An unabashed purveyor of nonsense keeps getting invited to international conference on science and philosophy
by Massimo Pigliucci
“Sheldrake’s book [A New Science of Life] is a splendid illustration of the widespread public misconception of what science is about. In reality, Sheldrake’s argument is in no sense a scientific argument but an exercise in pseudo-science.” (John Maddox, then editor of Nature magazine)
Next week I will once again take part in the “How the Light Gets In” festival, a gathering of philosophers, scientists, poets, and musicians, to celebrate human knowledge and understanding. The upcoming version will take place in Hay (Wales), but the event is also sometimes held in London.
I’m very much looking forward to give a talk on “How to be a skeptic,” and to participate as a panelist in two discussions, one on “Getting Everything, Losing Everything” (about Zuckerberg-style virtual reality) and the second on “The Good and the Evil” (on whether these moral categories make sense, or are useful).
Unfortunately, I’m not looking forward to another regular feature of the HTLGI events: running into pseudoscience purveyor Rupert Sheldrake, who keeps being invited year after year by the organizers for perverse reasons that are beyond my understanding. I’m sure he will take this essay as yet more evidence that there is a worldwide conspiracy of scientists against him, because Sheldrake is not just the source of wide-ranging nonsense, he is also paranoid. … (continue at Medium)