Apr 4, 2020

AMA (Ask Me Anything) Session Coming Up Today

Each month I hold an online AMA - an Ask Me Anything - session for my viewers, listeners, readers, supporters, and other fans.  They're hosted on YouTube Live, and I record each session so that people who would like can go back through them.

I have one coming up a bit later on today, so if there's a question you've been wanting to ask me, pop in to the session and I'll hopefully have an answer for you.  You'll want to get your questions in early, since these sessions tend to draw a lot of viewers, and many of them ask questions.

Some people ask a lot of questions in these sessions.  I try to prioritize people who haven't yet had a question answered, rather than just answering multiple questions by the same person.  That seems fair to me.

Here's the link to the session. You can click on it and go right to the YouTube page.  There you can get a question into the queue ahead of time, and you can also set a reminder for when the session starts, if you'd like.

If you'd like to watch and listen to any of the earlier AMA sessions - you can also see what all the questions and comments were for that session by looking at the chat replay on the left side of the screen - here's a link to a playlist containing all of them.

The work involved in these free online events are underwritten by my Patreon supporters. Their pledges help me earn a living for myself and my family doing work I love - making philosophy accessible to people of all walks of life, all over the world.

If you'd like to become a supporter, here's where you can do that.

Apr 1, 2020

Sadler's Lectures Incorporated Into TrueSciPhi Radio


I'm very pleased to say that my Sadler's Lectures podcast has been incorporated today into an internet radio station that streams ideas-focused content 24 hours a day, called TrueSciPhi Radio.  They're starting with my episodes on Parmenides, Epictetus, and Descartes, which are airing as I write this.

It's good company to be in. Some of the other podcasts in the rotation include Philosophy Bites, The Big Idea, the Elucidations Podcast, Hi-Phi Nation, Happier Hour, History of Philosophy Without Any Gaps, Stoic Meditations, and a few others. 

If you'd like to listen to TrueSciPhi Radio, here's the link.

Mar 14, 2020

Seven Podcast Episodes on Friedrich Nietzsche's Truth and Lies in an Extra-Moral Sense

One of the authors that my listeners and subscribers have been asking for consistently to be included in my Sadler's Lectures podcast is Friedrich Nietzsche.  In fact, he is a consistent favorite when I create polls about who I ought to produce content on next. 

One of his short essays that I shot a series of core concept videos about several years back is his "Truth and Lies in an Extra-Moral Sense," in which Nietzsche argues, among other things that truth itself is something invented:
A mobile army of metaphors, metonyms, and anthropomorphisms—in short, a sum of human relations which have been enhanced, transposed, and embellished poetically and rhetorically, and which after long use seem firm, canonical, and obligatory to a people: truths are illusions about which one has forgotten that this is what they are; metaphors which are worn out and without sensuous power; coins which have lost their pictures and now matter only as metal, no longer as coins.

He says a good bit more about truth and its presumed opposite, falsehood or lying, as well as about the workings and functions of our intellects, and the inescapability of metaphor. 

These seven podcast lectures run to about an hour-and-a-half - so you can download and listen your way through all of them in a workout or commute or two.  Here they are:
I hope that you enjoy them and find them  thought-provoking!  

If you'd like to make a contribution to helping me continue my work making classic philosophical texts, thinkers, and topics accessible for people worldwide, consider becoming a monthly supporter on Patreon.  If you'd like to make a one-time donation, you can do so directly on Paypal, or on Buy Me A Coffee.

Mar 6, 2020

Wisdom For Life Radio Show - Questions and Suggestions

Our first episode of the Wisdom for Life radio show aired last Friday evening on Riverwest Radio - WXRW 104.1 FM - here in Milwaukee.  My co-host, Dan Hayes, and I go live every other Friday from 5 to 6 PM, discussing philosophy and its applications to challenges, problems, and issues of everyday life.

