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Your intuitions are not Magic

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From Less Wrong:

we need to study the cognitive sciences, figure out the way our intuitions work and how we might correct for mistakes. Above all, we need to learn to always question the workings of our minds, for we need to understand that they are not magical.

. . . → Read More: Your intuitions are not Magic

What sort of mirror?

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While composing this post on No Agenda Forums, an interesting problem came up. How can I show someone their own biases? They are obvious to me, but (by definition) the other person’s entire system of thinking is arranged in such a way as to find their biases valid.

After coming to . . . → Read More: What sort of mirror?

You make and break your own religion

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Note: I addressed the following essay to the general population of the No Agenda Forums, a community that I cherish despite frequent frustration. It is peopled by many conspiracy theorists and champions of various “alternative” things, such as alternative explanations, alternative medicine, etc. In short, people I cannot really reach on . . . → Read More: You make and break your own religion

Argument > Debate

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Debating

Like most sports, I’m not much good at debate. I say it’s a sport because it’s a competition with a winner and loser where the participants’ skills have the largest bearing on the outcome.

I think that most people casually lump debate and argument into the same mental bin; if . . . → Read More: Argument > Debate

Closed-minded, all

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We suck at thinking, all of us– humanity. It’s poetically tragic given that we haven’t met any life forms who can do a better job of it yet.

We skeptics enjoy thinking of ourselves as rational and reasonable, smugly superior among a vast sea of credulous, closed-minded believers. But . . . → Read More: Closed-minded, all

Hearts and minds

As we learn more about how brains work, traditional views can be called into question. Recent research indicates that (at least some) decision-making processes are “prepared” by the brain unconsciously several seconds before there is an awareness of having come to a decision.

“In the study, participants could freely decide if they wanted to press . . . → Read More: Hearts and minds

Why are we here

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I spent rather a long time contemplating the creation of this site. There seem to be many good reasons not to bother, including but not limited to:

What do I have to say that merits reading; hasn’t everything of value been expressed before, by my intellectual and literary superiors? Aren’t . . . → Read More: Why are we here