This post is going to be a sort of a review of Thomas Nagel’s Mind and Cosmos: Why the Materialist Neo-Darwinian Conception of Nature Is Almost Certainly False, but also partially a review of John Dupré’s review of the book and some of my commentary/thoughts. I’ll be using Dupré’s review as a segue in explaining Nagel’s position, for reasons that will soon be obvious (https://ndpr.nd.edu/news/mind-and-cosmos-why-the-materialist-neo-darwinian-conception-of-nature-is-almost-certainly-false/). Since I have so many thoughts of my own on the topic Nagel covers, I can’t say that this is properly a review, as I won’t be sticking so closely to the text, in analysis.
I’ve decided to provide chess coaching services (services found on my “Schedule David” page, found by clicking here) for many reasons. The most-in-my-face reason is that I constantly field questions by tournament players, as well as some online players, the most ever-present being: How in the world did you improve your chess so quickly? When I played tournament chess between 2008 and 2010, I got the question regularly, especially toward the end of that period, when I began scoring against Experts –I am better than 20% against Experts in the 2000-2099 range. After not looking at a chess board in about four years –I left play due to migraines experienced as a result of diabetes, and other diabetic-related issues–, I have been able to return to study and competitive play, and I am getting questions much more now. What has compounded the interest of many players is that I’m an adult making this kind of progress, and adults typically a horrifically difficult time improving. Many adult players will sit in a 100-200 point rating band for 20 years, despite playing regularly and studying the game. I can name many examples. This all sort of a secondary reason for availing myself for formal coaching and advising –in “advising,” I mean to say that I will also be offering the programs that I used for my improvement. Answering the number of questions put to me would otherwise be impossible without a practical means of making room in my busy schedule. I have always felt rude for holding my routines, etc. as closely guarded secrets; but not only does it take time to convey to a group of individuals, but it also took a tremendous amount of time in research to develop my training methods and routines. Continue reading
Spending a year teaching philosophy has brought forth a number of experiences and realizations, many of which are negative, unfortunately. A portion of these are negative because of the structure of the institution and ways in which things are set up; and another moiety is negative because of the relaxation of standards at institutions of higher learning –and I expect it is the case that I’ve seen the worst of the worst at a community college, but, in discussing with fellow grad students, I fear that isn’t necessarily true. There certainly were positive takeaways, as well. In this reflection, I’d like to express my concern for the subject matter of ethics, mostly in terms of instruction, but also, in passing, in terms of the disrepair of the branch of philosophy. Continue reading
22nd Annual (2015) Kent State Philosophy Graduate Student Conference In Remembrance of May 4th (Part I)
Among all of the conferences that I have attended or presented at, Kent State’s Graduate Philosophy Conference was the most professionally done of the bunch. I think the reputation of this conference is growing, based on the quality of the papers presented (and from the number I heard that were submitted) and representatives present from top school; this year there were two Harvard students and one Oxford student presenting, along with some of the most creative philosophers-in-training from the American West to East Coast, California to New York, as it were. For anyone looking a good and productive venue to make intellectual progress, I strongly suggest submitting to this conference in the future. Continue reading