) mind-uploading, especially in the 2015 films Ex Machina and Advantageous. DID WE MENTION THERE WILL BE SPOILERS? The first half of the episode largely focuses on Ex Machina and we shift to Advantageous for the second half. Also: Spoilers.
|2015-Jul-15 • 73 minutes|
Episode 29: The Rise and Fall of Phizzy Callizm and the Spiders From Mars
Gather up your microphysical constituents and embark on an epic audio odyssey wherein Richard Brown and Pete Mandik rock out about: physicalism, whether the mind is physical, how best to define "physical" and "physicalism," whether the physical universe is causally closed, and whether brainless spiders from Mars can have minds, etcetera, etcetera, and so on, and so forth. TO BE PLAYED AT MAXIMUM VOLUME
|2015-Jul-01 • 61 minutes|
Episode 28: Psychedelic Artificial Neural Networks
Cognitive philosophers Richard Brown and Pete Mandik examine recent claims by Google researchers to have implemented dreams, imagery, and hallucinations in artificial neural networks. The images created by these artificial systems are kind of cool, but can anything at all be learned from such projects about how the mind or brain actually functions? Richard and Pete move from there to debate connectionism, AI, and rationalist vs. empiricist methodologies in the philosophy of cognitive science. Special prize ...
|2015-Jun-15 • 102 minutes|
Episode 27: Pains and Brains (with David Pereplyotchik)
Pete Mandik is once again joined by David Pereplyotchik (see episode 25) and this time they enter into a world of pain. Are pains identical to states of brains? Are pains fully accessible only from the first-person point of view? Is there anything contradictory about the idea of unconscious pains? Can you merely seem to yourself to be suffering without actually really being in a state of suffering? Will Pete and David answer any of these questions about pain in the philosophy of mind?
|2015-Apr-15 • 101 minutes|
Episode 26: Your Digital Afterlives (with Eric Steinhart)
Pete Mandik talks to philosopher Eric Steinhart (William Paterson University) about his book, Your Digital Afterlives: Computational Theories of Life after Death. They dig deep into the computational and value-theoretic foundations of all existence. Other topics tackled include atheistic neopaganism, the cognitive science of hyper-arousal trances, the prudential self-concern of mind-uploads, entheogenic drugs, and Roko’s basilisk. Get comfy with a hot bowl of monads and enjoy the show while an infinite army...
|2015-Mar-18 • 109 minutes|
Episode 25: Leaning Into the Linguistic Turn (with David Pereplyotchik)
Pete Mandik is joined by David Pereplyotchik (assistant professor of philosophy at Kent State University) to sleep furiously on some colorless green ideas. Also, they talk about language. Grammar, meaning, truth, translation, Google, and the difficulty in faking deafness are just a few of the topics tackled.
|2015-Mar-01 • 97 minutes|
Episode 24: Fading Qualia
Is it a law of nature that if your neurons are gradually replaced with silicon chips, your qualia won’t thereby gradually fade? Can the armchair methodology of analytic metaphysics deliver knowledge of natural laws? Or can the boundaries of the nomologically possible be discerned only within the natural sciences? And who cares? Richard Brown and Pete Mandik, that’s who!
|2015-Feb-15 • 81 minutes|
Episode 23: Transhumanist Hot Tub (w Ken Williford)
Richard Brown takes a one-episode hiatus while Pete Mandik heads down to Texas to talk to philosopher Ken Williford. Pete and Ken discuss whether (1) it’s desirable for humans to transform themselves into something alien, (2) whether we or our brains are already alien to us, and (3) whether an “acquaintance relation” view of consciousness is consistent with physicalism.
|2015-Feb-01 • 86 minutes|
Episode 22: Time Shuffling, Finger Sausages, and a Brain Made out of Paper.
After two physics episodes in a row Richard Brown and Pete "Macho Bluff" Mandik dial the way-back machine to the Golden Era of Dinosaur Travel and kick out some old-school philosophy of mind jams. In part 1 ("Time Shuffling") they sort some stuff out about temporal counterpart theory and so-called “real identity.” In part 2 (“Finger Sausages”) they tackle the transparency of conscious experience and phenomenal acquaintance. In part 3 (“A Brain Made out of Paper”) they discuss the extended mind hypothesis an...
|2015-Jan-16 • 99 minutes|
Episode 21: Three Men and a Baby Universe (with Sean Carroll)
Physicist Sean Carroll joins philosophers Richard Brown and Pete Mandik on the SpaceTimeMind podcast to discuss, for example: anti-intellectual academics; intelligent design and fine tuning; entropy, decoherence, and the arrow of time, baby Benjamin-Button universes; Boltzmann brains; lambda cold dark matter; many worlds; disappearing worlds; interacting worlds. And much much more!
