THINK!
6August 2013, Budapest, Hungary
TamarGendler, Professor of Philosophy & Cognitive Science,Yale University
THINK!
6August 2013, Budapest, Hungary
TamarGendler, Professor of Philosophy & Cognitive Science,Yale University
Socrates
Ancient Greece
470-399 BCE
Plato
Ancient Greece
437-347 BCE
Aristotle
Ancient Greece
384-322 BCE
Cicero
Ancient R...
Plato’s Academy. Mosaic floor from Pompeii, 1st century CE
“Roman School,” Marble Relief from a Roman Sarcophagus
Laurentius deVoltolina, "Henricus de Alemania Lecturing his Students" (c. 1350)
From Liber ethicorum des Henricus de Alema...
Yale University Dining Hall, c. 1948
Yale Students, c. 1978
Yale Students, c. 1988
 The human soul exhibits internal complexity
 It includes both reflective and non-reflective parts
 Flourishing occurs ...
 The human soul exhibits internal complexity
 It includes both reflective and non-reflective parts
 Flourishing occurs ...
 The human soul exhibits internal complexity
 It includes both reflective and non-reflective parts
 Flourishing occurs ...
• Develop appropriate self-knowledge [Socrates]
• Cultivate internal harmony [Plato]
• Foster virtue through habit [Aristo...
Jacques-Louis David, “The Death of Socrates” (1787)
Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC
Temple of Apollo, c. 4th century BCE
Delphi, Greece (cf. Plato, Apology)
Chaerephon to Oracle: “Who is the wisest of men?”...
When I heard this, I said to myself: “What can
the oracle mean when it says that no one is
wiser than I am?…For I know tha...
“…So I went to one who had the reputation of
wisdom, and when I began to talk with him, I
could not help thinking that he ...
“…So I left him, saying to myself, as I went
away: ‘Well, although I do not suppose that
either of us knows anything reall...
“…So I left him, saying to myself, as I went
away: ‘Well, although I do not suppose that
either of us knows anything reall...
 One source of wisdom: knowing what one
does not know
 This includes our motivations and the sources
of (many of) our at...
(Dutton and Aron, 1974)
Bargh &Williams, 2008; Bertrand & Mullainathan, 2004)
 “I am better off than he is - for he knows nothing,
and thinks that he knows. I neither know nor think
that I know” (Soc...
Raphael, “The School of Athens” (1510-11)
Stanza della Segnatura, Vatican City
“ Leontius was walking along the North Wall when he
saw some corpses lying at the executioner's feet. He
had an appetite t...
“ Leontius was walking along the North Wall when he
saw some corpses lying at the executioner's feet. He
had an appetite t...
Let us, then, liken the soul to the natural union of a
team of winged horses and their charioteer...One of
the horses is a...
 Three parts: Reason, Spirit, Appetite
 Conflict among parts often leads to
conflicted responses
 Our direct conscious ...
Belief: Safe
Alief: Yikes!
Belief: Movie
Alief: Watch out!
Belief: 10:00Belief: Undesirable
Alief: 10:05 -- hurry!Alief: Y...
I hereby declare that my soul
belongs only to you, O Satan.
Signed,
____________________________
6 August 2013
Budapest, H...
(Monica Bonvicini (2003), “Don’t Miss a Sec”)
(Evans (2008), 257)
(Dennis Proffitt, various)
 Verbal/perceptual reports show illusion
effects
 Grasping/walking behaviors do not
 Verbal ...
Baumeister, Bratslasky, Muraven, &Tice, (1998)
BlueYellow Green RedYellow Blue GreenYellow Red Blue
Sárga Kék Piros Sárga Kék Zöld Piros Sárga Piros Kék Zöld
(Richeson e...
 The soul is like “the…union of a team of
winged horses and their charioteer...”
 Reactions come from different “parts” ...
Raphael, “The School of Athens” (1510-11)
Stanza della Segnatura,Vatican City
 “People become builders by building and harp-players by
playing the harp
 So too we become just by doing just acts, tem...
GRAVITY
It’s not just a
good idea…
It’s the LAW!
 Normative/prescriptive laws (“oughts”)
 Look both ways
 Do not eat in the library
 Speed limit: 100 km/hour
 Descrip...
 Normative/prescriptive laws (“oughts”)
 Look both ways [You should look…]
 Do not eat in the library [You should not e...
 Normative/prescriptive laws (“oughts”)
 Look both ways [You should look…]
 Do not eat in the library [You should not e...
