ML192: Iain McGilchrist on The Matter with Things, The 4 Paths to Understanding & Answering The Big Questions
Iain McGilchrist is a psychiatrist, former fellow of All Souls College Oxford, and author of The Master and His Emissary and The Matter with Things.
Who are we? What is the world? How can we understand consciousness, matter, space and time? Do we have a purpose? What is the divine? Our answers to these questions are important because our view of humanity and the world around us shapes what we do and how we live.
While our current perspective has allowed us to make remarkable progress in increasing our material wealth and extending our lifespans, the costs of this worldview are catching up with us, including the assault on nature and destruction of culture. What we need is a new way of thinking – one that takes the best of the progress we have made but restores the important values we seem to have lost.
Iain McGilchrist has taken on this challenge. In his new book The Matter with Things, which forms the basis for today’s conversation, Iain uses the disciplines of neurology, philosophy and physics to tackle the big questions and paint a new picture of humanity and the world.
In the episode, we speak about:
- The key differences between the left and right hemispheres and how they shape your view of the world
- The 4 pathways to understanding - science, reason, intuition & imagination
- How the big problems we face including the assault on Nature, destruction of Culture and dismissal of the Divine are all related
We also talk about the significance of morality, the nature of truth and beauty and the intersection of science and religion. This was a genuinely perspective shifting conversation that will change the way you look at yourself and the world around you.
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