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Free thinking, skepticism and dogmatism

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  • Free thinking, skepticism and dogmatism



    It is appalling to see how badly used some terms are, particularly during debates involving emotional people. A look at the comments about Mark's review for the Vegetarian Myth is a good example of it. People calling each other dogmatic and closed minded all over the place.


    Here are some definitions:


    Free thought:


    [quote]

    Freethought holds that individuals should neither accept nor reject ideas proposed as truth without recourse to knowledge and reason. Thus, freethinkers strive to build their opinions on the basis of facts, scientific inquiry, and logical principles, independent of any logical fallacies or the intellectually-limiting effects of authority, cognitive bias, conventional wisdom, popular culture, prejudice, sectarianism, tradition, urban legend, and all other dogmatic or otherwise fallacious principles.
    </blockquote>




    http://tinyurl.com/ybyuccp


    Skepticism:


    [quote]

    Skepticism is an approach to accepting, rejecting, or suspending judgment on new information that requires the new information to be well supported by argument or evidence.[3] Individuals who proclaim to have a skeptical outlook are frequently called skeptics, often without regard to whether it is philosophical skepticism or empirical skepticism that they profess.[4]
    </blockquote>




    http://tinyurl.com/yd3v2m


    Dogmatism:


    [quote]

    Dogma is the established belief or doctrine held by a religion, ideology or any kind of organization: it is authoritative and not to be disputed, doubted or diverged from.
    </blockquote>




    http://tinyurl.com/yc9xtx9


    I think it is important to add that the difference between a fake and a real skeptic is a strong and genuine commitment to finding the truth, regardless of how uncomfortable or counter-intuitive it might be.


    A honest pursuit of the truth demands a genuine commitment to weight evidence for or against a given position, deciding accordingly, and remaining open to new evidence that might merit a re-evaluation of the previously addressed claim.


    Also, there is a big difference between intelligently questioning an idea, or just throwing random ideas in hope of validating a position commonly seen as silly or false. This is the case with many creationist and evolution "skeptics", for example.


    And finally, it is clear to me that not all opinions are "born equal". Every is entitled to an opinion, but that does not mean that all opinions are worthy of respect.


    Comments?

    “Every saint has a past and every sinner has a future.” -Oscar Wilde
    "The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." -George Bernard Shaw
    "The trouble with jogging is that the ice falls out of your glass." -Martin Mull

  • #2
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    Good post. Gotta do your homework or it ends up who yells the loudest.

    Comment


    • #3
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      Great post, SS. Not to water-down your thoughts or treat them with less than the respect that they deserve, but I think this would qualify as an example of what we most want to avoid:


      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=teMlv3ripSM


      "I could be arguing in my spare time..."

      Comment


      • #4
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        Good one Geoff! Sometime things get a little deep here, its nice to see some humor!

        Comment


        • #5
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          People need to understand how cognitive dissonance can make it almost impossible to accept new ideas. That is the cause of the problems people have with accepting new, contrary ideas.


          We all need to be aware that what we hold at &#39;truth&#39; is not necessarily &#39;fact&#39;.


          A good read is - "Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts" Carol Tavris and Elliot Aronson

          The "Seven Deadly Sins"

          • Grains (wheat/rice/oats etc) . . . . . • Dairy (milk/yogurt/butter/cheese etc) . . . . .• Nightshades (peppers/tomato/eggplant etc)
          • Tubers (potato/arrowroot etc) . . . • Modernly palatable (cashews/olives etc) . . . • Refined foods (salt/sugars etc )
          • Legumes (soy/beans/peas etc)

          Comment


          • #6
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            lol, monty python is the best.

            Comment


            • #7
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              Thanks, SerialSinner - I find definitions help people with their own &#39;free thought&#39;..it&#39;s become exceptionally helpful for me in many circumstances lately...I work in a bookstore & one definition I like to inform people of is &#39;rogue&#39;...