 Patterns of behavior initially under conscious
control become automatized
 Habits are tools for turning normative
commi...
 “Abstaining from pleasures makes us become
temperate, and once we have become
temperate we are most capable of abstainin...
 “Abstaining from pleasures makes us become
temperate, and once we have become
temperate we are most capable of abstainin...
 Habits are tools for turning “oughts” into “is-es”
 “We learn a craft by producing the same product that we
must produc...
“Cicero Denounces Cataline” Cesare Maccari, 1882-1888
Fresco, Palazzo Madama, Sala Maccari, Rome
“How can life be worth living…without the mutual
good will of a friend?...Is not prosperity robbed of half
its value if yo...
“If you want to predict how happy someone is, or
how long she will live … you should find out about
her social relationshi...
When a wild elephant is to be tamed and trained, the best way
to begin is by yoking it to one that has already been throug...
 “Friendship doubles our joy and...divides ...our
grief.” (Cicero)
 Positive social contact magnifies emotional pleasure...
“Some things up to us and some things are not up to us.
Our opinions are up to us and our impulses, desires,
aversions – i...
If you suppose that things not up to you are up to
you … you will lament, you will be disturbed, and
you will find fault b...
 “Some things up to us and some things are not
up to us.” (Epictetus)
 We cannot directly control many things in the
wor...
Admiral James B. Stockdale
1923-2005
-- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's
Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)
 “On S...
-- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's
Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)
 “On S...
-- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's
Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)
 “On S...
-- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's
Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)
 “On S...
-- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's
Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)
 “In m...
-- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's
Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)
 “In m...
-- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's
Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)
 “In m...
Socrates
Ancient Greece
470-399 BCE
Plato
Ancient Greece
437-347 BCE
Aristotle
Ancient Greece
384-322 BCE
Cicero
Ancient R...
Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!
Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!
Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!
Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!
Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!
Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!
Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!
Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!
Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!
Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!
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Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!

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What are the secrets to authentic happiness? What sorts of activities and experiences contribute to human flourishing? Tying together cutting-edge work in contemporary psychology and neuroscience with the profound writings of ancient philosophers, Professor Gendler will focus on the insights of five major Greek and Roman thinkers: Socrates on self-knowledge, Plato on self-harmony, Aristotle on habit, Epictetus on self-reliance, and Cicero on friendship.

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  • Neshama, Ruach,NefeshId, Ego, Superego
  • Some things are up to us and some are not up to us. Our opinions are up to us, and our impulses, desires, aversions – in short, whatever is our own doing. Our bodies are not up to us, nor are our possessions, our reputations, or our public offices, or, that is, whatever is not our own doing...If you think that only what is yours is yours, and that what is not your own is, just as it is, not your own, then no one will ever coerce you, no one will hinder you, you will blame no one, you will not accuse anyone, you will do not a single thing unwillingly, you will have no enemies, and no one will harm you, because you will not be harmed at all.”
  • Some things are up to us and some are not up to us. Our opinions are up to us, and our impulses, desires, aversions – in short, whatever is our own doing. Our bodies are not up to us, nor are our possessions, our reputations, or our public offices, or, that is, whatever is not our own doing...If you think that only what is yours is yours, and that what is not your own is, just as it is, not your own, then no one will ever coerce you, no one will hinder you, you will blame no one, you will not accuse anyone, you will do not a single thing unwillingly, you will have no enemies, and no one will harm you, because you will not be harmed at all.”
  • Five Ancient Secrets to Modern Happiness - Tamar Gendler @ espell THINK!

