Meet the Panelists (02:13)
Host Barry Smith explains the format of the debate and introduces philosopher Robert Eaglestone, business founder Sam Roddick, and author Peter York, who will each speak for a few minutes about their stance on "living in the moment."
Robert Eaglestone: The Pitch (04:22)
If it is assumed that Western philosophy evolved out of Greek philosophy, it can be assumed that philosophy rises out of people interacting together. Philosophy invented a binary opposition between thinking and being, and Plato thought thinking was elite while being was less so.
Sam Roddick: The Pitch (05:01)
Roddick uses examples to show that the quality of thinking is what is important. She discusses a prisoner who has been kept in solitary confinement longer than anyone else in the U.S. and is forced to use thinking as a survival mechanism to maintain sanity. She also talks about a rape victim in Rwanda who is HIV positive who used group therapy to think her way out of pain.
Peter York: The Pitch (07:06)
York bashes the idea of "spontaneity" as a characteristic of people, saying it is an unrealistic trope of an interesting, educated person who is unmarred by thinking. He says that the joy of doing things would not be so heightened if it were not for all of the thinking that is done the rest of the time.
Theme One: Happiness and Thought (05:25)
Roddick does not believe that thinking has intrinsic value and that focusing on being happier is incorrect, but that people should focus on reducing suffering and creating safety. Eaglestone says that it is not thinking, but becoming attuned to things that is important.
Theme Two: The Unexamined Life (08:51)
Smith asks whether the obsession with analyzing one's own happiness is overdone and needs to be given up, and Roddick says yes, and that the idea of happiness as a luxury is misconstrued. She continues to say that self-centered thinking leads to unhappiness. York thinks societal norms may induce anxiety, but always have and always will.
Theme Three: Living in the Moment (09:28)
One way of living in the moment, Roddick says, is observing, which does not require thinking but simple absorbing, which benefits thinking. York says that he does not know what mindfulness is, but that he is against it and that though neuroscience may be trying to explain it, neuroscience tries to explain a lot of things that it cannot. The panel continues to discuss the definition of mindfulness and the concept of experiencing things.
Credits: Thinking and Being: Philosophy in Life and Experience (02:29)
Credits: Thinking and Being: Philosophy in Life and Experience
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