Metaphysics of Science

It is now common for scientists and philosophers to use the successes of science to bolster particular metaphysical views.  For example, advances in neuroscience are used to challenge the existence of free will.   While such interpretations of neuroscientific findings may ultimately prove beyond reproach, the lab encourages an open minded and ecumenical perspective on the metaphysics of science.   In our view, there is much that science has yet to understand about reality, suggesting that firm conclusions about its ontological underpinnings are premature.   Several papers (e.g. Shariff, Vohs, & Schooler;   2010;  Schooler, 2011;  Schooler, Hunt, & Schooler, 2012), have considered alternative metaphysical assumptions that might be consistent with current scientific findings, and reviewed the arguments for remaining open to such perspectives.


Selected Publications


Jonathan Schooler

My lab’s research takes a “big picture” perspective in attempting to understand the nature of mental life, and in particular consciousness. Combining empirical, philosophical, and contemplative traditions, we address broad questions that cross traditional disciplinary boundaries.

Tam Hunt

Tam Hunt

Tam Hunt is an Affiliate Guest in Psychology in the META Lab. His work focuses on the philosophy of mind, reconciliation of scientific and spiritual views of the world, and the interaction of mind and matter. A practicing lawyer, Hunt brings a unique perspective to psychology and philosophy. Hunt also teaches at UCSB's graduate program Bren School of Environmental Science & Management, where he focuses on climate change law and policy and renewable energy law and policy.