Dreyfus - Dostoyevsky on how to Save the Sacred from Science


Additional Information

Category Lecture
Speakers Dreyfus, Hubert
Year 2015

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"In The Brothers Karamazov one of the monks tells Alyosha that "the science of this world has … analyzed everything divine handed down to us in the holy books. After this cruel analysis the learned of this world have nothing left of all that was sacred of old.” The Brothers Karamazov is Dostoyevsky's answer to the alleged loss of the sacred. There he quite explicitly interprets Christian practices such as baptism, confession, and even belief in miracles, so that they allow one to appreciate the sacred without having to deny the validity of modern science. He even makes clear in each case which specific sacred experience he is existentializing. As far as I know, no one has understood Dostoyevsky's profound accomplishment. I will present, discuss, and defend his view."

PROFESSOR HUBERT DREYFUS is an American philosopher and professor of philosophy at the University of California, Berkeley. His main interests include phenomenology, existentialism and the philosophy of psychology and literature, as well as the philosophical implications of artificial intelligence. Dreyfus is known for his exegesis of Martin Heidegger. He was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2001 and is a recipient of the Harbison Prize for Outstanding Teaching at UC Berkeley. Erasmus University awarded Dreyfus an honorary doctorate "for his brilliant and highly influential work in the field of artificial intelligence, and for his equally outstanding contributions to the analysis and interpretation of twentieth century continental philosophy".

The Humane Philosophy Project is an international initiative based at the Oxford and Warsaw Universities. Please visit www.humanephilosophy.com for further information.