Some fascinating discussion by these two deep thinkers. So many ideas I would like to take into my own thinking.
eg: We need memetic versions of great ideas that give way to full explanations. that is, ideas need short memetic versions (“the hyperlink”), which can be easily understood in a word or two, and when clicked reveal the paragraph, which can reveal the essay, which in turn can reveal the book on the idea. Sam Harris’ ideas often don’t get ‘memed’ enough, and generally need 10 minute explanations … and some work needs to be done to develop memes for these powerful concepts.
eg: We are operating on world views that are 30 years out of date. What we need now are not “mutual fund” beliefs, but “hedge fund” ideas that take short positions and long positions on various parts of an argument.
eg: To have civil dialog, we need to be able to state our ‘opponent’s’ position in a way that they won’t scoff at, and better yet, with enough empathy and understanding that our opponent feels convinced that we ‘get’ their argument. Too many debates are phony debates with strawman arguments. If we fully understand our opponents’ views, we are ‘steelmanning’ … a practice that Harris argues for.
I probably don’t agree with either of these two on everything, but they sure do provoke mind expansion.