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is an association of people sympathetic to the idea that academic inquiry
should help humanity acquire more wisdom by rational means. Wisdom is
taken to be the capacity to realize what is of value in life, for oneself
and others. It includes knowledge, understanding and technological know-how,
and much else besides. Friends of Wisdom try to encourage universities
and schools actively to seek and promote wisdom by educational and intellectual
present, Friends of Wisdom communicate with one another in the main by
email (JISCMAIL). If you wish to join, click
HERE, and then click on "join or leave the list",
or email: nick [at] knowledgetowisdom.org
Copyright Nicholas Maxwell All Rights Reserved
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By Nicholas Maxwell
Cutting God in Half - And Putting the Pieces Together Again: A New Approach to Philosophy. Pentire Press, March 2010. This book will enthral anyone concerned about ultimate questions – the nature of the universe, the meaning of life, the fate of humanity. It is written in a lively, accessible style, and has original things to say about a number of fundamental issues. It argues that we need to sever the God-of-Power from the God-of-Value. The first is Einstein’s God, the underlying unity in the physical universe that determines how events occur. The second is what is of most value associated with human life – and sentient life more generally. Having cut God in half in this way, the problem then becomes to see how the two halves can be put together again. This is our basic problem: to see how our human world, imbued with meaning and value, can exist and best flourish embedded in the physical universe. This book tackles outstanding aspects of this problem, and in doing so throws out original ideas about science, education, religion, evolutionary theory, free will, quantum theory, and how we should go about tackling impending global crises such as population growth and global warming.
Cutting God in Half is available online here.
"In writing Cutting God in Half, Nicholas Maxwell has, as in his other books, focused on what really matters. It is a powerful, thought-provoking read - one that just might shift the reader's world-view in some positive directions."
What's Wrong With Science? Towards a People's Rational Science of Delight and Compassion, Pentire Press, September 2009. This second edition has a new Preface explaining how the book both exploits and develops Karl Popper's philosophy.
Neurotic?, Imperial College Press, London, December 2004.
Human World in the Physical Universe: Consciousness, Free Will and Evolution,
Rowman and Littlefield, Lanham, USA, 2001; Oxford, UK 2002.
Comprehensibility of the Universe: A New Conception of Science,
Oxford University Press, Oxford, pp i-xv + 316, January 2003, paperback
edition. This book is available online: click here.
Leemon McHenry, ed., Science and the Pursuit of Wisdom: Studies in the Philosophy of Nicholas Maxwell, Ontos Verlag, February 2009. Contains two chapters by me, How Can Life of Value Best Flourish in the Real World? and Replies and Reflections, and twelve chapters discussing my work by various authors.
R. Barnett and N. Maxwell, eds., Wisdom in the University, Routledge, 2008, pbk. 2009.
Arguing for Wisdom in the University: An Intellectual Autobiography, Philosophia,
In Praise of Natural Philosophy: A Revolution for Thought and Life, Philosophia, vol. 40, no. 4, 2012
How Universities Can Help Humanity Learn How to Resolve the Crises of Our Times - From Knowledge to Wisdom: The University College London Experience, Handbook on the Knowledge Economy, vol. 2, ed. G. Heam, T. Katlelle and D. Rooney, Edward Elgar, Cheltenham, 2012, pp. 158-179.
Creating a Better World: Towards the University of Wisdom, in R. Barnett, ed., The Future University: Ideas and Possibilities, Routledge, New York, 2012, pp. 123-138.
A Priori Conjectural Knowledge in Physics: The Comprehensibility of the Universe, in What Place for the A Priori?, ed. M. Shaffer and M. Veber, Open Court, La Salle, 2011, Ch. 11, pp. 211-240.
Three Philosophical Problems about Consciousness and their Possible Resolution, Open Journal of Philosophy, vol. 1, no. 1, 2011, pages 1-10.
We Need an Academic Revolution, Oxford Magazine, No. 309, 2011, pp. 15-18.
Is the Quantum World Composed of Propensitons?, in Probabilities, Causes and Propensities in Physics, edited by Mauricio Suárez, Springer, Dordrecht, 2011, pp. 221-243.
