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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.
212 Episodes
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#206 — May 26, 2020

#206 — May 26, 2020

2020-05-2644:369

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with David Frum about the shifting political landscape. They discuss the secularization of politics, distrust of the media and other institutions, voter suppression, the 2020 elections, what happens if Trump gets a second term, the role of money in politics, conspiracy theories around Covid-19, the Michael Flynn controversy, the prospect that Trump will refuse to leave office, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Daniel Markovits about the problems with meritocracy. They discuss the nature of inequality in the United States, the disappearance of the leisure class, the difference between labor and capital as sources of inequality, the way the education system amplifies inequality, the shrinking middle class, deaths of despair, differing social norms among the elite and the working class, the ethics of taxation, scales of philanthropy, universal basic income, the need for a wealth tax, the relationship between meritocracy and political polarization, the illusion of earned advantages, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe
#204 — May 18, 2020

#204 — May 18, 2020

2020-05-1801:05:4216

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Jonathan Haidt about the maintenance of a healthy society. They discuss the problem of orthodoxy, the history of political polarization in the US, the breakdown of public conversation, remaining uncertainty about Covid-19, motivated reasoning, the 2020 election, the future prospects for Gen Z, the effect of social media on the mental health of girls, Jonathan's experience with psychedelics, positive psychology, loss of self, the experience of awe, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe
#203 — May 13, 2020

#203 — May 13, 2020

2020-05-1301:07:353

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Caitlin Flanagan about her cancer recurrence and the response to her recent article in The Atlantic discussing it. They discuss the dynamics of apologies and forgiveness, the #MeToo movement and the allegations against Biden, modern feminism, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe
#202 — May 11, 2020

#202 — May 11, 2020

2020-05-1138:0213

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Andrew Yang about the Covid-19 pandemic. They discuss the future of the middle class, Andrew’s experience campaigning for President, the need to build new digital infrastructure, universal basic income (UBI), concerns about the Biden’s age and #MeToo allegation, hostility between the United States and China, problems with the global supply chain, concerns about social cohesion, market failures, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe
#201 — May 1, 2020

#201 — May 1, 2020

2020-05-0101:13:0044

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Yuval Noah Harari about the Covid-19 pandemic and its future implications. They discuss the failures of global leadership, the widespread distrust of institutions, the benefits of nationalism and its current unraveling in the U.S., politics as a way of reconciling competing desires, the consequences of misinformation, the enduring respect for science, the future of surveillance, the changing role of religion, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with James Clear about habit formation. They discuss the difference between creating good habits and discontinuing bad ones, the role of the environment, the misalignment between immediate and long term outcomes, the remembering self vs. the experiencing self, goals vs systems, the compounding of incremental gains, the role of attention, the four laws of behavior change, “temptation bundling,” and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe
#199 — April 23, 2020

#199 — April 23, 2020

2020-04-2438:2219

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris and Caitlin Flanagan discuss the ethics of abortion, the fact that universities with immense endowments are laying off staff during the Covid-19 pandemic, the Woody Allen autobiography, the moral hypocrisy of Hollywood, the lessons of "Tiger King," and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe
#198 — April 16, 2020

#198 — April 16, 2020

2020-04-1659:2030

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris and Paul Bloom discuss the false tradeoff between the economy and public health, putting a price on human life, framing effects for moral questions, how Covid-19 may change human behavior, "turn-key totalitarianism," the future of education, the long term psychological effects of the pandemic, the 2020 election, the prospect that Sanders supporters won't vote for Biden, and what Sam means when he says "the self is an illusion," and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe
#197 — April 12, 2020

#197 — April 12, 2020

2020-04-1230:3015

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Caitlin Flanagan. They discuss the different sorts of experiences people are having during the Covid-19 pandemic, what it has exposed about our education system, the 2020 election and the many problems with Joe Biden, why the press has been slow to cover Biden’s #MeToo allegation, the perceived double standards in the press and within feminism, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe.
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Laurie Santos about the scientific study of happiness. They discuss people’s expectations about happiness, the experiencing self vs the remembered self, framing effects, the importance of social connections, the effect of focusing on the happiness of others, introversion and extroversion, the influence of technology on social life, our relationship to time, the connection between happiness and ethics, hedonic adaptation, the power of mindfulness, resilience, the often illusory significance of reaching goals, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe.  
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with General Stanley McChrystal and Chris Fussell about the Covid-19 pandemic. They discuss the nature of the ongoing crisis, the threat of a breakdown in social order, the problem of misinformation, the prospects of a nationwide lockdown, the trade off between personal freedom and safety, the threat of tyranny, the concerns about the global supply chain, concerns about the price of oil, safeguarding the 2020 Presidential election, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe.
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Matt Mullenweg about the evolution of distributed work. They discuss the benefits of working from home, the new norms of knowledge work, relevant tools and security concerns, the challenges for managers, the importance of written communication, the necessity of innovating in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, delivery networks as critical infrastructure, economic recovery, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe.
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks about social contagion and about the importance of understanding one's own mind in an emergency. SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe.
#192 — March 17, 2020

