Program Details

Reality +: The Reality of Virtual Reality and the Puzzling Nature of Existence

David Chalmers
Video Catch-up

Course Description

To celebrate the grand opening of FAU's Center for the Future Mind, OLLI Boca is proud to partner with FAU's College of Arts and Letters to host this unique opportunity to take a mind-bending journey through virtual worlds. Join leading philosopher David Chalmers as he illuminates the nature of reality and our place within it. Virtual reality is genuine reality; that's the central thesis of "Reality+," a new book by Chalmers, one of the Washington Post's Best Nonfiction Books of 2022. After an introduction from United States Representative Jerry McNerney, Chalmers will discuss his highly original work of "technophilosophy," giving a compelling analysis of our technological future. He argues that virtual worlds are not second-class worlds and that we can live meaningful lives in virtual reality. Along the way, Chalmers will conduct a grand tour of big ideas in philosophy and science, using virtual reality technology to offer a new perspective on long-established philosophical questions. How do we know that there's an external world? Is there a god? What is the nature of reality? What's the relation between mind and body? How can we lead a good life? All of these questions are illuminated or transformed by Chalmers' mind-bending analysis. 

About the Instructor

  • David Chalmers, Professor of Philosophy and Neural Science, is the co-director of the New York University's Center for Mind, Brain, and Consciousness. He is also an Honorary Professor of Philosophy at the Australian National University and co-director of the PhilPapers Foundation. His interests include the philosophy of mind (especially consciousness) and the foundations of cognitive science, physics, and technology, as well as the philosophy of language, metaphysics and epistemology, and many other areas.