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Response to pablo_marmol (Reply #5)

Sun Jul 12, 2015, 07:41 PM

9. Do the last few paragraphs of the last article sound familiar? (emphasis added)

If you think that you are competent or right, if you don’t know that you don’t know and you won’t accept criticism as feedback, it’s unlikely that you will make the changes needed to become competent.

This problem affects more than learning. It is a factor in everything from voting to interpersonal relationships to deciding which peanut butter to buy. When we are unable to set aside our beliefs and opinions, unable to accept the possibility that those beliefs are wrong, we are unable to objectively evaluate arguments and evidence. When we are unable to be objective, we are unable to be rational. And when we are unable to be rational, we risk forming beliefs and making choices which do not lead us to our goals.

Open-mindedness, humility, and flexibility are cornerstones of rationality. Science–the best means of acquiring knowledge–is humble, open, and flexible for that reason. You may be reasonably certain of a conclusion, but the moment you close the door on the possibility that you are wrong, you become irrational.

So being smart is not enough. Being smart and educated is not enough. We must be smart, educated, curious, and open-minded, and this last one is perhaps the most important of them all.

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Arrow 9 replies Author Time Post
Nuclear Unicorn Jul 2015 OP
Shamash Jul 2015 #1
tularetom Jul 2015 #2
DonP Jul 2015 #3
pablo_marmol Jul 2015 #6
Eleanors38 Jul 2015 #4
pablo_marmol Jul 2015 #5
Shamash Jul 2015 #7
pablo_marmol Jul 2015 #8
LineLineNew Reply Do the last few paragraphs of the last article sound familiar? (emphasis added)
pablo_marmol Jul 2015 #9
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