    1. 1. THINK! 6August 2013, Budapest, Hungary TamarGendler, Professor of Philosophy & Cognitive Science,Yale University
    2. 2. THINK! 6August 2013, Budapest, Hungary TamarGendler, Professor of Philosophy & Cognitive Science,Yale University
    3. 3. Socrates Ancient Greece 470-399 BCE Plato Ancient Greece 437-347 BCE Aristotle Ancient Greece 384-322 BCE Cicero Ancient Rome 106-46 BCE Epictetus Ancient Rome c. 55-135 CE
    4. 4. Plato’s Academy. Mosaic floor from Pompeii, 1st century CE
    5. 5. “Roman School,” Marble Relief from a Roman Sarcophagus
    6. 6. Laurentius deVoltolina, "Henricus de Alemania Lecturing his Students" (c. 1350) From Liber ethicorum des Henricus de Alemania
    7. 7. Yale University Dining Hall, c. 1948
    8. 8. Yale Students, c. 1978
    9. 9. Yale Students, c. 1988
    10. 10.  The human soul exhibits internal complexity  It includes both reflective and non-reflective parts  Flourishing occurs when these parts interact appropriately  This requires a proper understanding – both reflective and non-reflective – of their roles and relations
    11. 11.  The human soul exhibits internal complexity  It includes both reflective and non-reflective parts  Flourishing occurs when these parts interact appropriately  This requires a proper understanding – both reflective and non-reflective – of their roles and relations Spiritual well-being Eudaimonea
    12. 12.  The human soul exhibits internal complexity  It includes both reflective and non-reflective parts  Flourishing occurs when these parts interact appropriately  This requires a proper understanding – both reflective and non-reflective – of their roles and relations Spiritual well-being Eudaimonea Practical Wisdom Phronesis
    13. 13. • Develop appropriate self-knowledge [Socrates] • Cultivate internal harmony [Plato] • Foster virtue through habit [Aristotle] • Pursue and appreciate true friendship [Cicero] • Recognize what is and is not within your control [Epictetus]
    14. 14. Jacques-Louis David, “The Death of Socrates” (1787) Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC
    15. 15. Temple of Apollo, c. 4th century BCE Delphi, Greece (cf. Plato, Apology) Chaerephon to Oracle: “Who is the wisest of men?” Oracle to Chaerephon: “No one is wiser than Socrates.”
    16. 16. When I heard this, I said to myself: “What can the oracle mean when it says that no one is wiser than I am?…For I know that I have no wisdom, small or great…” Plato, The Apology (Ancient Greek, c. 400 BCE)
    17. 17. “…So I went to one who had the reputation of wisdom, and when I began to talk with him, I could not help thinking that he was not really wise, although he was thought wise by many, and wiser still by himself...” Plato, The Apology (Ancient Greek, c. 400 BCE)
    18. 18. “…So I left him, saying to myself, as I went away: ‘Well, although I do not suppose that either of us knows anything really beautiful and good, I am better off than he is - for he knows nothing, and thinks that he knows. I neither know nor think that I know.’” Plato, The Apology (Ancient Greek, c. 400 BCE)
    19. 19. “…So I left him, saying to myself, as I went away: ‘Well, although I do not suppose that either of us knows anything really beautiful and good, I am better off than he is - for he knows nothing, and thinks that he knows. I neither know nor think that I know.’” Plato, The Apology (Ancient Greek, c. 400 BCE)
    20. 20.  One source of wisdom: knowing what one does not know  This includes our motivations and the sources of (many of) our attitudes  Self-knowledge requires humility: knowing that one does not fully know oneself
    21. 21. (Dutton and Aron, 1974)
    22. 22. Bargh &Williams, 2008; Bertrand & Mullainathan, 2004)
    23. 23.  “I am better off than he is - for he knows nothing, and thinks that he knows. I neither know nor think that I know” (Socrates)  In many cases, we are unaware of the sources of our emotions, our choices, our preferences, and our pursuit of goals  Self-knowledge includes knowledge of our own ignorance
    24. 24. Raphael, “The School of Athens” (1510-11) Stanza della Segnatura, Vatican City
    25. 25. “ Leontius was walking along the North Wall when he saw some corpses lying at the executioner's feet. He had an appetite to look at them, but at the same time he was disgusted and turned away. For a time he struggled with himself and covered his face, but finally, overpowered by the appetite, he pushed his eyes wide open and rushed towards the corpses saying, ‘Look for yourselves, you evil wretches, take your fill of the beautiful sight!’” Plato, Republic 439e-440a
    26. 26. “ Leontius was walking along the North Wall when he saw some corpses lying at the executioner's feet. He had an appetite to look at them, but at the same time he was disgusted and turned away. For a time he struggled with himself and covered his face, but finally, overpowered by the appetite, he pushed his eyes wide open and rushed towards the corpses saying, ‘Look for yourselves, you evil wretches, take your fill of the beautiful sight!’” Plato, Republic 439e-440a
    27. 27. Let us, then, liken the soul to the natural union of a team of winged horses and their charioteer...One of the horses is a lover of honor and is guided by verbal commands alone; the other is companion to wild boasts and indecency, and barely yields to the goad. -- Plato, Phaedrus, 246b, 253d
    28. 28.  Three parts: Reason, Spirit, Appetite  Conflict among parts often leads to conflicted responses  Our direct conscious access to the motivations of the “horses” (and even the “charioteer”) is limited
    29. 29. Belief: Safe Alief: Yikes! Belief: Movie Alief: Watch out! Belief: 10:00Belief: Undesirable Alief: 10:05 -- hurry!Alief: Yummy -- caaake! Belief: RerunBelief: Edible Alief: Don’t run!!Alief:Yuccck!!
