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Making Sense with Sam Harris
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Making Sense with Sam Harris

Author: Sam Harris

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Join neuroscientist, philosopher, and best-selling author Sam Harris as he explores important and controversial questions about the human mind, society, and current events.

Sam Harris is the author of five New York Times bestsellers. His books include The End of Faith, Letter to a Christian Nation, The Moral Landscape, Free Will, Lying, Waking Up, and Islam and the Future of Tolerance (with Maajid Nawaz). The End of Faith won the 2005 PEN Award for Nonfiction. His writing and public lectures cover a wide range of topics—neuroscience, moral philosophy, religion, meditation practice, human violence, rationality—but generally focus on how a growing understanding of ourselves and the world is changing our sense of how we should live.

Harris's work has been published in more than 20 languages and has been discussed in The New York Times, Time, Scientific American, Nature, Newsweek, Rolling Stone, and many other journals. He has written for The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Economist, The Times (London), The Boston Globe, The Atlantic, The Annals of Neurology, and elsewhere.

Sam Harris received a degree in philosophy from Stanford University and a Ph.D. in neuroscience from UCLA.
169 Episodes
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#161 — Rise & Fall

#161 — Rise & Fall

2019-06-2401:28:1525

In this episode of the Making Sense podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Jared Diamond about the rise and fall of civilizations. They discuss political polarization, disparities in civilizational progress, the prospect that there may be biological differences between populations, the precariousness of democracy in the US, the lack of a strong political center, immigration policy, and other topics. You can support the Making Sense podcast and receive subscriber-only content at samharris.org/subscribe.
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Michael Weiss and Yascha Mounk about the state of global politics. They discuss the rise of right-wing populism in Europe, the prospect that democracy could fail in the US, Trump’s political instincts, the political liability of “wokeness,” the Left’s failure to re-think its support of Chavez, the dangers of political polarization, the attractions of extreme partisanship, cancel culture, and other topics. You can support the Making Sense podcast and receive subscriber-only content at samharris.org/subscribe.
#159 — Conscious

#159 — Conscious

2019-06-0601:12:13103

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with his wife, Annaka Harris, about her new book, "Conscious: A Brief Guide to the Fundamental Mystery of the Mind." You can support the Making Sense Podcast and receive subscriber-only content at samharris.org/subscribe.
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Adam Grant about the social science of the workplace. They discuss how teams work effectively, the nature of power, personality types and fundamental styles of interaction, the critical skill of saying “no,” creativity, resilience, the strange case of Jonas Salk, the nature of mindfulness, the power of cognitive reappraisal, reflections on mortality, the replication crisis in social science, and other topics.  You can support the Making Sense Podcast and receive subscriber-only content at samharris.org/subscribe.
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Benjamin Wittes about both volumes of the Mueller Report. You can support the Making Sense Podcast and receive subscriber-only content at samharris.org/subscribe.
In the episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Nicholas Christakis about his new book, "Blueprint: The Evolutionary Origins of a Good Society." You can support the Making Sense Podcast and receive subscriber-only contentatsamharris.org/subscribe.
#155 — Mental Models

#155 — Mental Models

2019-04-2902:01:3629

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Shane Parrish about some of the mental models that should guide our thinking and behavior. You can support the Making Sense Podcast and receive subscriber-only content at samharris.org/subscribe.
In this episode of the Making Sense podcast, Sam Harris reads from an issue of Dabiq, the magazine of ISIS, and discusses the beliefs and goals of jihadists worldwide. You can support the Making Sense podcast and receive subscriber-only content at samharris.org/subscribe.
#153 — Possible Minds

#153 — Possible Minds

2019-04-1503:49:075

In this episode of the Making Sense podcast, Sam Harris introduces John Brockman's new anthology, "Possible Minds: 25 Ways of Looking at AI," in conversation with three of its authors: George Dyson, Alison Gopnik, and Stuart Russell. You can support the Making Sense podcast and receive subscriber-only content at samharris.org/subscribe.
In the episode of the Making Sense podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Roger McNamee about his book Zucked: Waking Up to the Facebook Catastrophe. You can support the Making Sense podcast and receive subscriber-only content at samharris.org/subscribe.
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Comments (947)

Nick Speetzen

I havent like trump from the jump. but i like the people who hate him, and lie or stretch truth, then do a whatabout or say to forget context, I like them way, way less. He isnt authoritarian, hes hardly more conservative or authoritarian than Bush. You just dont like his arrogance, which i can understand, but catastrophizing only makes it worse. Modern journalism, the far left, universities, prison reform, are all issues that will destroy us before a pompous man made of cheetos. Get over it - even minorities are taking little if any brunt because of flippin Trump. if they do, deal with it locally as it comes. Getting rid of trump wont do what you think or hope it will, and doing much more nuanced and difficult things will. as far as eastern Europe, I trust few people to report on that so its hard to say, but as long as elections are happening, i hope for the best.

Jun 26th
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Alex Mercedes

some interesting ideas in the longest podcast I have ever listened to. overall, I found Mounk's frequent inability to state a different opinion without calling it "higher" or "more importantly" or "central" annoying and a little Trump-ish. but there's definitely food for thought in this conversation. thanks to all three.