Reply to Comments on Science and the Pursuit of Wisdom, Philosophia, Vol. 38, Issue 4, 2010, pp. 667-690; published online, 24 July 2010.
Wisdom-inquiry, The Philosophers’ Magazine, Issue 50, 2010, pp. 84-85, one of "the 50 best ideas of the 21st century".
The Urgent Need for an Academic Revolution, in History at the End of the World? History, Climate Change and the Possibility of Closure, ed.M. Levene, R. Johnson, R. Maguire, Humanities-Ebooks, Tirril, Penrith, 2010.
The Urgent Need for an Academic Revolution: From Knowledge to Wisdom, text of key note address given on 20 May 2010 at a Conference at Poznan University of Technology, Poland, in III International Interdisciplinary Technical Conference of Young Scientists: Proceedings, ed. W. Karpiuk and K. Wisniewski, Poznan, 2010, pp. 19-30.
The Urgent Need For An Academic Revolution: The Rational Pursuit Of Wisdom, in Death And Anti-Death, Volume 7: Nine Hundred Years After St. Anselm (1033-1109), ed. C. Tandy, Ria University Press, Palto Alto, California, 2010, ch. 7, pp. 211-238.
We Urgently Need an Academic Revolution, in How to Achieve a Heaven on Earth, ed. John E. Wade II, Pelican Publishing Co., 2010, pp. 269-71.
Universities: from knowledge to wisdom, Scientists for Global Responsibility Newsletter, Issue 38, 2010, pp. 18-20.
Review of Science, Policy, and the Value-Free Ideal by Heather Douglas, Metapsychology, 2010.
Scientists should stop deceiving us, The Guardian, 12 March, 2010, p. 35.
From Knowledge to Wisdom, in Ideas on the Nature of Science, ed.David Cayley, ed., Goose Lane Editions, New Brunswick, 2009, pp. 360-378 (text of broadcast on 18 June 2008).
Muller’s Critique of the Argument for Aim-Oriented Empiricism, Journal for General Philosophy of Science, vol. 40, 2009, pp. 103-114.
Are Universities Undergoing an Intellectual Revolution?, Oxford Magazine, No. 290,
The Metaphysics of Science: An Account of Modern Science in Terms of Principles, Laws and Theories (review of book by Craig Dilworth), International Studies in the Philosophy of Science, vol. 23, no. 2, July 2009, pp. 228-232.
Contribution to How to Think About Science, Ideas Transcripts, David Cayley, ed., Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, Toronto, 2008, pp. 212-220 (text of broadcast on 18 June 2008).
How Can Life of Value Best Flourish in the Real World?, in Science and the Pursuit of
Wisdom: Studies in the Philosophy of Nicholas Maxwell, edited by Leemon McHenry,
Replies and Reflections, in Science and the Pursuit of Wisdom: Studies in the Philosophy of Nicholas Maxwell, edited by Leemon McHenry, Ontos Verlag, 2009, pp. 249-313
Do We Need a Scientific Revolution?, Journal for Biological Physics and Chemistry, vol. 8, no. 3, September 2008, pp. 95-105.
Are Philosophers Responsible for Global Warming?, Philosophy Now, issue 65, January/February 2008, pp. 12-13.
The road to wisdom, New Statesman, vol. 137, no. 4880, 21 January 2008, p. 50.
The Disastrous War against Terrorism: Violence versus Enlightenment, chapter 3 of Terrorism Issues: Threat Assessment Consequences and Prevention, ed. Albert W. Merkidze, Nova Science Publishers, New York, 2007, pp. 111-133.
From Knowledge to Wisdom: The Need for an Academic Revolution, London Review of Education, vol. 5, no. 2, 2007, pp. 97-115 (reprinted in Wisdom in the University).
Wisdom in the university: editorial, with Ronald Barnett, London Review of Education, vol. 5, no. 2, 2007, pp. 95-6.
The Enlightenment, Popper and Einstein, in Knowledge and Wisdom: Advances in Multiple Criteria Decision Making and Human Systems Management, Y. Shi et al. (eds.), IOS Press, 2007, pp. 131-148.