    30. 30. I hereby declare that my soul belongs only to you, O Satan. Signed, ____________________________ 6 August 2013 Budapest, Hungary This is not a legal contract. It is simply a prop in a psychology experiment.
    31. 31. (Monica Bonvicini (2003), “Don’t Miss a Sec”)
    32. 32. (Evans (2008), 257)
    33. 33. (Dennis Proffitt, various)  Verbal/perceptual reports show illusion effects  Grasping/walking behaviors do not  Verbal report estimates 5 degrees as 20 degrees  Haptic report is accurate
    34. 34. Baumeister, Bratslasky, Muraven, &Tice, (1998)
    35. 35. BlueYellow Green RedYellow Blue GreenYellow Red Blue Sárga Kék Piros Sárga Kék Zöld Piros Sárga Piros Kék Zöld (Richeson et al (2003))
    36. 36.  The soul is like “the…union of a team of winged horses and their charioteer...”  Reactions come from different “parts” of the soul/brain  Sometimes these reactions are in harmony; sometimes they are in tension  When they’re in unwanted tension, it takes effort and energy to control behavior
    37. 37. Raphael, “The School of Athens” (1510-11) Stanza della Segnatura,Vatican City
    38. 38.  “People become builders by building and harp-players by playing the harp  So too we become just by doing just acts, temperate by doing temperate acts, brave by doing brave acts  States of character arise out of like activities  It makes no small difference, then, whether we form habits of one kind or of another from our very youth; it makes a very great difference, or rather all the difference.” -- Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, 1103
    39. 39. GRAVITY It’s not just a good idea… It’s the LAW!
    40. 40.  Normative/prescriptive laws (“oughts”)  Look both ways  Do not eat in the library  Speed limit: 100 km/hour  Descriptive laws (“is-es”)  If a car hits you, you will die  Crumbs cause book-decay  Speed limit: 186k miles/second
    41. 41.  Normative/prescriptive laws (“oughts”)  Look both ways [You should look…]  Do not eat in the library [You should not eat…]  Speed limit: 100 km/hour [You should go <…]  Descriptive laws (“is-es”)  If a car hits you, you will die  Crumbs cause book-decay  Speed limit: 186k miles/second
    42. 42.  Normative/prescriptive laws (“oughts”)  Look both ways [You should look…]  Do not eat in the library [You should not eat…]  Speed limit: 100 km/hour [You should go <…]  Descriptive laws (“is-es”)  If a car hits you, you will die [It’s a fact that if…]  Crumbs cause book-decay [It’s a fact that crumbs…]  Speed limit: 186k miles/second [It’s a fact that you go <…]
    43. 43.  Patterns of behavior initially under conscious control become automatized  Habits are tools for turning normative commitments (“oughts”) into descriptive laws (“is-es”)  Before I cross the street, I habitually look both ways  When you hands me an item, I habitually say “thank you”  [When I turn on my computer, I habitually check facebook / watchYouTube / play Angry Birds / visit index.hu]
    44. 44.  “Abstaining from pleasures makes us become temperate, and once we have become temperate we are most capable of abstaining from pleasures.
