I’ll cut the chase — I love podcasts. They make the best companions during hours spent doing minimal mental-effort work.
Though admittedly, it was a true-crime podcast which first got me hooked (yes, Serial), since then I have ventured to discover some amazing podcasts which aren’t all about blood and gore. The ones listed below deal with a range of topics, providing an abundant dose of food for thought. Listening to them often feels like eavesdropping on an intelligent conversation and leaves me with a new perspective, one I hadn’t considered before.
So here’s a list of five podcasts you should definitely check out in no particular order.
Hosted by: Taimur and Ali Abdaal
Summary: Each week the two brothers take a deep dive into topics revolving around “happiness, creativity, and the human condition.” Every episode feels like a candid chat, a conversation you’d have with your friend to explore the different facets of human experience. This podcast introduced me to some fascinating ideas such as transactional analysis and made me ask questions I hadn’t previously thought of (e.g how can we treat children morally?)
Hosted by: Eric Weinstein
Summary: Another thing that ‘Not Overthinking’ introduced me to was Eric Weinstein’s podcast — The portal. In his own words, “The portal is an exploration into discovery, including conversations with thought leaders.”
These thought leaders include Andrew Yang, Sam Hariss, Ryan Holiday, Garry Kasparov and Jocko Willink among many others.
Each episode is deeply fascinating. The episode on Jeffrey Epstein completely blew me away.
If you enjoy listening to deep conversations do enter the portal.
Hosted by: Ryan Holiday
Summary: A daily podcast with each episode ranging from 2 to 5 minutes in length, it makes for the perfect start to the day. Every day, Ryan Holiday reads out a short passage based on stoic philosophy, packed with wisdom and inspiration. The longer episodes are released on weekends when Holiday dwells deeper into practical application of stoic wisdom and occasionally also features guests.
Hosted by: Stephen West
Summary: I have been recently trying to dabble into philosophy and this podcast is an absolute boon. Starting from the very beginning, host Stephen West takes listeners through the ideas of philosophical thinkers in a chronological order. The complex concepts and theories are broken down and explained with easy to understand examples. The most inspiring bit about this podcast is that Stephen isn’t a philosophy graduate — he’s just a guy with an insane hunger for knowledge.
Vox: Today, Explained
Hosted by: Sean Rameswaram
Summary: In today's world, following the news feels like riding a bike through scorching flames while the most torturous music blares from all four sides. There’s just too much noise. Today, explained does a great job at explaining important events across the globe. Getting experts on board, Sean explores different sides of the story and asks questions that all of us are wanting to.
If you are fed up with the constant drumming of breaking news and are considering switching to podcasts, give this one a try.
P.S: For my true crime fans, don’t worry. I’ll have you covered in another article!