Human Intellect - the mutating software?
Computer Assisted Rationality
Thick as a brick ...
What have you learned recently?
After reading a lot of hubs and trying to understand the reason for some of the comments readers are posting, I get the impression, the basic skill of formulation a rational thought is not as widely applied as maybe desirable.
Take the issue of religious thought for example. I find the following suggestions highly faulty in their basic assumptions:
1 - Science and Atheism are simply other forms of religion
The argument often rests on the misunderstanding of the word faith and doesn't go much beyond the real question of the more significant aspect of the structure of thought and the differences in value some ideas represent.
Faith as used in religious arguments to justify ones belief in an object which has so far not been shown to exist in nature, such as a god or a soul, can be said to have a very low probability of ever being found to be real - maybe less than 1% - no matter how much faith religion may put on their existence. It will most likely never amount to 50% for or against such a notion.
Any Atheist or Agnostic can therefor feel justifiably on much more solid ground to doubt such supernatural creations and look at it as a product of the misguided human mind, than any religious follower using a faith based argument to oppose it.
The statement, science is just another religion is also often based on the suggestion of both requiring faith in order to justify ones belief in the respective end result.
While religions clearly require very little more than blind faith and an enormous amount of wishful hope to belief in such things as gods, a soul, the power of prayer, or the possibility for miracles, scientific research and discovery, on the other hand, requires a lot more specialized mental skills, solid educational training to apply appropriate reasoning and analytical thinking at a level, not even basically comprehended by most religious types who make these absurd statements
2 - The Universe and Nature was created by god
The reason for some god having to be the creator is often central to suggestions being advanced by Creationists and supporters of the Intelligent Design argument based on faith that only a god could possibly have had the ability to let the universe unfold before us in such remarkable vastness.
Believers of such faith based arguments have no problem believing in an almighty, omnipresent god while demonstrating a very limited understanding of the enormous natural potential contained in a more rational understanding of our given reality much better explained by more objective scientific explanations not based on wishful religious ideas.
It's not easy to see the difference in value between two abstract ideas, but here are some pointers as to where the greater value may be found and how to apply it in your own personal intellectual development:
- Why would you favor faith/belief over logic & reason?
- How do you formulate questions to invite intelligent replies which advance ideas?
- What kind of critical analysis have you applied recently?
- How do you advance scientific thought in your own daily life?
- Where do you draw a line between the ...
- possible and impossible, and
- rational and irrational
It would enjoy sharing some suggestions how to best apply ones cognitive capacity to develop a thought structure where learning how to advance ones intellect becomes the central tool to work with ones mental processes so as to strengthen ones ability to cope with reality better and advance human interaction into a more productive direction.
Positive thinking on it's own is not the answer. It runs into the limitations imposed by reality.