    45. 45.  “Abstaining from pleasures makes us become temperate, and once we have become temperate we are most capable of abstaining from pleasures. It is similar with bravery: habituation in…standing firm in frightening situations makes us become brave, and once we have become brave, we are more capable of standing firm” (1104)
    46. 46.  Habits are tools for turning “oughts” into “is-es”  “We learn a craft by producing the same product that we must produce when we have learned it: we become builders by building, harpists by playing the harp.” (1103b)  In the same way, “we become just by doing just actions, temperate by doing temperate actions, brave by doing brave actions.” (1103b)  If you want to become something, act as if that’s what you already were
    47. 47. “Cicero Denounces Cataline” Cesare Maccari, 1882-1888 Fresco, Palazzo Madama, Sala Maccari, Rome
    48. 48. “How can life be worth living…without the mutual good will of a friend?...Is not prosperity robbed of half its value if you have no one to share your joy? Friendship improves happiness and abates misery, by the doubling of our joy and the dividing of our grief In the face of a true friend a man sees as it were a second self.” -- Cicero, On Friendship
    49. 49. “If you want to predict how happy someone is, or how long she will live … you should find out about her social relationships. Having strong social relationships strengthens the immune system, extends life (more than does quitting smoking), speeds recovery from surgery, and reduces the risk of depression and anxiety disorders.” -- Jonathan Haidt (Yale 1985),The Happiness Hypothesis (2005), 133
    50. 50. When a wild elephant is to be tamed and trained, the best way to begin is by yoking it to one that has already been through the process. By contact, the wild one comes to see that the condition it is being led to is not wholly incompatible with being an elephant – that what is expected of it heralds a condition that does not contradict its nature. The constant, immediate and contagious example of its yoke fellow can teach it as nothing else can. Training for the life of the spirit is no different… -- Smith & Novak, Buddhism: A Concise Introduction
    51. 51.  “Friendship doubles our joy and...divides ...our grief.” (Cicero)  Positive social contact magnifies emotional pleasure and tempers emotional pain  “In the face of a true friend a man sees as it were a second self.” (Cicero)  In the presence of others, we can develop new patterns of perception and response
    52. 52. “Some things up to us and some things are not up to us. Our opinions are up to us and our impulses, desires, aversions – in short, whatever is our own doing. Our bodies are not up to us, nor are our possessions, or our public reputations…
    53. 53. If you suppose that things not up to you are up to you … you will lament, you will be disturbed, and you will find fault both with gods and men. But if you think that only what is yours is yours, and that what is not your own is not your own, then no one will ever coerce you, no one will hinder you, you will blame no one, you will accuse no one, and you will do not a single thing unwillingly…”
    54. 54.  “Some things up to us and some things are not up to us.” (Epictetus)  We cannot directly control many things in the world; we can directly (and indirectly) control many things in ourselves  To do so effectively requires… self-knowledge
    55. 55. Admiral James B. Stockdale 1923-2005
    56. 56. -- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)  “On September 9, 1965, I flew at 500 knots right into a flak trap, at tree-top level, in a little A-4 airplane which I couldn’t steer after it was on fire, its control system shot out.
    57. 57. -- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)  “On September 9, 1965, I flew at 500 knots right into a flak trap, at tree-top level, in a little A-4 airplane which I couldn’t steer after it was on fire, its control system shot out. After ejection I had about thirty seconds to make my last statement in freedom before I landed in the main street of the little village ahead.
    58. 58. -- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)  “On September 9, 1965, I flew at 500 knots right into a flak trap, at tree-top level, in a little A-4 airplane which I couldn’t steer after it was on fire, its control system shot out. After ejection I had about thirty seconds to make my last statement in freedom before I landed in the main street of the little village ahead. And so help me, I whispered to myself: ‘Five years down there, at least. I’m leaving the world of technology and entering the world of Epictetus.’”
    59. 59. -- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)  “On September 9, 1965, I flew at 500 knots right into a flak trap, at tree-top level, in a little A-4 airplane which I couldn’t steer after it was on fire, its control system shot out. After ejection I had about thirty seconds to make my last statement in freedom before I landed in the main street of the little village ahead. And so help me, I whispered to myself: ‘Five years down there, at least. I’m leaving the world of technology and entering the world of Epictetus.’”
    60. 60. -- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)  “In my thoughts as I ejected from that airplane was the understanding that I would keep separate files in my mind for (A) those things that are ‘up to me’ and (B) those things that are ‘not up to me.’
    61. 61. -- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)  “In my thoughts as I ejected from that airplane was the understanding that I would keep separate files in my mind for (A) those things that are ‘up to me’ and (B) those things that are ‘not up to me.’ … All in category B are ‘external’, beyond my control, ultimately dooming me to fear and anxiety if I covet them. All in categoryA are up to me and properly subjects for my concern and involvement.
    62. 62. -- James B. Stockdale, “Courage under Fire:Testing Epictetus's Doctrines in a Laboratory of Human Behavior” (1993)  “In my thoughts as I ejected from that airplane was the understanding that I would keep separate files in my mind for (A) those things that are ‘up to me’ and (B) those things that are ‘not up to me.’ … All in category B are ‘external’, beyond my control, ultimately dooming me to fear and anxiety if I covet them. All in categoryA are up to me and properly subjects for my concern and involvement. They include my opinions, my aims, my aversions, my own grief, my own joy, my judgments, my attitudes about what is going on.”
    63. 63. Socrates Ancient Greece 470-399 BCE Plato Ancient Greece 437-347 BCE Aristotle Ancient Greece 384-322 BCE Cicero Ancient Rome 106-46 BCE Epictetus Ancient Rome c. 55-135 CE

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