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Proposal: How to make a positive *dent* in an adult population’s critical thinking skills

 
bardoXV
 
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bardoXV
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09 July 2013 15:28
 
icehorse - 08 July 2013 07:20 PM

Imagine that we can give adults a “thinking skills rating” from 1-10, with 1 being extremely dogmatic and close-minded, 5 being sometimes open / sometimes closed, and 10 being extremely open minded, reason-based, unattached, and so on.

I agree that tackling the 1s and 2s and 3s in the population is a tough task - maybe not possible. So the idea is to focus on the 4s and 5s - folks that aren’t so arrogant, folks that need just a little nudge. Folks who are just one Sam Harris YouTube away from leaving their religion : )


Do you see Religion as a litmus test for a lack of critical thinking?

 
 
Jefe
 
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Jefe
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09 July 2013 16:27
 
bardoXV - 09 July 2013 01:28 PM
icehorse - 08 July 2013 07:20 PM

Imagine that we can give adults a “thinking skills rating” from 1-10, with 1 being extremely dogmatic and close-minded, 5 being sometimes open / sometimes closed, and 10 being extremely open minded, reason-based, unattached, and so on.

I agree that tackling the 1s and 2s and 3s in the population is a tough task - maybe not possible. So the idea is to focus on the 4s and 5s - folks that aren’t so arrogant, folks that need just a little nudge. Folks who are just one Sam Harris YouTube away from leaving their religion : )


Do you see Religion as a litmus test for a lack of critical thinking?

it can be.

Certainly many individual religious beliefs are litmus tests for critical thinking.

 
 
icehorse
 
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icehorse
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09 July 2013 16:47
 

That’s a pretty open-ended question but I’ll take a whack at it:

Maybe we can say it has something to do with “honest self-awareness”. For example, imagine a religious scientist. When he’s in the lab he applies critical thinking skills. When he’s at church he tells himself *explicitly* that he is turning off his critical thinking skills and relying on dogma and faith.

 
 
bardoXV
 
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09 July 2013 19:01
 
icehorse - 09 July 2013 02:47 PM

That’s a pretty open-ended question but I’ll take a whack at it:

Maybe we can say it has something to do with “honest self-awareness”. For example, imagine a religious scientist. When he’s in the lab he applies critical thinking skills. When he’s at church he tells himself *explicitly* that he is turning off his critical thinking skills and relying on dogma and faith.


Then let me narrow it down a bit.  Just considering the belief that God exists, and ignoring all the other dogma that is usually hung onto it, would this be a litmus test? or can a person who believes that there is a God be abe to think critically?

 
 
Jefe
 
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09 July 2013 19:03
 
bardoXV - 09 July 2013 05:01 PM
icehorse - 09 July 2013 02:47 PM

That’s a pretty open-ended question but I’ll take a whack at it:

Maybe we can say it has something to do with “honest self-awareness”. For example, imagine a religious scientist. When he’s in the lab he applies critical thinking skills. When he’s at church he tells himself *explicitly* that he is turning off his critical thinking skills and relying on dogma and faith.


Then let me narrow it down a bit.  Just considering the belief that God exists, and ignoring all the other dogma that is usually hung onto it, would this be a litmus test? or can a person who believes that there is a God be abe to think critically?

Can a person who believes in a different god than you be considered to think critically?

 
 
bardoXV
 
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bardoXV
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09 July 2013 19:09
 

There is a question that occasionally crosses my mind, and that is the problem of free will and the belief that God knows everything that will happen.  Setting the questions of Gods existance and free will asside for the monemt, is it possible to have free will if the future, in detail, is ‘knowable’?  In other words if the future can be known (and I don’t care by whom) can we still have free will.  I have had Religiious people tell me that we definately have free will and that God knows exactly what we will do, and they don’t seem to see a contradiction.

 
 
bardoXV
 
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09 July 2013 19:15
 
Jefe - 09 July 2013 05:03 PM
bardoXV - 09 July 2013 05:01 PM
icehorse - 09 July 2013 02:47 PM

That’s a pretty open-ended question but I’ll take a whack at it:

Maybe we can say it has something to do with “honest self-awareness”. For example, imagine a religious scientist. When he’s in the lab he applies critical thinking skills. When he’s at church he tells himself *explicitly* that he is turning off his critical thinking skills and relying on dogma and faith.


Then let me narrow it down a bit.  Just considering the belief that God exists, and ignoring all the other dogma that is usually hung onto it, would this be a litmus test? or can a person who believes that there is a God be abe to think critically?

Can a person who believes in a different god than you be considered to think critically?

