These are a philosopher's pages. Writings by him are in them, many on consciousness, many on right and wrong in politics. Also papers by him and others on determinism and freedom.
One commitment in all this is to mainstream philosophy, which is a greater concentration than that of science on the logic of ordinary intelligence -- (i) clarity, usually analysis, (ii) consistency and validity, (iii) completeness, (iv) generalness. In short, thinking about facts rather than getting to them? Another commitment of these pages, about what is right, is to the Principle of Humanity. 


Oxford University Press

Actual Conciousness

          To understand what it is to be conscious, don’t start with any of five leading philosophical ideas -- qualia, what it’s like to be something, traditional subjectivity, intentionality, phenomenality, or any bundle of them. Start with a figurative database. It leads to ordinary consciousness in the primary or core sense being initially adequately clarified, which kind of clarification is essential to inquiry and real agreement and disagreement, as something's being actual.  

The resulting wholly literal and explicit theory of consciousness, Actualism, first is that with consciousness in perceiving, what is actual is a spatio-temporal piece or stage out there of a physical world, usually a room. Not sense data, any other representations, a self, functional or cognitive-science relations, some constitution or structure of consciousness, or whatever else from the histories of philosophy and science, whatever roles such things play in the associated unconscious mentality. 

With thinking and with wanting as against perceiving, what is actual, to be briefer than brief, is only representations-with-attitudes.

Being actual, second, is being subjectively physical, differently so with perceptual consciousness as against each of cognitive and affective consciousness. No representationism by itself is a sufficient account of cognitive and affective consciousness. 

The subjectively physical as a whole, all parts being open to full and explicit characterization, no gesturing, is one great category of all physicality, the other being objective physicality. 

Actualism right or wrong is therefore a wholly different  physicalism from predecessors. It is different too in being partly an externalism and partly an internalism or cranialism. 

It deals exclusively with the prime subject with respect to the philosophy and science of mind. It is argued to satisfy assembled criteria better than any competing theory. It denies unique mystery about mind. It claims to explain subjectivity fully, only partly by having a real physical world dependent not only on the objective physical world but on you neurally. 

Despite being persistently worked out, is it a programme? It may be philosophically as well as scientifically fertile. 

Somewhat longer summary of Actual Consciousness

Book forepages: Contents, Acknowledgements, Introduction 

Actual Consciousness -- a lecture

Actual Consciousness and Science

Author talk launch party

Oxford University Press Catalogue


Royal Institute of Philosophy Annual Lectures
Oxford University Press


The 17 lectures in the volume are in five groups, as listed just below. They are preceded by brief intoductory summaries by the chairman of all the lectures, Ted Honderich. Turn if you wish to the general introduction to the volume. Turn too if you wish to one of the short introductory summaries, to the Nagel lecture, others to succeed one another from time to time on this website.


Thomas Nagel, Conceiving the Impossible and the Mind-Body Problem

Peter Strawson, Perception and Its Objects

Tyler Burge, Perception: Where Mind Begins?

Jerry Fodor, The Revenge of the Given: Mental Representation Without Conceptualization

Ned Block, Attention and Mental Paint

John McDowell, Intention in Action

Christine Korsgaard, On Having a Good

Tom Scanlon, Reasons Fundamentalism

Simon Blackburn, The Sovereignty of Reason

Mary Warnock, What Is Natural and Should We Care About It?

John Searle, Freedom of the Will as a Problem in Neurobiology

Derek Parfit, We Are Not Human Beings

Anthony Kenny, Knowledge, Belief and Faith: Is Religion Really the Root of All Evil?


Noam Chomsky, Simple Truths, Hard Choices: Some Thoughts on Terror, Justice, and Self-Defence

Alasdair MacIntyre, Social Structures and Their Threats to Moral Agency

Jurgen Habermas, Religious Tolerance: The Pacemaker for Cultural Rights


Bernard Williams, Philosophy as a Humanist Discipline

David Chalmers, On the Limits of Philosophical Progress

FOR EVERYTHING ON THIS WEBSITE, GO TO THE FULL INDEX.  But -- here is a survey of the larger and smaller categories of papers, chapters, lectures, reviews, a speech or two, some television and other media and so on on.

1. Consciousness, its sides, the mind, functionalism and cognitive science, Davidson's Anomalous Monism, mental causation,
mind-brain dualism, physicalism, Roland Penrose's inner tubes, David Papineau's physicalism, that left-behind Union Theory of consciousness and brain now succeeded by Actualism.

