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Sloww Sunday Newsletter 014 (April 26, 2020) — A Theory of Consciousness, Egoistic Altruism, How to be an Optimal Human, & More
Sloww Sunday is an email newsletter sharing inspiration to awaken the art of living.
In a modern world focused on the trendy, here’s your weekly dose of the timeless.
1 // Sloww Stuff
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The Hierarchy of Happiness is a free 50-page eBook with well over 100 viewpoints on how to be happy—externally, psychologically, and spiritually.
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I really enjoyed revisiting Man’s Search for Meaning. The extra step of converting long book summaries into condensed book how-tos is showing me how different a book can be when viewed from a more actionable lens. Hope you enjoy this one!
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2 // Video I’m Watching
A Selfish Argument for Making the World a Better Place – Egoistic Altruism (Kurzgesagt on YouTube | 7 mins)
This video introduces an interesting perspective—that humanity evolved from a zero-sum world to a positive-sum world. This positive-sum world has only existed for 0.1% of human history, so we have yet to get used to it.
“It has a consequence that feels really unintuitive. In a positive-sum world, it’s in your personal, selfish, best interest that every human on planet Earth is well off … There is a genuine selfish argument for making the world a better place. In a positive-sum world, the more people are well off, the better your own life is.” — Kurzgesagt
3 // Podcast I’m Listening To
Do We See Reality As It Is? — Donald Hoffman (Future Thinkers on YouTube | 16 mins)
I’m continuing to enjoy the Future Thinkers podcast. This week we have Donald Hoffman—Professor of Cognitive Sciences and researcher into visual perception, evolutionary psychology, consciousness, and AI.
If you like the first part, it gets even better in the following:
- The Case Against Reality (YouTube | 21 mins)
- Scientific Spirituality (YouTube | 21 mins)
- Hacking Our Reality Perception (YouTube | 14 mins)
You can listen to the full podcast on Future Thinkers (63 mins)
“For the first time that I know of, we have a mathematically precise theory of consciousness on the table in which consciousness itself is fundamental … And, it leads naturally to a theory of infinite consciousnesses. So, for the first time, we have a precise theory of what we may call spirituality.” — Donald Hoffman
4 // Article I’m Reading
How to Be an Optimal Human (Scientific American | 10 mins)
In this article, Kaufman covers 8 science-informed aspects of well-integrated, thriving human beings that he believes can help in your own journey toward greater health, growth, and happiness. I’m finishing Kaufman’s latest book, Transcend, this week.
“What does it take to be an optimal human being? Throughout history there has been much speculation. For Aristotle, the highest human good was eudaimonia. For Carl Rogers, it was the ‘fully functioning person’. For Abraham Maslow, it was ‘self-actualization’. For Erik Erickson, it was wisdom and integrity. For Erich Fromm, it was about having a ‘being’ orientation (in which you value personal growth and love) instead of a ‘doing’ orientation (in which you value material possessions and status).” — Scott Barry Kaufman
5 // Quote I’m Contemplating
Quote: “Do you have the patience to wait till your mud settles and the water is clear? Can you remain unmoving till the right action arises by itself?” — Lao Tzu (Tao Te Ching, Stephen Mitchell version)
Question: Are you acting with clarity of mind?
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Have a conscious week!
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