Tag Archives: philosophy

Samhain: Feast of the Dead

Tonight is the Pagan festival of Samhain, more commonly celebrated as Halloween. At Samhain Pagans celebrate our ancestors & beloved dead. It also offers an opportunity to meditate on our mortality, a fundamental aspect of embodiment which arguably makes life … Continue reading

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The Stupidity of Rationalism

Last weeks edition of ‘In Our Time’ (BBC Radio 4) discussed game theory and gave a telling account of a scenario called The Prisoners Dilemma. Imagine that Jo and Jack have been arrested for a crime. The police know they’re guilty but can’t prove it, so … Continue reading

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Eugene Gendlin

Writing a PhD thesis on embodied knowing was a tricky task and at times I doubted that I could research something so nebulous. My big breakthrough came when I read the work of contemporary philosopher and psychologist Eugene Gendlin. Gendlin … Continue reading

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Merleau-Ponty

This is the first of a series of posts that introduce thinkers who have been especially influential on my work. I begin with the French philosopher Merleau-Ponty (1908-1961), who was a pioneer in the study of embodiment. Merleau-Ponty was fascinated by our ‘being-in-the-world’ – the way … Continue reading

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London’s burning

Ubuntu is an African word which can be inadequately translated as ‘humanness’. It may, in fact, be untranslatable, but the principle is expressed in the African saying: ‘Umuntu ngumuntu ngabantu’ – ‘A person is a person through other persons’. One of the most influential Western philosophers claimed that … Continue reading

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What is the body?

What do somatic trainers talk about on a week-end get together? One hot topic was exploring what the body might be. We had a brainstorm on that topic one evening and selected our best one-liners for broadcast. This playful exercise suggests that there … Continue reading

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Descartes revisited

My previous post (Descartes’ stove: Philosophers and place) had more responses than any before it. Although there was only one blog comment, there’s been a lively conversation over on my Facebook page. I want to pick up on two themes of that discussion: Am … Continue reading

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Descartes’ stove: Philosophers and place

Descartes is considered to be the father of modern philosophy. No wonder we’re in such a mess! You’re probably familiar with his theory, but to recap: Descartes considered the possibility that some very powerful, cunning and malicious demon might be deceiving him. He reasons that there … Continue reading

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Cognitive science: a multi-discipline

Human cognition is a complex business and researching it calls on wide range of disciplines. A conservative estimate gives us a motley crew of 7: Biology Chemistry Psychology Information science Philosophy Anthropology Linguistics It’s a delightful mix of hard and soft sciences, … Continue reading

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