Intelligence in nature: an inquiry into knowledge / Jeremy Narby. some difficulty with the possibility of both nonhuman intelligence and the subjective acquis-. Intelligence in Nature has ratings and 59 reviews. Anthropologist Jeremy Narby has altered how we understand the Shamanic cultures and traditions that. Intelligence in Nature: An Inquiry into Knowledge is a non-fiction book by Jeremy Narby. The book is an ethnographic work which continues Narby’s quest .

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I disapprove of the decisions made surrounding title and subtitle given that I think they eliminate a large swath of the intended audience who may well pass it over thinking it anti-evolutionary.

But there’s something missing. Plants learn, remember and decide, without brains. Amazonian Shamans, Narby tells us, are able to harness the medicinal properties of plants because the Shamans communicate with them while under the influence of ayahuasca.

Scientists and shaman’s are given equal weight, and it is clear the author has a lot of respect for the revelatory powers of ayahuasca.

Narby spent several years living with the Ashaninca in the Peruvian Amazon cataloging indigenous uses of rainforest resources to help iin ecological destruction. I just wish Narby’s writing was even half as engaging as the ideas he posits!

Intelligence in Nature: An Inquiry Into Knowledge

Lists with This Book. Jan 23, Aaron rated it really liked it. We are experiencing technical difficulties. Paperbackpages. May 07, Cole rated it liked it. Do we truly understand reality consciously, or is it the unconscious nature of our own intelligence that understands it for us? Mar 15, eliza rated it nxture it. Thus interviews with Japanese and Eastern European scientists natby work in this field form the evidential support for the book. And although I do admit I enjoyed this book, I felt at times like there was something lacking in its entirety.


Essentially Jeremy Narby is asking how much sentience we ar This book questions intentionality posed as “intelligence” in nature.

INTELLIGENCE IN NATURE by Jeremy Narby | Kirkus Reviews

Quite disappointing after his original and interesting previous book “The cosmic serpent”. Continuing the journey begun in his acclaimed book The Cosmic Serpentthe noted anthropologist ventures firsthand into both traditional cultures and the most up-todate discoveries of contemporary science to determine nature’s secret ways of knowing. Now, in one of his most extraordinary journeys, Narby travels the globe-from the Amazon Basin to the Far East-to probe what traditional healers and pioneering researchers understand about the intelligence present in all forms of life.

The only pages that really had my interest were about his experiences with shamans, in the beginning of the book. Essentially Jeremy Narby is asking how much sentience we are willing to grant to intelliegnce and how we are going about doing just intellifence as science probes deeper into living systems. Seeing as we are part of nature, and also self-evidently intelligent, should we be so surprised. It also shows that the body plays a role in the reasoning process. We can’t even guess, but we haven’t got much of a clue on the brain.

Mar 02, Pages Buy. LitFlash The eBooks you want at the lowest prices. Bees that can abstract, slime molds solving mazes and plants that communicate is all inelligence interesting stuff. Open Preview See a Problem? I’m just reviewing after reading this a year ago, but in particular the discussion about intelligent capabilitie Intelligence is one of those concepts which is age old and essential, but being fundamentally rearticulated in modern times.

Definitely read this if you want to go to sleep confused as to what life is. But since those were just prologue, I was left with an otherwise pretty unsatisfying read. This book is great for that.

Mar 02, Stephen rated it really liked it. Perhaps I’ll try again someday – then again, there are an awful lot of books out there to read.


The delivery of support for this argument was interwoven with things I felt very unnecessary. There definitely are some interesting parts here and there, but after finishing it I just wasn’t impressed with what I had learned. In fact the extended quotes provided in the back of the book make for a fascinating read and Narby can be applauded for collecting it all in one place.

Apr 29, Harrison rated it really liked it Shelves: In a controlled experiment, scientists asked people to draw cards from four decks, two of which were heavily skewed with penalties. He also discovered that butterflies have eyes on their genitals.

The author found a better term as the result of a visit to Japan where there in not such a distinction of man-vs-nature in the concept of chi-sei, which conotates a sort of knowingness or recognizing-ness and as exemplified by creatures such as slime molds which lack a nervous system or a brain, are unicellular yet can navigate mazes when food is placed at either end.

What is of interest are the descriptions of researchers views about intelligence and the capacity of seemingly simple organisms to perform complex tasks. Jul 23, Clark Hugo rated it it was amazing. Just like the other book, this one takes the form of the report on the author’s journey of discovery, this time about the western notion of intelligence in nature.

See how Charles Darwin came up with his ideas?

Looking for More Great Reads? A beautiful and easy to read book. I’ve quoted parts of it in conversation. What these researchers and informants have to relate is of interest, but how these ideas are related jermy not.

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