Kolak's numerous articles, stories, essays, books and other creative works bridge traditional philosophy with all areas of inquiry and expression, from neuroscience to quantum mechanics, from logic and mathematics to art, music and literature. Among his best known recent works are I Am You: The Metaphysical Foundations for Global Ethics
Prof. Dr. Daniel Kolak
Born in 1955 in Zagreb, Croatia, Daniel Kolak is one of the most prolific philosophers in the world, with over thirty-five authored books and nearly two hundred books edited. He is professor of philosophy at the William Paterson University of New Jersey (WPUNJ), where he chaired the Philosophy Department and founded and directed the WPUNJ cognitive science laboratory. He also directs research at the Brain Behavior Center and is an affiliate of Rutgers University Center for Cognitive Science (RuCCS). Kolak's numerous articles, stories, essays, books and other creative works bridge traditional philosophy with all areas of inquiry and expression, from neuroscience to quantum mechanics, from logic and mathematics to art, music and literature. Among his best known recent works are I Am You: The Metaphysical Foundations for Global Ethics (Springer, 2004), Principles of Cognitive Science (Routledge 2006), Wittgenstein's Tractatus (McGraw Hill 1998), Wisdom Without Answers (Wadsworth 1998), From the Presocratics to the Present (McGraw Hill 1998), In Search of God: The Language and Logic of Belief (McGraw Hill 1994), The Experience of Philosophy (Oxford University Press, 2005), Self, Cosmos, God (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich 1993), Self and Identity (Macmillan), and the novel In Search of Myself: Life, Death and Personal Identity (Wadsworth 1999). He is editor, chief programmer and designer of the interactive electronic library The Philosophy Source on CD-Rom, and was Series Editor of the Wadsworth Philosopher Series and Philosophical Topics. As Series Editor at Longman, the world's oldest commercial publisher, he is currently bringing out new editions of the complete canon of philosophy from ancient times to the present. Translated into over a dozen languages, collectively his books have sold over a million copies worldwide.
In 2004 Kolak was elected as the Croatian member to the prestigious International Institute of Philosophy (IIP) in Paris, a consortium of some of the world's greatest living philosophers. As the current président du comité d'organisation, he is organizing the IIP 2007 annual meeting to Zadar, Croatia, where leading philosophers from virtually every country in the world will discuss "Identity: Political, Socio-Economic, Religious and Personal." This historic meeting will take place from August 29 to September 3, 2007, at the University of Zadar. Plans are currently in the works for bringing a select group of IIP philosophers to the Mediterranean Institute for Life Sciences (MEDILS) in Split for a special symposium a few days before the Zadar meeting.
600 years old University. Zadar Croatia
Kolak is the originator of the philosophy known as Open Individualism, which he developed along with his view of metaphysical subjectivism and the nonlocality of consciousness, according to which there exists but one numerically identical individual subject who is everyone. In his groundbreaking I Am You: the Metaphysical Foundations for Global Ethics (Springer 2004), he writes: "The central thesis of I Am You - that we are all the same person - is apt to strike many readers as obviously false or even absurd. How could you be me and Hitler and Gandhi and Jesus and Buddha and Greata Garbo and everybody else in the past, present and future? In this book I explain how this is possible. Moreover, I show that this is the best explanation of who we are for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is that it provides the metaphysical foundations for global ethics." Variations on Kolak's heretical theme have been voiced periodically throughout the ages (the Upanishads, Averroes, Giordano Bruno, Josiah Royce); more recently, some of the world's greatest physicists, such as Erwin Schrodinger, Fred Hoyle, and Freeman Dyson have espoused it. Dyson, the legendary physicist who took over Einstein's office at the Princeton Institute of Advanced Study, has been sympathetic to Kolak's views since Kolak's physics days. The book has been praised by luminaries such as W.V.O. Quine (Harvard), Johan van Benthem (Stanford), and Derek Parfit (All Souls College, Oxford). It offers "A full-contact philosophy for what may well