2. Politics and hence right and wrong, consequentialism about rightness, equality and its obvious problem, the Principle of Humanity, maybe its holiness, conservatism and liberalism, hierarchic democracy,  civil disobedience, Marx and Mill, Anti-Semitism and Semitic Inhumanity, neo-Zionist philosophy, terrorisms, the moral right of the Palestinians to their terrorism, war and the terrorist-war criminal Blair,

3. Determinism's truth and its relation to freedom and responsibility, the absurdity of both the ideas that determinism is compatible and that determinism is incompatible with freedom, philosophical autobiography, philosophical attacks and defences and rows, and more.

4 General and miscellaneous. Russell's great Theory of Descriptions and Strawson's objection, two views of the Logical Positivist A. J. Ayer, effects taken as merely high probabilities.

And here, from each of these four categories, a few quick selections.

1. Consciousness and mind

John Searle and Property Dualism

Actual Consciousness, the 1st review, Times Higher Education

Actual Consciousness: Why it makes consciousness a subject for still more science

Actual Consciousness: An author's oversight already, the tyranny of the present, grandiosity

Hay-on-Wye videos -- consciousness lecture

Descartes, dualism, objective physicalism, the true physicalism -- another summary

Davidson's Anomalous Monism and the Champion of Mauve

Roger Penrose and Ted Honderich on consciousness

Excerpts from 11 papers by others and from Honderich's replies in a book on his now outlived thinking about consciousness and radical externalism

From that past book, seeing things & intentionality in seeing

2. politics and right and wrong

Thoughts after the book After The Terror on our culpable omissions in a loss of 20 million years of living time in Africa

A book interview with Ted Honderich on American state terrorism

Occupy London talks to the occupiers at St. Paul's Cathedral

A tv interview & transcript about Palestine

Full lectures (Chomsky, Honderich etc) in a series on terror

Hay-on-Wye videos -- debate on terrorism -- & the talk Terrorisms, Wars, The New Teletubbies

The Neo-Zionist libel of anti-semitism and the fall and rise of a book in Germany

On Understanding, Endorsing or Inciting Terrorism

A Greek interview -- Mass Civil Disobedience Today

Chomsky on simple truths about terrorism etc

Postscript to the German book-banning having to do with purported anti-semitism: The Absent Prof. Brumlik

Our air war on Libya

3. determinism, freedom, responsibility

Dan Dennett, a review of Honderich A Theory of Determinism: The Mind, Neuroscience, and Life Hopes

A. J. Ayer review of Honderich determinism book above

A recent and different idea on determinism and our human standing owed to thinking about consciousness

Doyle on Honderich on determinism and freedom

On the idea that effects are only high probabilities

Galen Strawson on free will

Ch.1 of the book How Free Are You? in French

The general paper Effects, Determinism, Neither Compatibilism Nor Incompatibilism, Consciousness

Maybe true if traditional articles on determinism & freedom by McCall & McCann

More on determinism and freedom by Manuel Vargas & Ted Honderich

4. general, miscellaneous

Thinking about the nature of  time -- the relations of (a) before and after as against (b) past and present

A letter to the editor against a distinguished scientist about philosophy as dead, time, etc.

On Bernard Williams on moral luck, and other philosophers on other items, thoughts on them

Terrorist-war criminals such as Blair

Danish interview, gratifying

English interview at the Garrick Club

Is the mind ahead of the brain or behind it? Superior thoughts on the neuroscientist Libet.

You gotta read it -- a review of Searle on mind, language and society

Honderich, McGinn, Strohminger -- academic rows and insults about two reviewed books, one being Honderich's On Consciousness


Kings College London, 24 Jan

Royal Institute of Philosophy 28 Feb

St. Andrews, Apr 1

Hay on Wye, lecture on consciousness 27 May

Hay on Wye, panel discussion with Thomas Pogge on world poverty also 27 May

New York University, consciousness, Sept 29

Graduate Centre, CUNY, consciousness, Oct 1

Oxford Brookes, Oct

Bursa, Turkey, Oct 

Magdeburg, Germany, Nov

Berlin School of Brain and Mind, Humboldt University, Nov

Curriculum Vitae



Invitation to an open philosophical website:   Submissions are welcome on consciousness and mind, determinism, free will, mind,  political moralities, Palestine, Zionism, neo-Zionism, other related subjects.