OF THE WEEK
(from A Toolbox for you Mind)
A new one every Sunday morning
C. Happy Sounds
Adventure of the Week
KEEP YOUR BRAIN WELL WASHED AND STUFFED
W. C. Fields
If you can’t dazzle them with brilliance,
baffle them with bull.
1. Play the ad hominem and genetic fallacy cards---two cheap ways to avoid ever having to seriously consider the merits of an opposing argument. Just throw nasty names to shame and bully, or dismiss the argument by demonizing the source.
2. Create an abominable straw man. Simple, and another cheap shot. Argue vigorously against an easily countered argument the other side never made.
3. Cherry pick, exaggerate, minimize. Only present evidence that supports your position, and exaggerate its relevance and validity. Minimize the relevance and validity of evidence presented by the other side, and be sure and call them a bunch of cherry pickers.
4. Interrupt when the other side is making a good point or on a roll. Ask them to define a word they just used, or please repeat what they just said. Drop a pencil on the floor. Start coughing. Trigger your cell phone. Anything to interrupt their flow.
5. Double Standard. Couldn’t be simpler. You demand the other side do none of the above. You do them all.
Unless you and your friends are most unusual, when together you happily massage and reinforce each other’s trigger words, talking points and narratives.
You also practice counter trigger words, talking points and narratives to use when you argue with those ugly, stupid mutts the other side of the lake.
Almost all arguments are just back and forth volleys of well programmed words. Well, that’s a whole lot better than volleys of bullets, but for humans bullets are never far away.
A strong belief in the validity of their point of view is all most people have. There is usually only modest knowledge of supportive and very little knowledge of non-supportive data and logic. This causes defensiveness, arrogance, and intolerance, especially when confronted with a well-presented counter argument.
He who knows only his own side of the case knows little of that. His reasons may be good, and no one may have been able to refute them. But if he is equally unable to refute the reasons on the opposite side, if he does not so much as know what they are, he has no ground for preferring either opinion
… Nor is it enough that he should hear the opinions of adversaries from his own teachers, accompanied by what they offer as refutations. He must be able to hear them from persons who actually believe them … he must know them in their most plausible and persuasive form.
John Stuart Mill
Rational discussion is useful only when there is a significant base of shared assumptions.
WISDOM & FOLLY
Greatness is a transitory experience. It is never consistent. It depends in part upon the myth-making imagination of humankind. The person who experiences greatness must have a feeling for the myth he is in. He must reflect what is projected upon him.
And he must have a strong sense of the sardonic. This is what uncouples him from belief in his own pretensions. The sardonic is all that permits him to move within himself. Without this quality, even occasional greatness will destroy a man.
Success is dangerous. One begins to copy oneself, and to copy oneself is more dangerous than to copy others. It leads to sterility.
Words, words, words! They shut one off from the universe. Three quarters of the time one's never in contact with things, only with the beastly words that stand for them.
True reality is what we experience when all the perception is set aside.
For instance, when we go to Yellowstone National Park and we are looking at the beautiful mountain covered with snow and we are in awe of its beauty, in that instance we are experiencing reality. We are not thinking about anything but rather are just experiencing.
When we start to put some thought to our experience, that is when it becomes perception rather than true reality. That is when the perception becomes skewed because we are relating our past experiences to an interpretation of the present experience.
If you are perceptive and courageous
go see if you Nourish or Poison.