be nothing less than the final showdown in our age-old Socratic battle against authority. Thinking that what matters is not what separates us but what we all have in common undermines all authority, even our own. It unmasks personal separatism as an illusion by which we dominate each other because we cannot dominate ourselves. The logic of identity forbids it." Recent articles inspired by or responding to Kolak's views will appear this year in a special issue of Synthese: An International Journal for Epistemology, Methodology and Philosophy of Science (Springer). A sample chapter of I Am You is available at http://www.springer.com/sgw/cda/frontpage/0,11855,5-40385-22-35205938-detailsPage%253Dppmmedia%257CsamplePages%257CsamplePages,00.html
Kolak's books are having a growing influence on philosophy and beyond. He continues to work on the logical foundations of quantum mechanics and a mathematical model of consciousness (e.g. Stone-Čech compactification) that integrates relativity and quantum mechanics using an "Ultra-Strong (Open World) Nonlocality" variation on a (spinning, with closed timelike paths) Gödel universe, and other such foundational issues in mathematics, physics and logic further refined with Jaakko Hintikka's IF (Independence-Friendly) and epistemic logics. He has also made original contributions to the philosophy of religion, the history of philosophy, and the teaching of philosophy. His In Search of God: the Language and Logic of Belief, in the words of Princeton physicist John Archibald Wheeler, is "An inspiring story of how we humans get our inquiring minds and how we all end up asking great questions." In From the Presocratics to the Present: A Personal Odyssey (McGraw Hill 1998), Kolak presents a fully reintegrated history of philosophy. His Wisdom without Answers, an innovative new approach to teaching philosophy presently in its sixth edition worldwide, has been used at West Point to train cadets in the art of asking the right questions. His latest book, Principles of Cognitive Science, just published in London by Routledge, "marks a new territory in the teaching of cognitive science," according to Valerie Hardcastle of Virginia Polytechnic Institute.
Kolak is the founder of the philosophical therapy known as cognitive dynamics, which has been used to create new paradigms and technologies for expanding human consciousness, increasing intelligence, and improving creativity. Still under development, it has produced some extraordinary clinical and experimental results. More information about this aspect of Kolak's groundbreaking research in cognitive science (cognitive neuroscience; self-representation; information processing; knowledge representation; mental models; the logic and mathematics of mental processes; autism, confabulation, self-deception, MPD; dreaming), philosophy of mind (personal identity, consciousness, and self; philosophical psychology; psychoanalytic theory) can be found at the Rutgers University Center for Cognitive Science (RuCCS), http://ruccs.rutgers.edu/ruccs/people_faculty.php.
Kolak is also one of the world's foremost experts on dreams, particularly about how the brain synthesizes experience and creates the virtual world we call reality. His unique work on lucid dreams has recently been featured in a documentary, produced by NBC/Universal, which aired in November 2006 (Sci Fi Investigates) and can be downloaded at http://www.scifi.com/investigates/episodes/season01/0104/index.html. Kolak's integrated (cognitive and affective) approach to research leads him to not just write and think but also to create, in the sciences as well as in the arts. As a composer and a musician he has performed in concert on numerous occasions, both solo and with leading musicians such as Charlie Byrd, Dizzy Gillespie, and Frank Zappa. As a theatrical director and composer he has won the coveted Helen Hayes Creativity Award for productions such as Sartre's No Exit at the Source Theater in Washington, D.C. Among his film work is the teleplay Id-Entity, about multiple personality disorder as seen through the eyes of four patients, which Kolak wrote, directed, and produced, and the score and soundtrack for Forsaken Cries: the Case of Rwanda which he produced for PBS, by Amnesty International and narrated by Danny Glover. Most recently Kolak served as special advisor to Martin Scorsese in the making of The Departed, released by Warner Brothers, starring Leonardo DiCaprio, Matt Damon and Jack Nicholson, which has just won the Golden Globe and is slated to win several Oscars.
