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What Is Real?

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Do we know what is actually real and what is not? Most of the ‘things’ we would say are real are actually made up of smaller components. So what are the bedrock things that constitute reality?

The following videos shed light on current conversations about the nature of reality focusing on four different points of view held by some of the world’s leading thinkers. Use the ideas covered in these videos as starting points for discussions, critical thinking and debates.

Questions to ask include:

  • How do we define if something exists or not?
  • What is a logical way to examine what ‘things’ are real and what things are not?
  • What makes a ‘thing’ real or not?

Please bookmark the video URL for quick reference when designing discussions or showing them to your class. 

Video URLs

Roger Penrose - http://www.closertotruth.com/series/what-things-really-exist#video-2810

Peter van Inwagen - http://www.closertotruth.com/series/what-things-really-exist#video-3190

George Lakoff - http://www.closertotruth.com/series/all-reality-consists-what-things#video-2570

Fred Alan Wolf - http://www.closertotruth.com/series/all-reality-consists-what-things#video-3920

Interviewees:

Roger Penrose, Mathematician, Oxford University: http://www.closertotruth.com/contributor/roger-penrose/profile

Peter van Inwagen, Philosopher, University of Notre Dame: http://www.closertotruth.com/contributor/peter-van-inwagen/profile

George Lakoff, Cognitive Linguist, University of California, Berkeley: http://www.closertotruth.com/contributor/george-lakoff/profile

Fred Alan Wolf, Theoretical Physicist, Former Professor San Diego State University: http://www.closertotruth.com/contributor/fred-wolf/profile

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