Show 601: Riane Eisler and Douglas Fry on Nurturing Our Humanity

For some time now, we have been having discussions with social and “natural” scientists about the state of our various societies – especially in the U.S. – in an attempt to better understand what we really are as a species, where we went wrong, and how we can find our way towards a healthier, more humanistic society.

What we’ve learned is that we are currently in a very unhealthy, even sociopathic time in human history. The multiple crises we face, of which Climate Change is one of the most urgent, may not have many viable solutions, but one thing for sure…our demise is not inevitable. This has been the message most of our guests have tried to get across – even the most pessimistic ones. Today’s guests are no different.

Audio can be found here!

Show 599: HSPs: Highly Sensitive Persons

HSPs: Highly Sensitive Persons w/ Dr. Elaine Aron and Diana Sinelnikova

Dr. Elaine Aron earned her M.A. from York University in Toronto in clinical psychology at Pacifica Graduate Institute in clinical depth psychology as well as interning at the C. G. Jung Institute in San Francisco. She is the author of ‘The Highly Sensitive Person‘ and related books including ‘The Highly Sensitive Person in Love’ and ‘The Highly Sensitive Child’.

Diana Sinelnikova is President & Creative Producer at the GlobalTouch Group in New York City, and has worked with several foundations rooted in science and education to promote their goal on a global scale. These include the Foundation for the Study of Highly Sensitive Persons, Pioneers in Education, and The National Museum of U.S. Army. She has produced two films based on Dr. Aron’s work including ‘Sensitive: The Untold Story‘, and the upcoming film, ‘Sensitive and In Love‘.

I’ll be speaking with both Elaine and Diana about their work, and what it means for those of us who are highly sensitive to live happy, peaceful, and healthy lives in the U.S.

Audio can be found here!

Show 405: The Science of Evil w/ Simon Baron-Cohen

The Science of Evil w/ Simon Baron-Cohen


History is full of cruelty- is there a person alive who hasn’t at some point been treated with gross insensitivity or even downright meanness by another?

Today, as a result of cutting edge neuroscience and social science, we know more about what causes people to act in hurtful ways than at any prior time in human history.   So, we are pleased to present the work of one of the world’s foremost authorities on the subject, Professor of Developmental Psychopathology in the departments of Psychology and Psychiatry at the University of Cambridge, Dr. Simon Baron Cohen.

Arguing that we explain nothing by describing acts of cruelty as “evil,” Dr. Cohen’s work demonstrates that cruelty can be traced to a distinct psychological state – a lack of empathy. Borderline personality disorder, narcissism, psychopathology, autism, and Asperger’s disorder: all of these syndromes result from a lack of empathy. Dr. Cohen backs up his claims with a wealth of research from developmental psychology, psychiatry, neuroscience and genetics.

Show’s 324 – On Empathy w/ Jeremy Rifkin

On Empathy; Two-Part Special!

Audio 1 here!

Audio 2 here!

Earlier this month, as some of us celebrated the founding of our country, we may have wondered how very different our society might have been had our founding fathers understood our empathetic nature. Instead, we live in a society…where we are all presumed to be self interested adversaries, who can be coerced into cooperating in exchange for financial rewards.

But today there is a new view of humanity and it’s being expressed by an ever widening range of writers, thinkers, and scientists. Rather than the traditional assumption that humans are primarily selfish and anti-social, this new view recognizes that our primary drive is social. A healthy human is inclined towards cooperating, and gets pleasure from taking care of others and making a positive social contribution.

Continue reading “Show’s 324 – On Empathy w/ Jeremy Rifkin”

Show 316: “Is There Anything More Important Than Whether or Not You Believe in a God?”

Call In Special: “Is There Anything More Important Than Whether or Not You Believe in a God?

Audio here!

The God debate may be interesting but when it comes to making our world a better place, is it really what matters the most?   Recently, a wide variety of professionals, including neuro-scientists, primatologists, social psychologists,  media journalists, and others have all been writing and talking about something far more central to achieving the progressive social change about which humanists should be concerned; empathy.

The concept of empathy speaks to those who are religious and non-religious alike.  It is the mechanism that results in our most humane and joyful experiences, just as the lack of it result in experiences which are the most debased and hurtful.  While seemingly uncontroversial, unthreatening, and innocuous, having a full appreciation of our natural inclination to empathize can open people to ideas that they might otherwise dismiss without adequate consideration.

During this installment of Equal Time for Freethought we’ll hear some sound clips of some of the principal players in the current “Empathy Zeitgeist” and take some of your calls to see if you agree that there are more important issues than atheism or faith, and that empathy may be the most important of all.