#192 — March 17, 2020

2020-03-1737:2322

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris and Paul Bloom speak about the psychology of adapting to the coronavirus pandemic, the disastrous analogy between coronavirus and flu, the political siloing of information, true and false concerns over "panic," pressuring China to close down their live animal markets, the economic implications and possible silver linings of the pandemic, what our response suggests about our ability to deal with climate change, Biden vs Sanders, the ethics of praising one's enemies, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe.
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Amesh Adalja about the spreading coronavirus pandemic. They discuss the contagiousness of the virus and the severity of the resultant illness, the mortality rate and risk factors, vectors of transmission, how long coronavirus can live on surfaces, the importance of social distancing, possible anti-viral treatments, the timeline for a vaccine, the importance of pandemic preparedness, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe.
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Nicholas Christakis about the coronavirus pandemic. They discuss the likely effects on society, proactive vs reactive school closures, community transmission, false comparisons between coronavirus and flu, the imperative of social distancing, the timeline of the pandemic, Trump’s political messaging, the widespread distrust of expertise, the importance of "flattening the curve" of the epidemic, the possible failure of our healthcare system, gradations of personal response to this threat, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe.
#189 — Wealth & Happiness

#189 — Wealth & Happiness

2020-03-0201:10:0340

In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris speaks with Scott Galloway about the connection between wealth and happiness. They discuss the problem of wealth inequality, the transfer of wealth from the young to the old, class warfare in Democratic politics, deficit spending, means testing Social Security, Bloomberg’s campaign and “stop and frisk,” breaking up big tech, privacy absolutism, meditation, mortality, atheism, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe.
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris and Paul Bloom speak about the virtues of President Trump, the campaign prospects of Bloomberg and Sanders, the asymmetrical norms of the Democratic and Republican parties, the marginal role that parents play in the development of their children, wealth inequality and the breakdown of the nuclear family, whether Paul should take LSD, the deplatforming of Peter Singer, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe.
In this episode of the podcast, Sam Harris and Paul Bloom speak about the epidemic of child sexual abuse, the ethics of loyalty, eugenics, existential risk, the Bloomberg and Sanders campaigns, and other topics. SUBSCRIBE to continue listening and gain access to all content on samharris.org/subscribe.
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Comments (1494)

Janus Kannuberg

Another trump-bashing episode - it's getting boring

May 28th
Reply

Peter Cappello

Pretty darn good episode. Nice to hear from someone from the right that has the eyes to see the absolute idiocy of some of the current right wing trends.

May 27th
Reply

Jonathan Kolbinsky

Skip this one.. It's terrible.

May 27th
Reply (2)

L K

I like Yang but the way he laughs at nearly everything he says makes it hard to take him serious.

May 17th
Reply

Sean DAgnolo

the price of life is $7 an hour

Apr 24th
Reply

John BIBBS

hahaha he listens to cthagod haha I caught that

Apr 21st
Reply

ID7514813

I really don't understand how Sam doesn't see that the New York times and similar outlets do exactly what he says around 33 minutes in.... He said that he would have a problem if they spread false information knowingly or otherwise and instead of retracting it doubled down. That is exactly what they do against Trump all the time! When I started listening to Sam I was probably more anti-trump than he is, but as time went on it became clear that Trump's opponents clearly lie as much or more then he does. Then I finally understood the Trump phenomenon, he's a tool to be used against dishonest opponents. Yes it's a bit of a blunt tool, and undoubtedly some excess damage maybe done, but to ignore the fact that he arose as a response to similar (or worse) problems on the other side is to, I would argue, miss the point entirely.

Apr 8th
Reply

Jarrod Newell

Harris needs to stop harping on about Trump at every turn. We get you hate him. You are not telling us anything new or useful. These guests had so much to offer yet Sam dedicates the podcast to trying to get them to endorse his views of Trump.

Apr 7th
Reply (1)

Cameron White

man do I long for the days before Trump when politicians never lied to us

Apr 7th
Reply

Duke DeMatteo

why am I no longer getting the subscriber content in red anymore? why other podcast player hasnt dropped the episode yet either.

Apr 6th
Reply

Anderson da Silva (@AndyDaSilva52)

1:43:56 Book Search Inside of Yourself - https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16240760-search-inside-yourself

Apr 5th
Reply

Anderson da Silva (@AndyDaSilva52)

38:28 Physical Office

Apr 5th
Reply

Anderson da Silva (@AndyDaSilva52)

35:30 Are there challengers as a manager

Apr 5th
Reply

Anderson da Silva (@AndyDaSilva52)

15:55 app Krisp - https://krisp.ai - Noise Cancelling

Apr 5th
Reply

Anderson da Silva (@AndyDaSilva52)

The Five Levels of Remote/Distributed Work 10:57 - Level 1: Non-Deliberate Action 11:29 - Level 2: Recreating the Office, Online 13:32 - Level 3: Adapting to the Medium 17:28 - Level 4: Asynchronous communication 21:11 - Level 5: Nirvana Tks to @SteveGlaveski https://medium.com/swlh/the-five-levels-of-remote-work-and-why-youre-probably-at-level-2-ccaf05a25b9c

Apr 5th
Reply

Anderson da Silva (@AndyDaSilva52)

7:23 Book: Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us By David H. Pink - http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/6452796-drive

Apr 5th
Reply

Kutacrusader

This guy is full of shit to be honest. Not objective at all

Mar 24th
Reply

Tony Kearney

Sam in Panic Mode...

Mar 21st
Reply (1)

ambivalence

damn, this should have different name like "me and my guest are discussing that racism conflict".

Mar 20th
Reply

Shawn Stone

please, no more Paul Bloom. I've heard nothing intelligent come out of him since he joined these dialogues and actually "dumbs down" the show with his trite contributions.

Mar 19th
Reply (1)
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