|2015-Jan-01 • 88 minutes|
Episode 20: Paradoxes of Physical Information
Philosophers of mind and science Richard Brown and Pete Mandik burn the book of the world while orbiting a decaying black hole with Maxwell’s demon, a reversible cellular automaton, and can of whoop-ass worms. Will they survive? Will one of them successfully execute the argumentative equivalent of the Five-Point-Palm Exploding-Heart-Technique against the other? And how would you even know?
|2014-Dec-14 • 93 minutes|
Episode 19: Fun, Pain, and Ontology (with Eric Kaplan)
Does all of reality exceed what we believe about it? Even the reality of fun? How about the reality of pain? Eric Linus Kaplan is an author (Does Santa Exist?), a TV writer (Big Bang Theory, Futurama), and an all-around philosophical dude (Buddhist monk, UC Berkeley philosophy doctoral student). Eric joins philosophy professors Richard Brown and Pete Mandik, co-hosts of the SpaceTimeMind podcast, for a discussion of ontology.
|2014-Nov-30 • 52 minutes|
Episode 18: Truth and Naturalism
Philosophers Richard Brown and Pete Mandik continue their discussion from the SpaceTimeMind podcast’s Episode 11 on Scientism. Here they focus on naturalistic versions of truth and reality. Can evolution by natural selection ground our ability to represent truths that transcend usefulness? If it can’t, what can?
|2014-Nov-15 • 90 minutes|
Episode 17: Memory, Emotion, and Consciousness (with Joe LeDoux)
Neuroscientist and rock star Joseph LeDoux (NYU) joins SpaceTimeMind podcast co-hosts and philosophers Richard Brown (CUNY) and Pete Mandik (WPU) to discus the neural bases of memory, emotion, and consciousness in human and non-human brains.
|2014-Nov-01 • 93 minutes|
Episode 16: Singularity and Sociopathy (with Roger Williams)
Philosopher kings Richard Brown and Pete Mandik are once again joined on the SpaceTimeMind podcast by science fiction author and essayist Roger Williams. In the first part of the episode we discuss the technological singularity as well as Williams' own singularity tale, The Metamorphosis of Prime Intellect. The themes of transformation continue on through to the last part of the episode, where we discuss Roger's essay, "Hannibal Lecter as Transhumanist Icon." So, slap some sim-stim 'trodes on your forehead,...
|2014-Oct-15 • 69 minutes|
Episode 15: Supernature (with Roger Williams and Gregg Caruso)
In this episode of the SpaceTimeMind podcast we discuss supernature, a hypothetical realm that is, in some sense, above and beyond the world accessible to the natural sciences. In part one of the episode, Richard Brown and Pete Mandik are joined by science fiction author Roger Williams. In part two, we are joined by philosopher Gregg Caruso, who you may remember from episode 7 on free will. If you notice anything strange occurring while you listen to this episode, please let us know about it at spacetimemin...
|2014-Oct-01 • 87 minutes|
Episode 14: Eternalism Versus Presentism (with Brit Brogaard)
A 3-D object, fully present in the now, walks into a bar where the bartender is a 4-D spacetime worm. The worm asks the object “Why so tense?” Further instantiations of such high-grade philoso-physical hilarity ensue in this, the third episode of the SpaceTimeMind podcast on the topic of time. Brit Brogaard is back by popular demand, and this time a Brogaard/Brown presentist team-up gives Pete “Erstwhile Eternalist” Mandik a run for his money…forever.
|2014-Sep-15 • 56 minutes|
Episode 13: Neurophilosophy and Consciousness (with Brit Brogaard)
Hide your brains; the neurophilosophers are coming! Philosopher and Neuroscientist Berit (Brit) Brogaard joins Richard Brown and Pete Mandik on the SpaceTimeMind podcast to discuss what makes some states of the mind or brain conscious and others unconscious. Is this sort of question answerable from a psychological or philosophical perspective that makes no essential reference to neuroscience? Or, instead, are neuroscientific data unavoidable in this domain? And: can Brit go a full ten minutes without using ...
|2014-Sep-01 • 60 minutes|
Episode 12: The Fourth Dimension
In this episode of the SpaceTimeMind podcast, Richard Brown and Pete Mandik continue their discussion from Episode 9 ("A Journey to the Edge of Hypertime”) and consider the view that time constitutes a fourth dimension analogous to the three spatial dimensions of height, width, and depth. What’s gained and what’s lost in viewing moments other than the present as analogous to places other than here? Do we lose an ability to account for change and motion? And if a computer simulation of a brain can have consc...