The first show went pretty well - not perfect, of course, but that's part of the fun of live radio!  We introduced the main idea of the show and ourselves as hosts, then shifted into discussing what philosophy as a way of life is and how it differs from the academic philosophy one might encounter in textbooks or classes.  We also introduced the idea of philosophical practices, and at the end of show introduced one drawn primarily from Stoicism - negative visualisation.  Between those two segments, we also looked at a real-life problem about how to make and maintain healthy boundaries.

If you missed the show and would like to give it a listen - or if you were one of the people who tuned in live worldwide, and would like to hear it again - here's two places you can do so:

I've no doubt that the show is going to evolve over time, but for now, we're planning on sticking to the format we've got so far

  • a bit of banter at the start
  • a half-hour of back and forth discussion of some key topics
  • roughly ten minutes of in-depth examination of a common problem
  • another ten minutes or so about a philosophical practice and how to use it
  • signing off
Dan and I are meeting today to go over the first episode and think about what else we might want to talk about or do on the show - and how to improve bits of it - so here's my two invitations to you:
  • If you've listened to the show, and have suggestions about what you'd like to see in upcoming episodes, go ahead and send them to me.
  • Whether you've listened to the show or not, if you've got a problem, challenge, or issue in your life, and you'd like to see what philosophy might contribute to dealing with it, send me that as well, and we might discuss it on the air
You can send suggestions or questions to me in Twitter, on my Facebook page, or by email.

Mar 5, 2020

Eight Podcast Episodes on The Introduction to Martin Heidegger's Being and Time

One of the most recent series in the Sadler's Lectures podcast - discussing the key ideas from the Martin Heidegger's Introduction to his early work, Being and Time - emerged out of polling my viewers, listeners, and other followers about which thinkers they'd like to hear next in the podcast.  Heidegger was definitely a favorite!

The eight podcast episodes linked to here take the listener through the key ideas and discussions of that introduction.  One of the more difficult aspects of Heidegger's writings for most readers and listeners is the terminology he introduces, uses, and plays around with - and my lectures focus on unpacking and explaining what Heidegger means.

All told, these eight episodes amount to about 2 hours and 20 minutes of downloadable lectures which you can listen to wherever you want and learn about Martin Heidegger's work.

Feb 26, 2020

Sadler's Honest Review - Piotr Stankiewicz, Does Happiness Write Blank Pages?

I recently added a new review to my Sadler's Honest Reviews series - this one focusing on Piotr Stankiewicz's work, Does Happiness Write Blank Pages?  On Stoicism and Artistic Creativity.

Put very simply, I highly recommend his book, both for its discussion of modern Stoicism and for its examination of artistic creativity.  Here's the video review, going into the details about why I recommend the book.


This review is the tenth in the series.  If you'd like to watch any of the others, and hear my in-depth discussions and evaluations of the books, here are the other nine.

Feb 23, 2020

Five Podcast Episodes On Anselm's Proslogion

One of the often underrated Medieval thinkers who I teach routinely in Introduction to Philosophy classes is Anselm of Canterbury.  He also happens to be the thinker upon whom I've published the most in the course of my academic career - and I point that out mainly to stress that he's definitely a thinker whose works are worth studying.  The work most students encounter him through is the Proslogion - or rather a short portion of it, chapter 2 (maybe supplemented by 3 and 4) - since Anselm provides a version of what later comes to be called the "ontological argument". 

It's a shame that most of the time, people don't read further on in the work, since it is quite fantastic (and even more so in the original Latin).  Even in his own time, there were critics - like the monk Gaunilo - who basically misunderstood what Anselm was up to in the work, and focused in solely on the argument about God's existence.  The Proslogion uses the same line of argument to lead the reader into consideration of the divine attributes, resolution of some seeming paradoxes, discussion of our capacities to even understand God, and in the end even some conjectures about what heaven would be like.

I recently produced five podcast episodes on the Proslogion, drawing upon the core concept videos I'd created for my students on the work. They don't cover the entirety of the ideas contained in the work, but do hit on some of the most important points and passages. (I'll likely shoot more videos on the work and convert those to podcasts this summer.)

All told, the five episodes come to a little over an hour of lectures you can download and listen to wherever you like.  Here they are: