In this epic debate on one of the hottest issues of the day, scientist and Skeptic magazine publisher Michael Shermer squares off with philosopher and X-Risk Institute founder Phil Torres on the existential risks facing humanity and whether or not we’re doomed. Shermer and Torres will address both religious and secular doomsday scenarios, from Armageddon and the Second Coming to nuclear war, climate change and environmental degradation, artificial intelligence and other disruptive technologies, biological warfare, nuclear terrorism, overpopulation, super volcanos and other earthly threats, asteroid impacts and other cosmic threats, and how each might or might not be the end of the world as we know it. Not only have many religious leaders proclaimed that the end is near, a number of world-class scientists think that there is at least a 50/50 chance we will not survive to the year 2100. This makes this debate quite possibly the most important conversation we can have because it involves the very future of our civilization, and possibly our species.


    Dr. Michael Shermer is the Publisher of Skeptic magazine, a monthly columnist for Scientific American, and a Presidential Fellow at Chapman University. He is the author of The Moral Arc, The Believing Brain, Why People Believe Weird Things, Why Darwin Matters, The Mind of the Market, How We Believe, and The Science of Good and Evil. His next book is Heavens on Earth: The Scientific Search for Immortality, the Afterlife, and Utopia. His two TED talks, viewed nearly 8 million times, were voted in the top 100 of the more than 2000 TED talks. Follow him @michaelshermer

    Phil Torres is an author and blogger at the Future of Life Institute, Affiliate Scholar at the Institute for Ethics and Emerging Technologies, founder of the X-Risks Institute, and a writer whose work focuses on emerging technologies, existential risks, and apocalyptic terrorism. He’s been published in Skeptic, Free Inquiry, The Humanist, the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, Common Dreams, Humanity+, and Salon, among others. His is the author of The End: What Science and Religion Tell Us About the Apocalypse and the forthcoming Morality, Foresight, and Human Flourishing: An Introduction to Existential Risks. Follow him at @xriskology.


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