Making Sense with Sam Harris - Subscriber Content
Making Sense with Sam Harris - Subscriber Content
Sam Harris
Join neuroscientist, philosopher, and best-selling author Sam Harris as he explores important and controversial questions about the human mind, society, and current events. Sam Harris is the author of five New York Times bestsellers. His books include The End of Faith, Letter to a Christian Nation, The Moral Landscape, Free Will, Lying, Waking Up, and Islam and the Future of Tolerance (with Maajid Nawaz). The End of Faith won the 2005 PEN Award for Nonfiction. His writing and public lectures cover a wide range of topics—neuroscience, moral philosophy, religion, meditation practice, human violence, rationality—but generally focus on how a growing understanding of ourselves and the world is changing our sense of how we should live. Harris's work has been published in more than 20 languages and has been discussed in The New York Times, Time, Scientific American, Nature, Newsweek, Rolling Stone, and many other journals. He has written for The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Economist, The Times (London), The Boston Globe, The Atlantic, The Annals of Neurology, and elsewhere. Sam Harris received a degree in philosophy from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in neuroscience from UCLA.
#356 - Islam & Freedom
Share this episode: https://www.samharris.org/podcasts/making-sense-episodes/356-islam-freedom Sam Harris and Rory Stewart debate whether Islam poses a unique threat to open societies. Rory Stewart is a leading thinker on international affairs and development currently serving as Special Advisor to GiveDirectly, which delivers cash directly to the world’s poorest households. Stewart was a member of the British Parliament for almost a decade, where he served as secretary of state for international development, prisons minister, minister for Africa, development minister for the Middle East and Asia, and minister for the environment. In addition to his work with GiveDirectly, Rory Stewart is also the co-host of The Rest is Politics podcast and author of How Not to Be a Politician. Website: https://www.givedirectly.org/ Twitter: @RoryStewartUK   Learning how to train your mind is the single greatest investment you can make in life. That’s why Sam Harris created the Waking Up app. From rational mindfulness practice to lessons on some of life’s most important topics, join Sam as he demystifies the practice of meditation and explores the theory behind it.
Feb 28
1 hr 34 min
#355 - A Falling World
Share this episode: https://www.samharris.org/podcasts/making-sense-episodes/355-a-falling-world Sam Harris speaks with Peter Zeihan about the unraveling world order. They discuss the Bretton Woods system, America’s role in securing the global supply chain, the coming end of American security guarantees, the shrinking of the US Navy, Houthi terrorism, deterring Iran, conflict in the Middle East, the future of Israel, the limits of immigration, the demographic pyramid, the demise of Europe, the war in Ukraine, the prospect of nuclear war, demographic collapse in China, loose nukes, America’s relative immunity to the world’s chaos, U.S. debt, the U.S. Southern border and immigration policy, why Trump will not win the 2024 election, and other topics. Peter Zeihan is a geopolitical strategist and a global energy demographic and security expert. Over the course of his career, Peter has worked for the US State Department in Australia, the DC think tank community, and helped develop the analytical models for Stratfor, one of the world’s premier private intelligence companies. In 2012, Peter founded his own firm, Zeihan on Geopolitics, in order to provide a select group of clients with direct, custom analytical products. Today those clients represent a vast array of sectors including energy majors, financial institutions, business associations, agricultural interests, universities, and the U.S. military. Peter is a critically acclaimed author whose first two books—The Accidental Superpower and The Absent Superpower—have been recommended by Mitt Romney, Fareed Zakaria, and Ian Bremmer. His other books include Disunited Nations: The Scramble for Power in an Ungoverned World and The End of the World Is Just the Beginning: Mapping the Collapse of Globalization. Website: https://zeihan.com/ Twitter: @PeterZeihan YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/@ZeihanonGeopolitics   Learning how to train your mind is the single greatest investment you can make in life. That’s why Sam Harris created the Waking Up app. From rational mindfulness practice to lessons on some of life’s most important topics, join Sam as he demystifies the practice of meditation and explores the theory behind it.
Feb 21
1 hr 38 min
#354 - Is Moral Progress a Fantasy?