|2014-Aug-14 • 100 minutes|
Episode 11: Scientism
Good news everybody! Science-obsessed philosophers Richard Brown and Pete Mandik duke it out over which one is the most egregious purveyor of scientism, the view that anything worth knowing is worth knowing scientifically. Or is scientism just empiricism? And what the hack is that, anyway? Is it simply an affirmation of the superiority of sensory knowledge? Or is it at bottom a denial of necessary truths? Or is being a scientismologist just what happens when you label yourself as such to achieve greater soc...
|2014-Aug-01 • 100 minutes|
Episode 10: All Up In the Global Workspace of Consciousness (with Bernard Baars)
Neuroscience and philosophy meet in the arena of consciousness when neuroscientist guest Bernard Baars joins philosopher hosts Richard Brown and Pete Mandik on the SpaceTimeMind podcast. Topics we tackle include (1) the interface between science and philosophy, (2) the Global Workspace Theory of Consciousness, (3) the relevance of quantum mechanics for phenomenal consciousness, (4) the possibility of machine consciousness, and (5) Ned Block’s thesis that perceptual consciousness overflows cognitive access. ...
|2014-Jul-15 • 67 minutes|
Episode 9: A Journey to the Edge of Hypertime
This is the first of several episodes of the SpaceTimeMind podcast wherein amateur chrononauts Richard Brown and Pete Mandik tackle topics in the physics and metaphysics of time. In this episode, one of the main ideas we kick around is whether any moments exist beyond the present moment. Additionally, we tackle the issue of whether it makes any more sense to say that time flows than it does to say that space moves. If time flows at some rate, must there exist a hypertime relative to which first-order time c...
|2014-Jun-28 • 74 minutes|
Episode 8: Alien and Machine Minds (with Eric Schwitzgebel)
Could a robot or an alien have a mind even though its physical structure may contain nothing similar to a human brain? To address this, philosopher Eric Schwitzgebel once again joins Richard Brown and Pete Mandik to finish what we started in episode 4, “Death and Logic.” Here Richard defends brain-o-centrism against Eric’s “crazy-ism” (the view that something crazy has to be right about the metaphysics of consciousness) and Pete’s pro-AI, born-again functionalism (the view that minds are multiply realizable...
|2014-Jun-13 • 92 minutes|
Episode 7: The Illusion of Free Will (with Gregg Caruso)
You have only three options: One, you listen to this episode of your own free will. Two, you listen to this episode as a matter of pure chance, with neither cause nor reason. Three, you were predetermined since the big bang to listen to this episode. One way or another, you're going to hear philosopher Gregg Caruso join Pete Mandik as they gang up on Richard Brown, who intermittently operates under the illusion that he has libertarian free will.
|2014-May-29 • 97 minutes|
Episode 6: The Extended Mind (with Lara Beaty)
Vygotskian developmental psychologist Lara Beaty joins philosopher-scientists Richard Brown and Pete Mandik to tackle questions such as: Is the mind bigger than the brain? Does conceptual thought and even consciousness require the use of language or other sorts of social interaction? Which is morally preferable: making animals smarter or making humans stupider? Would it be totally cool to eat somebody who volunteered for it?
|2014-May-15 • 94 minutes|
Episode 5: Transhumanism and Existentialism
Neurophilosophers Pete Mandik and Richard Brown wax futurological on whether the post-human future will be populated by Kantian superheroes or Sartrean sociopaths. Other questions addressed include: Is your brain a douchebag? Are “uplifted" monkeys happy monkeys or sad monkeys? Is it OK to torture sims? And if so, what’s the best way to do it? Musical interludes provided by the New York Consciousness Collective and Quiet Karate Reflex.
|2014-Apr-28 • 97 minutes|
Episode 4: Death and Logic (with Eric Schwitzgebel)
People say that two things in life are certain. The first is that no one gets out alive. The second is that if possibly necessarily P, then necessarily P. But, are death and logic really certainties? If, for example, there exists an infinite number of situations which each contain an individual who is intrinsically similar to you, aren't you effectively immortal? And is there a single best logic to use in assessing such possibilities? Philosopher Eric Schwitzgebel joins Richard and Pete to tackle death and ...
|2014-Apr-14 • 51 minutes|
Episode 3: Consciousness explained (?) part 2: The nature of explanation
This is the second of a two part discussion between Richard and Pete concerning whether and how consciousness can be explained and whether it should be regarded as a fundamental feature of reality. In this episode, the discussion focuses on the question of what counts as an explanation and what norms govern good explanations in physics as well as in metaphysics.
|2014-Apr-06 • 49 minutes|
Episode 2: Consciousness explained (?) part 1: Computational Pythagoreanism
This is the first of a two part discussion between Richard and Pete concerning whether and how consciousness can be explained and whether it should be regarded as a fundamental feature of reality. In this episode, the discussion focuses on the view that everything that exists is ultimately computational/mathematical.