and cognitive scientist whose research centers on the philosophy of mind
, philosophy of science
and philosophy of biology
, particularly as those fields relate to evolutionary biology and cognitive science
. He is currently the Co-director of the Center for Cognitive Studies, the Austin B. Fletcher Professor of Philosophy, and a University Professor at Tufts University
. Dennett is a firm atheist and secularist
, a member of the Secular Coalition for America
advisory board, as well as an outspoken supporter of the Brights movement
I think religion for many people is some sort of moral viagra.
Not a single one of the cells that compose you knows who you are, or cares.
Philosophers are never quite sure what they are talking about - about what the issues really are - and so often it takes them rather a long time to recognize that someone with a somewhat different approach (or destination, or starting point) is making a contribution. Little, Brown. ISBN 0-316-18065-3
The juvenile sea squirt wanders through the sea searching for a suitable rock or hunk of coral to cling to and make its home for life. For this task, it has a rudimentary nervous system. When it finds its spot and takes root, it doesn't need its brain anymore, so it eats it! (It's rather like getting tenure.) The analogy between the sea squirt and the associate professor was first pointed out, I think, by the neuroscientist Rodolfo Llinas.
Philosophers' Syndrome: mistaking a failure of the imagination for an insight into necessity.