Can the World Learn Wisdom?, Solidarity, Sustainability, and Non-Violence, vol. 3, no. 4, April 2007.
Knowledge to Wisdom: We Need a Revolution, Philosophia 34, 2006, pp. 377-378.
The Enlightenment Programme and Karl Popper, in Karl Popper: A Centenary Assessment. Volume 1: Life and Times, Values in a World of Facts, ed. I. Jarvie, K. Milford and D. Miller, chapter 11, Ashgate, London, 2006, pp. 177-190.
Practical Certainty and Cosmological Conjectures, in M. Rahnfeld, ed., Gibt es sicheres Wissen?, Leipziger Unversitätsverlag, Leipzig, 2006, pp. 44-59.
Learning to Live a Life of Value, in J. Merchey, ed., Living a Life of Value, Values of the Wise Press, 2006, pp. 383-95.
Special Relativity, Time, Probabilism and Ultimate Reality, in The Ontology of Spacetime, edited by D. Dieks, Elsevier, B. V., 2006, pp. 229-245.
A Revolution for Science and the Humanities: From Knowledge to Wisdom, Dialogue and Universalism, Vol. XV, No. 1-2, 2005, pp. 29-57.
Philosophy for Five-Year-Olds, Learning for Democracy, Vol. 1, No. 2, 2005, pp. 71-77.
Is Science Neurotic?, Philosophy Now, Issue 51, June/July, 2005, pp. 30-33.
Science under Attack, The Philosopher's Magazine, Issue 31, 3rd Quarter 2005, pp. 37-41.
Science versus Realization of Value, Not Determinism versus Choice, Journal of Consciousness Studies, vol. 12, no. 1, 2005, pp.53-58.
Does Probabilism Solve the Great Quantum Mystery?, Theoria, vol. 19/3, No. 51, 2004, pp. 321-336.
A Critique of Popper's Views on Scientific Method, in Popper: Critical Assessments of Leading Philosophers, Vol. II, Part 3, edited by Anthony O'Hear, Routledge, London, 2004, pp. 463-487 (reprint).
Do Philosophers Love Wisdom?, The Philosophers' Magazine, Spring 2003
Science, Knowledge, Wisdom and the Public Good, Scientists for Global Responsibility Newsletter 26, February 2003, pp. 7-9.
Art as Its Own Interpretation, in Interpretation and Its Objects: Studies in the Philosophy of Michael Krausz edited by Andreea Ruvoi, Rodopi., 2003, pp. 269-83
Two Great Problems of Learning, Teaching in Higher Education 8, January 2003, pp. 129-134
Is Science Neurotic?, Metaphilosophy 33, no. 3, April 2002, pp. 259-299.
The Need for a Revolution in the Philosophy of Science, Journal for General Philosophy of Science 33, 2002, pp. 1-28.
Karl Raimund Popper, in British Philosophers, 1800-2000, edited by P. Dematteis, P. Fosl and L. McHenry, Bruccoli Clark Layman, Columbia, 2002, pp. 176-194.
Three Philosophical Problems about Consciousness, Ethical Record 107, No. 4, May 2002, pp. 3-11
Science and meaning: why physics can coexist with consciousness, The Philosophers' Magazine 18, Spring 2002, pp. 15-16
Cutting God in Half, Philosophy Now 35, March/April 2002, pp. 22-25.
Can Humanity Learn to Create a Better World? The Crisis of Science without Wisdom, in The Moral Universe, edited by Tom Bentley and Daniel Stedman Jones, Demos Collection 16, 2001, pp. 149-156.
Wisdom and curiosity? I remember them well, The Times Higher Education Supplement, No. 1,488, 25 May 2001, p. 14.
Weinert's Review of 'The Comprehensibility of the Universe', Philosophy 76, 2001, pp. 297-303.
Can Humanity Learn to become Civilized? The Crisis of Science without Civilization, Journal of Applied Philosophy 17, 2000, pp. 29-44.
Are There Objective Values?, The Dalhousie Review 79, No. 3, (Autumn 1999), pp. 301-317.