Share this episode: https://www.samharris.org/podcasts/making-sense-episodes/354-is-moral-progress-a-fantasy Sam Harris speaks with John Gray about the possibility of moral and political progress. They discuss historical and current threats to freedom of thought, the limits of law, the spread of dangerous technology, failures of convergence on norms and values, Arthur Koestler, de-industrialization in Europe, fellow travelers and the progressive embrace of barbarism, Bertrand Russell, the absurdity of pacifism, utilitarianism, the moral landscape, George Santayana, moral and scientific realism, pragmatism, atheism, Schopenhauer, liberalism as an historical accident, and other topics. John Gray is the author of many critically acclaimed books, including The Silence of Animals, The Immortalization Commission, Black Mass, and Straw Dogs. His latest book is The New Leviathans: Thoughts After Liberalism. He is a regular contributor to The New York Review of Books, and he has been a professor of politics at Oxford, a visiting professor at Harvard and Yale, and a professor of European thought at the London School of Economics. He now writes full-time. Website: https://www.newstatesman.com/author/john-gray   Learning how to train your mind is the single greatest investment you can make in life. That’s why Sam Harris created the Waking Up app. From rational mindfulness practice to lessons on some of life’s most important topics, join Sam as he demystifies the practice of meditation and explores the theory behind it.  
Feb 16
1 hr 54 min
#353 - Race & Reason
Share this episode: https://www.samharris.org/podcasts/making-sense-episodes/353-race-reason Sam Harris speaks with Coleman Hughes about race, racism, and social justice. They discuss the ideal of "color blindness," race and crime, Coleman's experience at TED, LatinX, the confusion of the elites, Ibram X. Kendi, affirmative action, class differences, poverty, single-parent families, the death of George Floyd and the trial of Derek Chauvin, mob rule, Candace Owens, Christopher Rufo, guilt by association, John McWhorter, Glenn Loury, reparations for slavery and Jim Crow, immigrant communities, evidence of discrimination, Martin Luther King Jr., and other topics. Coleman Hughes is a writer, podcast host, and musician. He has written for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, National Review, Quillette, The Spectator, and the City Journal. Currently, he is a contributing writer at The Free Press and an analyst for CNN. His latest book is The End of Race Politics: Arguments for a Colorblind America. Website: https://colemanhughes.substack.com/ Twitter: @coldxman   Learning how to train your mind is the single greatest investment you can make in life. That’s why Sam Harris created the Waking Up app. From rational mindfulness practice to lessons on some of life’s most important topics, join Sam as he demystifies the practice of meditation and explores the theory behind it.  
Feb 11
1 hr 41 min
#352 - Hubris & Chaos
Share this episode: https://www.samharris.org/podcasts/making-sense-episodes/352-hubris-chaos Sam Harris speaks with Rory Stewart about the fraying world order. They discuss the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the problems with nation building, cultural ignorance, tolerance for corruption, our catastrophic withdrawal from Afghanistan, the role that Islam played in our failures in Afghanistan and Iraq, conspiracy theories, the influence of social media, cults of martyrdom, the war in Ukraine, the age of populism, Trump and the future of NATO, Brexit, the current state of politics, GiveDirectly, and other topics. Rory Stewart is a leading thinker on international affairs and development currently serving as Special Advisor to GiveDirectly, which delivers cash directly to the world’s poorest households. Stewart was a member of the British Parliament for almost a decade, where he served as secretary of state for international development, prisons minister, minister for Africa, development minister for the Middle East and Asia, and minister for the environment. In addition to his work with GiveDirectly, Rory Stewart is also the co-host of The Rest is Politics podcast and author of How Not to Be a Politician. Website: https://www.givedirectly.org/ Twitter: @RoryStewartUK   Learning how to train your mind is the single greatest investment you can make in life. That’s why Sam Harris created the Waking Up app. From rational mindfulness practice to lessons on some of life’s most important topics, join Sam as he demystifies the practice of meditation and explores the theory behind it.
Feb 4
1 hr 24 min
#351 - 5 Myths about Israel and the War in Gaza
Share this episode: https://www.samharris.org/podcasts/making-sense-episodes/351-5-myths-about-israel-and-the-war-in-gaza A transcript of this podcast is available on Sam’s blog.
Jan 29
42 min
#350 - Sharing Reality
Share this episode: https://www.samharris.org/podcasts/making-sense-episodes/350-sharing-reality Sam Harris speaks with Jonathan Rauch and Josh Szeps about the foundations of knowledge and the fragmentation of society. They discuss the state of the mainstream media, diversity of viewpoints, the "reality-based" community, what Covid did to our information landscape, the Overton window and the news value of controversial stories, the unique challenge of Trump and Trumpism, the dangers of a second Trump term, the problem of immigration and controlling the southern border of the U.S., and other topics. Jonathan Rauch, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington, is the author of eight books and many articles on public policy, culture, and government. He is a contributing writer for The Atlantic and recipient of the 2005 National Magazine Award, the magazine industry’s equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize. His latest book, published in 2021 by the Brookings Press, is The Constitution of Knowledge: A Defense of Truth, a spirited and deep-diving account of how to push back against disinformation, canceling, and other new threats to our fact-based epistemic order. Website: www.jonathanrauch.com Twitter: @jon_rauch Related Link: Trump’s Second Term Would Look Like This   Josh Szeps is an independent journalist. In New York City he was a founding host of HuffPost Live, the multi-award-winning streaming talk network, where he hosted thousands of hours of live TV with the world’s biggest names. In his native Australia, he hosted a national morning television show and had a talk radio show on the public broadcaster, ABC Radio. Josh left legacy media to focus on having bullshit-free conversations about provocative issues on his own platform, Uncomfortable Conversations with Josh Szeps, a podcast, live events operation, and YouTube channel. Website: https://bit.ly/UC_substack Twitter: @joshzepps   Learning how to train your mind is the single greatest investment you can make in life. That’s why Sam Harris created the Waking Up app. From rational mindfulness practice to lessons on some of life’s most important topics, join Sam as he demystifies the practice of meditation and explores the theory behind it.
