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Daniel Dennett – The Mind’s I (1981)

Still, the storytelling side of science is not just peripheral, and not just pedagogy, but the very point of it all. Science properly done is one of the humanities, as a fine physics teacher once said.

from the reflections on Hofstadter’s “A Conversation with Einstein’s Brain”

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Daniel Dennett – The Mind’s I (1981)

Science advances haltingly, bumping against the boundaries of the unthinkable: the things declared impossible because they are currently unimaginable.

from the reflections on Hofstadter’s “A Conversation with Einstein’s Brain”

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Daniel Dennett – The Mind’s I (1981)

The problems of transferring massive amounts of information between structurally different brains – such as yours and ours – are not insurmountable. The technology that already exists for accomplishing that task may, however, turn out in the end to be the most efficient possible. One of the most recent and advanced examples of that technology is in your hands at this instant.

from the reflections on an excerpt from Justin Leiber’s Beyond Rejection (1980)

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Daniel Dennett – “Thank Goodness!” (2006)

…For another, we now have quite solid grounds (e.g., the recently released Benson study at Harvard) for believing that intercessory prayer simply doesn’t work. Anybody whose practice shrugs off that research is subtly undermining respect for the very goodness I am thanking. If you insist on keeping the myth of the effectiveness of prayer alive, you owe the rest of us a justification in the face of the evidence.

(quoted in The Portable Atheist)