              Comment


              • #8
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                what is rogue? I honestly am not sure of the exact definition.

                Comment


                • #9
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                  Well, maybe you don&#39;t know, but in the book world & political world it&#39;s a splash - a certain lass from Alaska published her autobiography & rather boastingly applies the term &#39;rogue&#39; to herself...anyway:


                  Definition for rogue

                  - somebody dishonest: an unscrupulous or dishonest person, especially somebody who is also likable

                  - somebody mischievous: a mischievously playful person, especially a naughty child

                  - dangerous solitary animal: a vicious or uncontrolled animal that lives apart from the rest of its herd or group

                  Encarta World English Dictionary


                  I don&#39;t want to ruffle feathers - it&#39;s just lately I have been using definitions a lot to dispell idiocy - it&#39;s amazing how people throw around words when they don&#39;t know what they mean!

                  Comment


                  • #10
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                    She must mean this definition:


                    - dangerous solitary animal: a vicious or uncontrolled animal that lives apart from the rest of its herd or group

                    Comment


                    • #11
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                      Perhaps - but none flattering!!


                      Anyway - this is a nutrition forum not political - so, that&#39;s it for me! Sorry if anyone&#39;s &#39;dogma&#39; is irked!


                      ok...really...




                      Comment


                      • #12
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                        SS, you recently questioned if your abilities in English were apparent because English isn&#39;t your native tongue.


                        Well, sir, you should be teaching grammar and logic to native speakers!


                        I think it was the politician Daniel Moynihan who said, "You are entitled to your own opinions. But you are not entitled to your own facts."


                        The less well educated (and one CAN be well self-educated, the autodidact)look for easy answers and often evaluate the possibilities based on either emotional response or "authority." It is HARD to search for fact and truth, knowing full well that we may have inadequate data to arrive at perfect conclusions. And it is doubly hard when the "truth" contradicts what one "knows."


                        A lot of posters here have difficulty with some of my positions and attitudes. It is true, I do not suffer fools gladly. And when I see unsupportable statements about natural food dogma like raw milk ("the magic of"), sea salt, etc., yes, my responses are often blunt. But a few times I was pointed out that I was in error about something WITH DATA and I immediately recanted and was grateful for the upbraiding.


                        That&#39;s The Scientific Method and Free Thought (which was a named movement, mostly of religious bent, Abe Lincoln was an adherent.)

                        Comment


                        • #13
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                          This whole thread is rogue.

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                          • #14
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                            Regardless of what one might think about the "rogue" author in question, some context might be helpful here. As I recall the author in question did not first self-apply the word "rogue". I believe that in the days leading up to the 2008 election several media outlets reported that anonymous campaign staffers were using the word "rogue" to describe the author&#39;s actions and statements that were inconsistent with the campaign&#39;s "official" positions. In that context seizing upon the term "rogue" as the title of her book may well have been her jesting attempt to tweak the very people that first applied the term to her.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              1



                              Hmm - I thought McCain was considered a &#39;rogue&#39; & then when Palin came on the ticket it was applied to her as well, remember interviews & speeches where she seemed &#39;proud&#39; of it. Anyway - the title & cover is like a big joke, I suppose...&#39;going rogue: an american life&#39; with her looking as clean-cut as apple pie with a very prominent flag lapel pin, smiling off into the sky - I don&#39;t know - I find it funny, reminds me of Colbert&#39;s &#39;I am America & so can you&#39;! I have giggle fits whenever I see it - could just be weirdo me, I guess!

                              Maybe she is poking fun at herself, and preconceptions - but, she doesn&#39;t seem like the sort to easily laugh at herself....witness her biography & interviews...but, anyway....I regret mentioning her now & hope this thread doesn&#39;t turn ugly! So, that&#39;s my last word of politics....


                              Serial Sinner - you do indeed have a better grasp of english that most of us native english speakers.... Thanks for the post!

                              Comment

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