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Download Does Santa Exist?: A Philosophical Investigation Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Does Santa Exist?: A Philosophical Investigation, by Sean Runnette, Eric Kaplan Click for printable size audiobook cover
0 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 50 out of 5 0.00 (0 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Sean Runnette, Eric Kaplan Narrator: Sean Runnette Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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From Eric Kaplan, acclaimed comedy writer, scholar, and coexecutive producer of The Big Bang Theory, comes a humorous philosophical investigation into the existence of Santa.

Metaphysics isn’t ordinarily much of a laughing matter. But in the hands of acclaimed comedy writer and scholar Eric Kaplan, a search for the truth about old St. Nick becomes a deeply insightful, laugh-out-loud discussion of the way some things exist but may not really be there. Just like Santa and his reindeer.

Even after we outgrow the jolly fellow, the essential paradox persists: there are some things we dearly believe in that are not universally acknowledged as real. In Does Santa Exist?, Kaplan shows how philosophy giants Bertrand Russell and Ludwig Wittgenstein strove to smooth over this uncomfortable meeting of the real and unreal—and failed. From there he turns to mysticism’s attempts to resolve such paradoxes, surveying Buddhism, Taoism, early Christianity, and Theosophy. Finally, this brilliant comic writer alights on—surprise—comedy as the ultimate resolution of the fundamental paradoxes of life, using examples from The Big Bang Theory, Monty Python’s cheese shop sketch, and many other pop-culture sources.

Kaplan delves deeper into what this means, from how our physical brains work to his own personal confrontations with life’s biggest questions: If we’re all going to die, what’s the point of anything? What is a perfect moment? What can you say about God? Or Santa?

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Quotes & Awards

  • “I’m not sure I’ve ever read a more peculiar book. Fortunately, it’s also smart, wise, charming, lucid, entertaining, big-hearted, and maybe even profound.”

    Kurt Andersen, New York Times bestselling author of Heyday

  • “Eric Kaplan’s Does Santa Exist? is the funniest book of philosophy since…well, ever.”

    Matt Groening, creator of The Simpsons and Futurama

  • “Eric Kaplan is more than a talented comedy writer. He is a deep soul, an intellectual master, and a brilliant communicator of the subtleties of the intersections between faith and logic. He will have you laughing, thinking harder than you’ve ever thought, and falling in love with the process of intellectual exploration all over again. A masterpiece.”

    Mayim Bialik, PhD, actress known for her roles as Blossom Russo in Blossom and Dr. Amy Farrah Fowler in The Big Bang Theory

  • “This is truly a book that I wish I had written. Eric brings great clarity of thought to some of the deepest questions of the mind and our understanding of the world. And he’s really funny.”

    Daniel Levitin, New York Times bestselling author of This is Your Brain on Music

  • “To bridge the paradoxes of logic and mysticism, Kaplan suggests comedy, at least ‘good’ comedy, as a way to ‘approach the unavoidable contradictions in our life.’ (After all, Santa is a jolly fellow.) As he teases out this synthesis, the author’s argument is both thought-provoking and, at times, less than convincing, but he proves to be an engaging thinker whose musings are always provocative. Kaplan’s investigation into the ontology of Santa Claus is erudite, readable, and exceedingly funny.”

    Kirkus Reviews

  • “Exceptionally interesting, rigorous, and I found it not only weirdly funny but deeply moving.”

    Hubert Dreyfus, professor of philosophy, University of California Berkeley, fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences

  • “If you can put this book down, you should see a doctor. Kaplan’s message burrows into the mind, beats up a few beliefs and then leaves with a triumphant bang.”

    Michael Gazzaniga, director of the SAGE Center for the Study of the Mind and founder of the Cognitive Neuroscience Society

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