Having been raised in an atmosphere of international cooperation by parents who work for the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Kolak continues to foster close and extensive ties with international diplomatic, economic, scientific and artistic leaders. His stepfather Horst Ungerer was Assistant Director of the IMF and his uncle is the former German ambassador to Belgium and Consul General to New York and served as Rector of the European University in Belgium. Kolak has led family retreats whose participants have included world-renown business leaders and philanthropists such as Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft, Francisco A. Lorenzo, Chairman of Savoy Capital and CEO of Continental Airlines; David McCourt, Chairman and CEO of RCN Corporation; John Steffens, Vice-Chairman of Merril Lynch; and Walter Scott, Jr., Chairman of the Board, Level (3) Communications. In the United States, Kolak successfully lobbied the U.S. government on behalf of the children and retirees of the United Nations and its sister institutions the IMF and World Bank. As President and co-founder of the G-4 Coalition in Washington, D.C., Kolak helped write a bill, sponsored by Senator Ted Kennedy, allowing the children and retirees of the IMF and World Bank to become permanent U.S. residents. He testified before Congress and worked together with former World Bank President Robert S. McNamara to lobby successfully for the bill's passage. For his efforts on behalf of the international community living in the United States, he received a personal commendation from the Secretary General of the United Nations.
Dr. Daniel Kolak
Professor of Philosophy, William Paterson University of New Jersey
Affiliate, Rutgers Center for Cognitive Science (RuCCS)
RuCCS faculty web page:
Director of Research, Brain Behavior Center firstname.lastname@example.org
Member IIP: International Institute of Philosophy, Paris
Editorial Board, Synthese: An International Journal for Epistemology,
Methodology and Philosophy of Science
Series Editor, Longman Standard Library of Philosophy
I Am You: The Metaphysical Foundations for Global Ethics,
Cognitive Science (w/
Quantifiers, Questions, and Quantum Physics (with John Symons)
The Three Pillars of Wisdom,
Socrates on Trial,
On Hintikka, Belmont: Wadsworth 2001
Wisdom Without Answers (w/ Raymond Martin) 5th Ed.,
Lovers of Wisdom, 2nd Ed.,
In Search of Myself (novel), Belmont:
From the Presocratics to the Present: A Personal Odyssey, McGraw Hill 1998
In Search of God: The Language and Logic of Belief,
One Thousand and One Questions,
Philosophy of Religion,
The Experience of Philosophy (w/ R. Martin), 6th Ed. 2005,
The Longman Standard History of Philosophy (w/ G. Thomson),
The Longman Standard History of 20th Century Philosophy (w/ G. Thomson), Pearson/Longman 2005
The Longman Standard History of 19th Century Philosophy (w/ G. Thomson), Pearson/Longman 2005
The Longman Standard History of Modern Philosophy (w/ G. Thomson),
The Longman Standard History of Medieval Philosophy (w/ G. Thomson),
The Longman Standard History of Ancient Philosophy (w/ G. Thomson),
Mayfield Anthology of Western Philosophy, Foreword by W.V.O.
From Plato to Wittgenstein: The Historical Foundations of Mind,
Self, Cosmos, God (w/ R. Martin)
Self and Identity (w/ Raymond Martin)
Articles and Chapters:
"Who Am I?" Synthese: An International Journal for the Methodology, Epistemology, and Philosophy of Science, forthcoming
"Identity Matters: A Response to Shoemaker, Catterson, Lombard, Martin, Schechtman, Thomson, and Zovko," Synthese: An International Journal for the Methodology, Epistemology, and Philosophy of Science, forthcoming
"Meaning," (w/ R. Martin), in Voices of Wisdom, Gary Kessler, ed., Wadsworth 2006
"Morality and the Problem of Other Persons: From Sidgwick to Rawls and Parfit," Experience of Philosophy,
"The Man Who Mistook Himself For the World," Experience of Philosophy, OUP, 2005
"The Results are In: The Scope and Import of Hintikka's Philosophy," Quantifiers, Questions and Quantum Physics, Springer 2004, pp. 205-268