Observation, meaning and theory, Times Higher Education Supplement, no. 1,427, 17 March, 2000, p. 30.
A new conception of science, Physics World 13, No. 8, 2000, pp.
The Mind-Body Problem and Explanatory Dualism, Philosophy 75, 2000, pp. 49-71.
Has Science Established that the Universe is Comprehensible?, Cogito 13, 1999, pp. 139-145.
Popper's Paradoxical Pursuit of Natural Philosophy in J. Shearmur & G. Stokes (eds.) Cambridge Companion to Popper, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.
1. The Best Short Summaries of From Knowledge to Wisdom:
Do Philosophers Love Wisdom?, Philosophers' Magazine, Spring 2003.
Can Humanity Learn to Become
Civilized? The Crisis of Science without Civilization, Journal
of Applied Philosophy, vol. 17, 2000, pp 29-44. This can be found
as "Target Article 28" of the Karl Jaspers Forum, edited by
Herbert F. J. Muller at McGill University. In addition to the article,
there are criticisms of it, By Lewis Wolpert, David Miller and others,
and my replies.
b. Simplicity, PhilSci Archive, 29 April 2001.
c. Scientific Metaphysics, PhilSci Archive, 21 March 2004.
d. Karl Raimund Popper, in British Philosophers, 1800-2000, edited by P. Dematteis, P. Fosl and L. McHenry, Bruccoli Clark Layman, Columbia, 2002, pp. 176-194..
e. Does Probabilism Solve the Great Quantum Mystery?, Theoria, vol. 19/3, No. 51, 2004, pp. 321-336..
Relativity, Time, Probabilism, and Ultimate Reality PhilSci Archive
10 May 2004.
g. Non-Empirical Requirements Scientific Theories Must Satisfy: Simplicity, Unification, Explanation, Beauty PhilSci Archive 22 May 2004.
h. Comprehensibility rather than Beauty PhilSci Archive 28 May 2004
i. In Defense of Seeking Wisdom PhilSci Archive, 3 August 2004
j. A Revolution for Science and the Humanities: From Knowledge to Wisdom, Dialogue and Universalism, Vol. XV, No. 1-2, 2005, pp. 29-57.
k. The Enlightenment, Popper and Einstein, PhilSci Archive 1 March 2005
l. A Mug's Game? Solving the Problem of Induction with Metaphysical Presuppositions, PhilSci Archive 12 March 2005
m. Three Philosophical Problems about Consciousness and Their Possible Resolution, PhilSci ARchive 21 March 2005.
n. Practical Certainty and Cosmological Conjectures, PhilSci Archive 14 April 2005.
o. Is Science Neurotic?, Metaphilosophy 33, no. 3, April 2002, pp. 259-299.
p. The Need for a Revolution in the Philosophy of Science, Journal for General Philosophy of Science 33, 2002, pp. 381-408.
q. Can Humanity Learn to Become Civilized? The Crisis of Science without Civilization, Journal of Applied Philosophy, vol. 17, 2000, pp 29-44.
Paradoxical Pursuit of Natural Philosophy, 28 March 2005, to be
published in in J. Shearmur & G. Stokes (eds.) Cambridge Companion
to Popper, Cambridge University Press.
3. Two of my articles are to be found at the philosophy site of rafe champion. Click "Guest Room" and that will take you to Do We Need an Academic Revolution? (summary of my argument), and Popper, Kuhn, Lakatos and Aim-Oriented Empiricism (in which I argue that my philosophy of science is an improvement over the views of Popper, Kuhn and Lakatos).
2. 15 Aug.: 'The Ideas, Words, and Influence of Albert Einstein'. Talk with Jason Merchey, Values and Ethics: From Living Room to Boardroom, World Talk Radio.
1. 11 March: Interview about From Knowledge to Wisdom, 2nd edition, on "Weekly Signals", broadcast on KUCI, a Californian Radio Station.
2. 18 June: How to Think About Science, Episode 24. An interview with David Cayley about my work on the Ideas Programme, broadcast by Canadian Broadcasting Corporation.
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