Quite honestly I don’t see “Which God” as an issue for me, but I understand that some people are very adamant that theirs is the only true God.  I’ve been reading Joseph Campbell and I believe he is correct that all Mythology had the same origins, and since Religion grows out of Mythology all religions would then have the same origins.  To extend this would be to say that all God’s are the same, or there is only one God but many descriptions of God.

 
 
icehorse
 
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09 July 2013 19:16
 

I don’t know the customs here at PR, but in other forums it’s considered polite to say:

Bardo - I think you’re hijacking this thread. If you want to discuss free will, please start another thread.

Is that cool here at PR? If so, consider it said : )

 
 
Jefe
 
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09 July 2013 19:29
 
bardoXV - 09 July 2013 05:15 PM
Jefe - 09 July 2013 05:03 PM
bardoXV - 09 July 2013 05:01 PM
icehorse - 09 July 2013 02:47 PM

That’s a pretty open-ended question but I’ll take a whack at it:

Maybe we can say it has something to do with “honest self-awareness”. For example, imagine a religious scientist. When he’s in the lab he applies critical thinking skills. When he’s at church he tells himself *explicitly* that he is turning off his critical thinking skills and relying on dogma and faith.


Then let me narrow it down a bit.  Just considering the belief that God exists, and ignoring all the other dogma that is usually hung onto it, would this be a litmus test? or can a person who believes that there is a God be abe to think critically?

Can a person who believes in a different god than you be considered to think critically?

Quite honestly I don’t see “Which God” as an issue for me, but I understand that some people are very adamant that theirs is the only true God.  I’ve been reading Joseph Campbell and I believe he is correct that all Mythology had the same origins, and since Religion grows out of Mythology all religions would then have the same origins.  To extend this would be to say that all God’s are the same, or there is only one God but many descriptions of God.

Throw some critical thinking skills at that thought.

 
 
eudemonia
 
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09 July 2013 20:06
 

All Mythologies had the same origins? What origins would those all be then?

 
 
bardoXV
 
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09 July 2013 22:13
 
icehorse - 09 July 2013 05:16 PM

I don’t know the customs here at PR, but in other forums it’s considered polite to say:

Bardo - I think you’re hijacking this thread. If you want to discuss free will, please start another thread.

Is that cool here at PR? If so, consider it said : )

Call it stream of consciousness if you like but some posts make me think about things that relate, and I’m still trying to clarify critical thinking and what may or may not limit it or preclude it.  ‘Free Will’ is not the question, but the thinking that comes with the concepts of free will and determinism and in that light what can be said that will clarify the thinking about these seemingly contradictory concepts.

 
 
nv
 
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nv
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09 July 2013 23:03
 
icehorse - 09 July 2013 05:16 PM

I don’t know the customs here at PR, but in other forums it’s considered polite to say:

Bardo - I think you’re hijacking this thread. If you want to discuss free will, please start another thread.

Is that cool here at PR? If so, consider it said : )

I have a feeling Bardox is bored again. He likes to fuck with authority.

 
 
icehorse
 
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09 July 2013 23:40
 

rofl - fair enough Bardo

On my hypothetical scale though, you’re working the realms of 8s and 10s - I’m hoping to expose a few 4s to the idea of spotting a blatantly fallacious sales pitch (from a minister or a politician) when they see one.

 
 
bardoXV
 
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bardoXV
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10 July 2013 01:07
 
nonverbal - 09 July 2013 09:03 PM
icehorse - 09 July 2013 05:16 PM

I don’t know the customs here at PR, but in other forums it’s considered polite to say:

Bardo - I think you’re hijacking this thread. If you want to discuss free will, please start another thread.

Is that cool here at PR? If so, consider it said : )

I have a feeling Bardox is bored again. He likes to fuck with authority.

No,  I just found an interesting thread and thought I’d jump in.  Perhaps I’m not so narrow minded as to be so strict with the topic.

 
 
eudemonia
 
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10 July 2013 12:52
 

So, concerning Joseph Campbell-

‘Campbell’s concept of monomyth (one myth) refers to the theory that sees all mythic narratives as variations of a single great story. The theory is based on the observation that a common pattern exists underneath the narrative elements of most great myths, regardless of their origin or time of creation.

As a strong believer in the unity of human consciousness and its poetic expression through mythology, Campbell used this concept to expressed the idea that the whole of the human race can be seen as reciting a single story, who’s great spiritual importance relates to our search for that basic and eternal force that is the source of all things and into which everything will return.’

In other words, myth as metaphor to account for our existence, not necessarily explain it.

Campbell also reiterated that people who think metaphor is true are Theists. Those who don’t are atheists.

How much critical thinking does it take to understand what is metaphorical and what is literal?

 
 
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