"Nicholas Krebs: Coincidentia Oppositorun and the Identity of the Infinite," Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Thomas Hockey, ed.,
"Erwin Schrödinger: Wave Mechanics and the Advent of Quantum Theory," Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Thomas Hockey, ed.,
"Augustus De Morgan: Application of Algebraic and Numerical Analysis to Science," Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Thomas Hockey, ed.,
"Carl Neumann: Galilean-Newtonian Theory of Mechanics," Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Thomas Hockey, ed.,
"Alfred North Whitehead: Actuality, Possibility, and Ingression Through Subject to Object" Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Thomas Hockey, ed.,
"Hendrik Lorentz: Local Time, the Fitzgerald Contraction and the Lorentz Transformation as the Basis for Einstein's Restricted Theory of Relativity," Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Thomas Hockey, ed.,
"Johann Bernouilli III: Mathematical Calculus, Differential Equations and the Tautochrone Curve," Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Thomas Hockey, ed., Springer, 2006
"William Wollaston: Three Dimensional Geometrical Conception of Atoms and the Camera Lucida" Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Thomas Hockey, ed., Springer, 2006
"Johann Balmer: the Role of the Spectral Series Formula in the Advent of Quantum Mechanics," Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Thomas Hockey, ed.,
"Victor Hess and the Discovery of Cosmic Rays" Encyclopedia of Astronomers, Thomas Hockey, ed.,
"Is Hintikka's Logic First Order?" (w/ Matti Eklund) Synthese: An International Journal for the Methodology, Epistemology, and Philosophy of Science, 131(3): 371-388 June 2002
"Consciousness, Self and Reality," (w/ Daniel C. Dennett), Questioning Matters, McGraw Hill 2000, 338-348
"Philosophy, the Bible and God," (w/ Alvin Plantinga), Questioning Matters, McGraw Hill 2000, 491-507
"Aesthetics: the State of the Art," (w/ Jerrold Levinson), Questioning Matters, McGraw Hill 2000, 690-697
"Quantum Cosmology, the Anthropic Principle, and Why is There Something Rather Than Nothing?" Experience of Philosophy, 5th Ed.,
"Descartes Among the Ruins," Experience of Philosophy, 5th ed. OUP 2002, 96-103
"Grand Unification Theories (GUTs) and the End of the World," Experience of Philosophy, 3rd ed., 1996,
"Philosophy After Death," Experience of Philosophy, 3rd ed.,
"Finding Our Selves: Identification, Identity and Multiple Personality," Philosophical Psychology 6 (1993) 363-386
"The Metaphysics and Metapsychology of Personal Identity: Why Thought Experiments Matter in Deciding Who We Are," American Philosophical Quarterly, 30 (1993) 39-50
"Art and Intentionality" Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism 48 (1990) 158-162
"Personal Identity and Causality: Becoming Unglued" (w/ Raymond Martin) American Philosophical Quarterly 24 (1987)
"The Incredible Shrinking Zeno," (w/ David Goloff) in The Experience of Philosophy, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th Ed. 2005, New York: Oxford University Press, 41-56
"Veber Sinn un Bedeutung" (translation of Frege's "On Sense and Reference"), Mayfield Anthology of Western Philosophy
"Mysticism and the Experience of God" in The Experience of Philosophy, 3rd & 4th Ed., 244-256
"The Glue of Belief," Experience of Philosophy,
"Pascal's Wager Refined," Experience of Philosophy,
"Causality, Responsibility and the Free Will Defense" Self, Cosmos, God, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich 1993, 286-301
"Experiment II," The Experience of Philosophy, 2nd Ed.,
"The Wine is in the Glass," The Experience of Philosophy, 6th, 5th, 4th, 3rd, 2nd, 1st eds., New York: Oxford University Press 2005, pp. 473-477 (6th ed.), reprinted in Questions for the Soul, Keith Kraseman, ed., Copley Publishing 1998
"The Experiment," The Experience of Philosophy,
"Unity of Consciousness," (w/ R. Martin) Self & Identity, Macmillan 1991, 3-15
"Personal Identity," (w/ R. Martin) in
