I am certainly skeptical of some of the views expressed on this blog. I am neither polyamorous or steeped in the glamor of the fashion industry. I am politically conservative on not only economic but social issues as well, I believe that religion has value that science cannot replace, I hesitate to equate what’s natural with what’s normative, and as a business consultant I spend most of my time in airports and board rooms. Obviously, my beliefs and lifestyle aren’t exactly aligned with the themes of this blog. Yet, Polyglamorous and I have a couple of fundamental beliefs in common. We believe that constant questioning is critical to human progress and that young people today aren't doing enough of it.Read More
I look back fondly on an old teacher of mine. The most influential thing he said to me was after we had an argument about strength and females. I was 15 at the time, I said men were stronger than women. He said he knew women who were stronger than him. I said if we lined up every man and every woman– if we paired the strongest man to the strongest woman- down the line- each man would be stronger.
He said- you don't know as much as you think you know.Read More
The following excerpt has been reproduced word-to-word from Michael Shermer’s book Why People Believe Weird Things. I do not hold copyright to this excerpt. It has been reproduced for educational outreach, without the author’s consent. The copyright is held by the author “Michael Shermer” and the publishers:Read More
I wanted to take a moment to share some excerpts from David Deutsch's The Beginning of Infinity (a New York Times bestseller). This is one of my favorite books. I think it has some flaws, but in it David Deutsch eloquently presents a lot of essential ideas better than anywhere else I've encountered.
In it, he defines bad philosophy as "philosophy that is not merely false, but actively prevents the growth of other knowledge."
"Error is the normal state of our knowledge, and is no disgrace. There is nothing bad about false philosophy. Problems are inevitable, but they can be solved by imaginative, critical thought that seeks good explanations. That is good philosophy, and good science, both of which have always existed in some measure. For instance, children have always learned language by making, criticizing, and testing conjectures about the connection between words and reality."
"Bad philosophy has always existed too. For instance, children have always been told, "Because I say so." Although that is not always intended as a philosophical position, it is worth analyzing it as one, for in four simple words it contains remarkably many themes of false and bad philosophy. First, it is a perfect example of a bad explanation: it could be used to 'explain' anything. Second, one way it achieves that status is by addressing only the form of the question and not the substance: it is about who said something, not what they said. That is the opposite of truth-seeking. Third, it reinterprets a request for true explanation (why should something-or-other be as it is?) as a request for justification (what entitles you to assert that it is so?)... Fourth, it confuses the nonexistent authority for ideas with human authority (power) – a much-travelled path in bad political philosophy. And fifth, it claims by this means to stand outside the jurisdiction of normal criticism."
"One currently influential philosophical movement goes under various names such as postmodernism, deconstructionism and structuralism depending on historical details that are unimportant here. It claims that because all ideas, including scientific theories, are conjectural and impossible to justify, they are essentially arbitrary: they are no more than stories, known in this context as 'narratives'. Mixing extreme cultural relativism with other forms of anti-realism, it regards objective truth and falsity, as well as reality and knowledge of reality, as mere conventional forms of words that stand for an idea's being endorsed by a designated group of people such as an elite or consensus, or by a fashion or other arbitrary authority."
"Elegance is a heuristic guide to truth." There is a "need to create objective knowledge to allow different people to communicate."
Humans are the alpha animal on the planet, and in the known universe. As a metaphor, the jungle of life is a place we all live in. I am a #jungler.
It is natural to live in the jungle.
What is natural? Is it something that exists in and is caused by nature, or is it something that is not man made? If it is the latter, then everything we enjoy is not natural.Read More
Welcome to our blog!
For the time being, we will be starting this blog as two people, but may invite guest writers to contribute in the future.
We will be writing about what we read, what we like, what we think, and what we do.
Who are we?Read More