An End to Upside Down Thinking

Mark Grober is the author of the new book An End to Upside Down Thinking: Dispelling the Myth That the Brain Produces Consciousness, and the Implications for Everyday Life .  Mark is a partner in a Silicon Valley investment bank and strategy firm, has been drawn to life’s big questions starting from his years as a Princeton undergrad. Physics—particularly astrophysics —fascinated him, but he was too far into his economic major and other obligations to make the switch. As a compromise, instead of studying the invisible forces that govern the universe, he elected to study the invisible forces that govern human judgment and decision making—psychology/behavioral economics. But these big existence questions continued to plague him until he began the research which converted him from a “materialist” and ultimately propelled him to write the book.

Passing Judgment

Terri Apter is author of the new book, Passing Judgment: Praise and Blame in Everyday Life. Terri is a psychologist, and Fellow Emeritae at Newnham College, Cambridge. Her nine books include Difficult Mothers, The Sister Knot, The Confident Child, and What Do You Want from Me?: Learning to Get Along with In-laws. She lives in Cambridge, England.

The Effects of Inequality

Keith Payne is the author of the book The Broken Ladder: How Inequality Affects the Way We Think, Live, and Die. He is a professor of psychology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and an international leader in the psychology of inequality and discrimination. His research has been featured in The Atlantic and The New York Times, and on NPR, and he has written for Scientific American and Psychology Today.

Surviving your childhood as an adult

Ira Israel is the author of the book How to Survive Your Childhood Now That You’re An Adult: A Path to Authenticity and Awakening. He is a licensed marriage and family therapist and professional clinical counselor. Ira graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and holds advanced degrees in psychology, philosophy, and religious studies. His DVD series, including A Beginners Guide to Happiness and Mindfulness for Depression, along with his sold-out Esalen workshops, have given him a wide following.

Why Buddhism is True

Robert Wright is the author of the new book, Why Buddhism is True: The Science and Philosophy of Meditation and Enlightenment. Robert is the New York Times bestselling author of The Evolution of God (a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize), Nonzero, and The Moral Animal: Evolutionary Psychology and Everyday Life, Three Scientists and their Gods (a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award). He is the co-founder and editor-in-chief of the widely respected Bloggingheads.tv and has written for The New Yorker, The Atlantic, The New York Times, Time, Slate, and The New Republic. He has taught at the University of Pennsylvania and at Princeton University, where he also created the popular online course Buddhism and Modern Psychology.

Fear: The Enemy of Education

Ba Luvmour is one of the developers — along with his wife, Dr. Josette Luvmour — of “Natural Learning Relationships.” This is a whole-child understanding of childhood development that supports optimal well-being in children. Ba is a renowned specialist in child development, family relationships, and education. He has led hundreds of seminars and appeared at national and international conferences to share his vision on how children organize their world and how we can create relationships that bring forth optimal well being. Co-founder of Summa Institute and author of Optimal Parenting: Using Natural Learning Rhythms to Nurture the Whole Child, he has a Master Degree in psychology of education from UC Sonoma State. His Master’s thesis was on spiritual philosophy and education with an emphasis on practitioners (such as Montessori, etc.)

The Mind Club

Kurt Gray is the author of the new book, The Mind Club: Who thinks, what feels, and why it matters. Kurt Gray is a professor of social psychology at UNC Chapel Hill who received his PhD from Harvard University. He studies mind perception and morality, pondering such questions as “what is the nature of good and evil,” “can we ever truly know ourselves,” “why are humanoid robots so creepy,” and “what makes grandma’s cooking taste so good?”

The Brain’s Hidden Quest for “Cool”

Steven Quartz is the author of the new book, Cool: How the Brain’s Hidden Quest for Cool Drives Our Economy and Shapes Our World. By bringing together the latest findings in brain science, economics, and evolutionary biology to form a provocative theory of consumerism, Steven explains how the brain’s “social calculator” and an instinct to rebel are the crucial missing links in understanding the motivations behind our spending habits.

The Antidote

Our guest this week on Pathways is Oliver Burkeman, author of the new book The Antidote: Happiness for people who can’t stand positive thinking. Oliver is a feature writer for the Guardian. He writes a popular weekly column on psychology called “This Column Will Change Your Life.”

When the Past is Present

David Richo, Ph.D., M.F.T. is a psychotherapist, teacher, workshop leader, and writer who works in Santa Barbara and San Francisco California. He is the author of the new book, When the Past is Present. He combines Jungian, poetic, and mythic perspectives in his work with the intention of integrating the psychological and the spiritual. His books and workshops include attention to Buddhist practices.