Jan 23
1 hr 48 min
#349 - Generosity, Cynicism, and the Future of Doing Good
Share this episode: https://www.samharris.org/podcasts/making-sense-episodes/349-generosity-cynicism-and-the-future-of-doing-good Sam Harris speaks with Chris Anderson about generosity in the age of the Internet. They talk about the new spirit of cynicism in tech and finance, the problems with DEI, the Coleman Hughes controversy at TED, the norm of color blindness, the science of generosity, the leverage of the Internet, the false opposition between selfishness and selflessness, mixed motives in giving, results vs reward, the importance of intentions, looking for the good in people, digital business models, the economics of TED, TEDx, wealth inequality, the ethics of billionaires, philanthropy at scale, the power of pledges, the arguments of Peter Singer, the Sam Bankman-Fried scandal, problems with Effective Altruism, how to improve our digital lives, and other topics. Chris Anderson is the curator of TED. Trained as a journalist after graduating Oxford University, he launched more than 100 magazines and websites before acquiring TED through his nonprofit foundation in 2001. His TED mantra—"ideas worth spreading"—continues to blossom on an international scale, with over 3,600 videos free on TED.com and 100,000 more on YouTube. He is the author of The New York Times bestseller TED Talks and has overseen the introduction of, among others, the TEDx program, the TED-Ed initiative, and the Audacious Project, a bold new philanthropic model to inspire change at scale. His latest book is Infectious Generosity. Website: https://www.infectiousgenerosity.org/ Twitter: @TEDchris Related Link: Both the income pledge and the 2.5% wealth pledge can be signed at givingwhatwecan.org   Learning how to train your mind is the single greatest investment you can make in life. That’s why Sam Harris created the Waking Up app. From rational mindfulness practice to lessons on some of life’s most important topics, join Sam as he demystifies the practice of meditation and explores the theory behind it.
Jan 16
1 hr 50 min
#348 - The Politics of Antisemitism
Share this episode: https://www.samharris.org/podcasts/making-sense-episodes/348-the-politics-of-antisemitism Sam Harris speaks with Rabbi David Wolpe about the global response to the atrocities of October 7th, 2023. They discuss the difference between Israeli and diaspora Jews, the history and logic of antisemitism, the role of conspiracy theories, Great Replacement Theory, reasons for Jewish success, right-wing antisemitism, left-wing antisemitism, the response of Harvard to October 7th, the college presidents’ testimony before Congress, the future of DEI and civil discourse, the BDS movement, antisemitism vs anti-Zionism, Jewish acceptance at Ivy League universities, the antisemitism endemic to Islam, foreign funding of US universities, and other topics. David Wolpe is a Visiting Scholar at Harvard Divinity School, a Rabbinic Fellow at The Anti-Defamation League, a Senior Advisor to the Maimonides Fund, and the Emeritus Rabbi at Sinai Temple in Los Angeles. Rabbi Wolpe previously taught at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York, the American Jewish University in Los Angeles, Hunter College, and UCLA. He is the author of eight books, including the national bestseller Making Loss Matter: Creating Meaning in Difficult Times and  David, the Divided Heart. Website: www.facebook.com/RabbiWolpe Twitter: @rabbiwolpe  
Jan 5
1 hr 17 min
#347 - Finding Sanity in 2024
Share this episode: https://samharris.org/podcasts/making-sense-episodes/347-finding-sanity-in-2024   Learning how to train your mind is the single greatest investment you can make in life. That’s why Sam created the Waking Up app. From rational mindfulness practice to lessons on some of life’s most important topics, join Sam as he demystifies the practice of meditation and explores the theory behind it. Get 30 days free - https://www.wakingup.com/makingsense.
Jan 1
8 min
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