"Self" (w/ R. Martin) in
Papers and Talks :
"Stepping Into the Same Rivers: Intelligence, Personal Identity and the Metaphysical Foundations for Global Ethics," The International Symposium: Platonism and Forms of Intelligence, The Institute of Philosophy, Zagreb, Croatia and Hvar, Croatia, Oct. 2006
"Virtue, Individuality, and the Function of Higher Education,"
"The Meaning of (College) Life," invited open forum with students,
"Explaining Consciousness: Nonlocality, Subjectivity, and Stone-Cech Compactification,"
"The Function of Education," Address to Deans and Chairs,
"Philosophy and Jazz: Shedding Logic," (Lecture and concert) Provost's Faculty Research/Creative Expression Series, William Paterson University of New Jersey, April 2005
"Questions, Quantifiers, and Quantum Physics: A Roundtable Symposium," American Philosophical Association,
"IF Logic, Nonlocality, and the Foundations of Quantum Mechanics," Invited Paper, American Philosophical Association, with J. Hintikka and J. Van Benthem, Chicago, March 2004
"Symposium: Philosophy and the Artsthe Aesthetics of Jazz; A Roundtable Dialogue Between Philosophers and the World of Jazz Musicians and Teachers," WPUNJ, March 2003
"Jazz and Philosophy," Music Honors Seminar Guest Lecture, WPUNJ, October 2002
"Generating Ideas for Research," Program of the 6th Annual Conference of the
"Turning Communication Theory Inside Out," Keynote Address, 59th Annual NY State Communication Association,
"Pleased to Make Your Acquaintance: Wittgenstein's Ontology of Language," 59th Annual New York State Communication Association,
"Dennett, Sperry, and the Bifurcation of Consciousness," 59th
Colloquium Chair: Logic in Philosophy, "What is Modeled by Truth in All Models" and "Nominalism and Metalogic," Pacific 2000 Meeting, American Philosophical Association
"The Metaphysics of Identity," Research Seminar, HSS, WPUNJ Nov. 2000
"I Am You,"
"This Talk Has No Title,"
"A Dialogue With Alvin Plantinga," WPUNJ, Dec. 1998
"Logic, Space, and Architecture: The Implications of Technology," Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
"The Inward Journey," Cunard Distinguished
"Aloneness," Cunard Distinguished
"Relationship," Cunard Distinguished
"Freedom," Cunard Distinguished
"The Wholeness of Life," Cunard Distinguished
"Living With Insight," Cunard Distinguished
"Is the Universe a Computer Program?" College of Wooster, Wooster, Ohio, Oct. 1997
"Nonstandard Set Theory, Zeno's Paradox and Rationality: What Does Mathematics Encode?" University of Maryland, Oct. 1995
"Quantum Cosmology and the Origin of the Cosmos," Cunard Distinguished
"Mind and Nature," Cunard Distinguished
"The Greek Origins of Philosophy, Science and Mathematics," Cunard Distinguished
"Global Ethics," Cunard Distinguished
"Cloning, Ethics and the Law: a Response to Melinda Roberts,"
"The Church vs. Galileo,"
"What Is a Philosophy Program?" Pace University, Feb. 1994
"A Free Lunch in a Clean, Well-Lighted Place: Quantum Genesis, The Anthropic Principle, and "Why Is There Something Rather Than Nothing?" WPUNJ, October 1994
"Identification, Identity and Multiple Personality Disorder," WPUNJ, October 1992
"What is Philosophy?" Union City Jr. High School, Union City, NJ, July 1992
"The Mind in the Brain in the Vat,"
"Why Do We Exist?" and "The Meaning of Life," Cunard Distinguished
"Logic, Reality and Wittgenstein,"
"Descartes, Knowledge and Reality: Implications of Cognitive Science,"
"Personal Identity Matters"
"Against Values," University of
"Art and Identity: the Cosmos as Art," WPUNJ, Oct. 1990
"Cognitive Dissociation and the Boundaries of Self,"
"Borders of Identity,"
"I Am You: Toward a New Theory of Personal Identity," City
"Art and Intentionality,"
The Lovers of Wisdom WebSite:
Kolak's Lovers of Wisdom website was designed by former William Paterson Univ. Philosophy students. It contains further resources on your favorite philosophers.
Buy his books: http://www.amazon.com/s?ie=UTF8&search-type=ss&index=books&field-author=Daniel%20Kolak&page=1
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