Jun 25th
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William Haywood

What is the name of the author mentioned regarding a book which was not published for reasons of cultural appropriation (or whatever the controversy)? I'm hearing Emily Wanzawa. Curious about finding a copy, as I find banned books tend to have interesting perspectives.

Jun 25th
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William Haywood

William Haywood Thank you!

Jun 25th
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Alex Mercedes

William Haywood Amélie Wen Zhao

Jun 25th
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Jon Wicke

I would urge listeners to not skip the intro, as Sam's baffled surveying of the cesspool that is Twitter is quite humorous.

Jun 25th
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Mike Smith

how someone as intelligent as Sam can continually confuse himself over the issue. The people that supported Trump weren't "Trumpists". We live in a binary society, and right now, the progressive left is more dangerous than a populist goober...

Jun 24th
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Mai So

I want his website . . please .

Jun 24th
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Tom MacDonald

unimpressed.

Jun 22nd
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William Younger

I call bullshit on Hungary and Poland being as authoritarian as these lot claim. if it was then our media in Europe would be tearing them to shreds. they are dying to destroy Orban.

Jun 21st
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C Dennison

after the previous administration weaponized the IRS to target political thought..put me in the wrecking ball camp Sam.

Jun 21st
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Nimrah Ahmed

It appears very clear that the lady doesn't even know her own mind.

Jun 20th
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Stuart Morgan

When Mexico sends its people, they're not sending their best. They're not sending you. They're not sending you. They're sending people that have lots of problems, and they're bringing those problems with us. They're bringing drugs. They're bringing crime. They're rapists. And some, I assume, are good people. But I speak to border guards and they tell us what we're getting. And it only makes common sense. It only makes common sense. They're sending us not the right people. It's coming from more than Mexico. It's coming from all over South and Latin America, and it's coming. Donald Trump, at Trump Tower (16 June 2015)

Jun 19th
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ForexTraderNYC

wow Sam, u have an amazing connection with ur wife. She is as amazing of a thinker as u..seeing u literally laugh out loud, 1st time makes me understand why compatibility n understanding is important in marriage relationship. it seems u r perfect for each other n can finish each others sentences..where do I find such an interesting n intelligent woman hmmmm?

Jun 19th
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James Brown

Wish I couldn't hear every time you trimmed the audio.

Jun 18th
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Matthew James

Trump called Mexicans rapists? Maybe a little fact checking is in order. not listening past that point

Jun 18th
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Tom MacDonald

Matthew James he did. he did not call Mexican rapists he called illegal immigrants some of them rapists you have to listen to the context or just read the quote that was just posted it's accurate.

Jun 22nd
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Alex Gage

Stuart Morgan This. Why do left people keep lying? It's really not helping.

Jun 20th
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Ishikawa30

This is a great example of how someone so smart gets and understands something so wrong.

Jun 18th
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Joshua Reich

Three wealthy white guys, telling you what people of color care about. smh

Jun 18th
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Matthew Nesbitt

Joshua Reich Agreed. I like a lot of what Sam has to say, but a good portion of this one sounded like an echo chamber where the guests claimed what they wanted without even considering the merits of the counterpoints (which of course were absent from the interview).

Jun 25th
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Tom MacDonald

Joshua Reich self-righteous and sanctimonious is what I heard

Jun 22nd
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Nelson Doris

Some interesting stuff, but I found this yascha guy to be too self important and diverting. He kept interrupting Sam to talk about whatever he wanted to talk about (and only about half of which was as important as he thought it was). For instance, I liked where Sam was going about not needing to speak in hyperbole to condemn the POTUS, and suddenly Yascha interrupted and changed the subject.

Jun 18th
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Alex Gage

William Miles La Mont He is the disdainful elitis that half the country voted against.

Jun 20th
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William Miles La Mont

Nelson Doris Have to agree. His conceit was showing.

Jun 19th
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Jared Enck

This episode is by far the biggest waste of your time. The circular hypocrisy is as evident as humanly possible by all of Sam's guests. Rich guys yammering about injustice with their hands vibrating under Sam's pants.

Jun 18th
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Alex Gage

Jon Wicke "You don't need to lie about Trump, he's awful as is." 30 seconds later. "Trump called all Mexicans rapists" which is a lie.

Jun 20th
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Matt A. Hirsch

Jon Wicke Probably one of the people who stupidly think Sam is racist.

Jun 18th
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saman mofid

This episode's subject and style was my favorite!

Jun 16th
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Sindhuja Rao

saman mofid good one

Jun 16th
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Prashanth Lavinna

for some reason both Sam and Adam aren’t comfortable with each other. When Sam brings up the meditation article written by Adam, he asks Sam, “is that what people thought about it?”. Sam doesn’t answer it and goes on with his talk. Even in the end when Adam asked, “isn’t that funny?” Sam doesn’t acknowledge the question. At a point Adam asks, “why are we talking about meditation so long?” Again, no answer from Sam. I don’t know why Sam wasn’t as sharp as he used to be in this interview. The overall interview was just okay. But I did enjoy Adam’s take meditation. I went and checked for the data after Adam’s claim and surprised that the evidence is too thin to promote meditation. Very few placebo controlled studies. I myself use waking up app for meditation. But evangelizing meditation without extensive research isn’t sensible. Anecdotal experience doesn’t validate the merit of meditation.

Jun 15th
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