Sunday, 1 January 2017

Making Sense of the World. Raymond Tallis conducts Inner Circle Seminar 237 (21 May 2017)

Raymond Tallis
Making Sense of the World

Raymond Tallis
Inner Circle Seminar No. 237
introduced by
Anthony Stadlen
Sunday 21 May 2017
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Raymond Tallis is one of our best-loved invited speakers. He writes:

The seminar will focus on the idea of a universe, and our lives within it, making sense. There are many dimensions to making sense. The comprehensibility celebrated by Einstein is the perceived order of the material world (including ourselves as material bodies). This order is can be expressed in equations of increasing generality enabling us to predict its behaviour with ever greater precision and vastly extending our power to act upon it in pursuit of our goals. Religion focusses on the place of human beings in the universe and the God who underpins both its order and the meaning and destiny of human life. Philosophy historically has endeavoured to span both world picture of whatever is current science and the meaning of our lives. The arts and therapy focus very much on the sense we make of our individual and shared lives (or nature seen through the lens of our needs and desires). The seminar will take the form of a series of short (10-15 minute) talks each followed by a discussion.

Raymond Tallis was a Professor of Geriatric Medicine and consultant physician in Health Care of the Elderly. He has published 200 research articles in the neurology of old age and neurological rehabilitation, as well as a novel, short stories, three volumes of poetry, and 23 books on philosophy of mind, philosophical anthropology, literary theory, the nature of art, and cultural criticism. He has received many awards and honorary degrees. In 2009, the Economist listed him as one of the world’s 20 leading polymaths.

Nicholas Fearn wrote in The Independent:

When Kirsty Young was asked to name her favourite guest on Desert Island Discs, the rock star Paul Weller was beaten into second place, for her own luxury item would be the writer Raymond Tallis.

Raymond Tallis has given three of our best loved and best remembered Inner Circle Seminars. He kindly confirms that our seminar structure, in which dialogue is of the essence, enables him to communicate and reflect on his ideas. He wrote, after his first Inner Circle Seminar, The Intellectual Plague of Biologism, on 2 December 2012:

The seminar was for me an incredible experience. I have never previously had the opportunity to discuss the topics we covered in such depth with a group of people who came at it from such different angles but in a way that I found illuminating. I learned a lot. It was a tremendous privilege.

Venue: Durrants Hotel, 26–32 George Street, Marylebone, London W1H 5BJ
Cost: Psychotherapy trainees £120, others £150, some bursaries; coffee, tea, biscuits, mineral water included; payable in advance; no refunds or transfers unless seminar cancelled
Apply to: Anthony Stadlen, ‘Oakleigh’, 2A Alexandra AvenueLondon N22 7XE
Tel: +44 (0) 20 8888 6857  +44 (0) 7809 433 250

For further information on seminars, visit:

The Inner Circle Seminars were founded by Anthony Stadlen in 1996 as an ethical, existential, phenomenological search for truth in psychotherapy. They have been kindly described by Thomas Szasz as ‘Institute for Advanced Studies in the Moral Foundations of Human Decency and Helpfulness’. But they are independent of all institutes, schools and universities.

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