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23 August 2016

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When the afterlife became a reward

Psychologist Daniel Ogilvie traces the evolution of religious beliefs from prehistory onward.
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In this video:

Will AI lead to greater inequality?

Robin Hanson and James Hughes consider the economic effects of future tech. Plus: Robot “zombies” vs. conscious AI.

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Is Trump’s endgame Trump TV?

Bill Scher and Matt Lewis discuss whether hiring Breitbart’s Stephen Bannon is Trump’s first step toward building a media empire.

The importance of philosophy

Daniel Kaufman and Massimo Pigliucci on why the discipline is more than a series of intellectual exercises. Plus: Making progress in ethics.

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Why political narratives matter

Matt Lewis argues that the post-election story Republicans tell themselves will determine whether the GOP successfully modernizes. Plus: The possible damage of a protest vote.

How neocons paved the way for Trump

Journalist Jim Lobe argues that some of Donald Trump’s harshest critics have been inadvertently building a political base for him for decades.

When does a robot become a slave?

Robert Wright and philosopher Susan Schneider consider the moral implications of conscious AI. Plus: Uploading consciousness.

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Many flavors of Quakers

Benigno Sánchez-Eppler on the diversity of practices and beliefs in the Religious Society of Friends. Plus: How war brought different Quakers together.

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Sending messages into the void?

Ben Perry and Emily Brewer consider the practice of prayer and what works for them. Plus: Is “religious violence” really religious?

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What’s religion good for?

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Philip Menchaca and Jessica Sherry consider what “cargo cults” show about the function of religion. Plus: The unique beliefs of the John Frum movement.

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What is Psychedelic Buddhism?

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Douglas Osto, author of Altered States, describes a new kind of American spirituality that has emerged since the 1960s. Plus: Gateway drugs to Buddhism.

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The metaphysical drama behind a human one

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Religious scholar Vadim Putzu gives examples of Kabbalist interpretations of the Torah. Plus: The universe as a speech act.

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The psychology of victim blaming

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Professor Liane Young describes the cognitive biases behind unfortunate thinking patterns. Plus: “They just hate us.”

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The DMZ

Why conservatives shouldn’t leave the GOP just yet

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Bill Scher and Matt Lewis discuss whether it’s still possible to “deTrumpify” the Republican party. Plus: Is it okay to not vote?

The DMZ

Is it okay not to vote this time?

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Matt Lewis argues that we do not have a moral obligation to show up at the ballot box in November.