Online reading group and book discussion forum
  HOME ENTER FORUMS OUR BOOKS LINKS DONATE ADVERTISE CONTACT  
View unanswered posts | View active topics It is currently Sun Jul 12, 2020 2:28 am





Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 160 posts ] • Topic evaluate: Evaluations: 1, 5.00 on the average.Evaluations: 1, 5.00 on the average.Evaluations: 1, 5.00 on the average.Evaluations: 1, 5.00 on the average.Evaluations: 1, 5.00 on the average.  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 ... 11  Next
Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison) 
Author Message
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
One with Books

Silver Contributor

Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 2751
Thanks: 2298
Thanked: 731 times in 626 posts
Gender: None specified

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
bob wrote:
I have literally prayed a person to death.


holy shit!!! i better be careful in that freestyle thread :lol:



The following user would like to thank youkrst for this post:
geo
Wed Oct 14, 2015 12:37 am
Profile Email
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
Kindle Fanatic


Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 530
Thanks: 6
Thanked: 40 times in 37 posts
Gender: None specified

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
It is not the only "dangerous" or "harmful" act I have prayed and come true.

The full story is that the man was very old, suffering from nightmares from Japanese prison camps in the Philippines. He was heavily sedated. His wife asked that I pray for him to die. And if and when he did to wait for some time before alerting the nurses. I prayed, and in less than one hour, he died. It was very eerie to be in that room. All I can say was it seemed that spirits were flying around, but of course I could not see him. God's word says that Angels escort us to heaven. I don't know, but I would think it could have happened.

The other was I prayed a man of God who wronged me to be sick 4 times greater. He had to take 4 shots a day for weeks. He said it was the greatest pain of his life, and he suffered through cancer treatment. It is not my power, but God working in accordance to his will and direction.



Wed Oct 14, 2015 12:51 am
Profile
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
One with Books

Silver Contributor

Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 2751
Thanks: 2298
Thanked: 731 times in 626 posts
Gender: None specified

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
bob there is a difference between fantasy and reality

when a kid runs around in a cute superman costume imagining he can fly, that is so much fun.

but when a kid gets so into it he forgets its a fantasy and jumps off the roof only to discover there really is a difference well thats tragic.

when an adult loses the difference it can be really dangerous both for them and others.



Wed Oct 14, 2015 3:15 am
Profile Email
User avatar
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
OMG WTF LOL


Joined: May 2011
Posts: 1557
Thanks: 1730
Thanked: 780 times in 628 posts
Gender: None specified

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
geo wrote:
And then there's a growing movement of anti-vaxxers, those who believe in a connection between autism and vaccine shots, though studies consistently show no connection. This can be tragic in that diseases that were once more or less eradicated are making a comeback: measles, mumps, chicken pox. We're starting to lose herd immunity and so not only the children of anti-vaxxers are at risk.

I don't think anti-vaxxers are limited to those who try to connect vaccines to autism. But anyway this is an interesting case.

Why do people arrive at such ideas? Maybe it is just seeing patterns that aren't there, in this case abetted by the "live naturally" types who write books about all the dangers of the modern age. (And it turns out that brown rice and oatmeal really are good for you. Go figure.) Or maybe experts are too content to deliver the latest verdict when they know they are just going to shrug when it turns out the next study finds something different.

I am not sure I am really all that concerned about it. People irrationally oppose GMO food, and the result is more starvation than there needs to be, but the result is also that more resources go into insuring safety instead of charging ahead until some thalidomide type disaster really is cooked up.



The following user would like to thank Harry Marks for this post:
geo
Wed Oct 14, 2015 4:30 am
Profile Email
User avatar
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
OMG WTF LOL


Joined: May 2011
Posts: 1557
Thanks: 1730
Thanked: 780 times in 628 posts
Gender: None specified

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
youkrst wrote:
bob there is a difference between fantasy and reality

You seem pretty confident that fantasy is the case here, youkrst. Why not admit you don't know? Isn't that the skeptical position?



Wed Oct 14, 2015 7:34 am
Profile Email
User avatar
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
pets endangered by possible book avalanche

BookTalk.org Moderator
Platinum Contributor

Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 4533
Location: NC
Thanks: 1983
Thanked: 2046 times in 1530 posts
Gender: Male

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
Harry Marks wrote:
geo wrote:
Why do people arrive at such ideas? Maybe it is just seeing patterns that aren't there, in this case abetted by the "live naturally" types who write books about all the dangers of the modern age. (And it turns out that brown rice and oatmeal really are good for you. Go figure.) Or maybe experts are too content to deliver the latest verdict when they know they are just going to shrug when it turns out the next study finds something different.


There is a correlation of a kind in that autism behaviors start to become more evident about the same time that children are vaccinated. But correlation doesn't equal causation and, as such, the parents' fear that vaccines caused their child's autism is probably a false positive.

It's possible that science will someday find a connection between vaccines and autism, though it would likely be a small contributing factor at best. As evidence comes in, science can change. We see this especially with what foods that are supposedly good for you or bad for you. Turns out that whole milk isn't so bad after all. Turns out margarine is actually worse for you than butter, etc. A good way to articulate the autism-vaccine link is simply that all studies so far show there is no link. As such, using the best information available, and given the proven track record of vaccines, it seems best to follow the government's guidelines to get your child vaccinated, especially now that we are seeing breaches in herd immunity.

What makes this a concern now is that we are seeing a movement based on anti-government propaganda and fear-mongering Those who lack critical thinking skills are relying on the pseudo-authority of people like the Food Babe and Jenny McCarthy and Bill Maher, those who are propagating misinformation despite their complete lack of credibility in the realm of science.


_________________
-Geo
Question everything


The following user would like to thank geo for this post:
froglipz, Harry Marks
Wed Oct 14, 2015 9:51 am
Profile
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
Official Newbie!


Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 2
Thanks: 0
Thanked: 5 times in 2 posts
Gender: None specified

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
geo wrote:
What makes this a concern now is that we are seeing a movement based on anti-government propaganda and fear-mongering Those who lack critical thinking skills are relying on the pseudo-authority of people like the Food Babe and Jenny McCarthy and Bill Maher, those who are propagating misinformation despite their complete lack of credibility in the realm of science.


Interestingly, the anitvaccination movement takes the Authority Worship critical thinking error to the extreme. Any data that comes from the mainstream scientific community is automatically suspect and clearly wrong. So instead of a healthy skepticism, they end up following the people who tell them what they want to hear. I just find it interesting that it is apparently possible to misuse the critical thinking checklist Harrison gives us.

Back to the book: One thing I noticed about the dismissal of astrology, conspiracy theoires, and so forth is that Harrison could have taken the stance that dismissal of these theories stops us from asking more interesting questions. Instead, he takes the tack that to believe in conspiracy theories is to denigrate innate human abilities. I should note that I am in no way a conspiracy theorist. But thinking about the aliens-pyramid theory in particular, there are all kinds of interesting questions to ask. If humans built it, how did they do it? Do we have evidence that the ancient Egyptians understood physics well enough to move stone in that way? Why did they build the air vents, anyway? Saying "Aliens must have done it" is really not a very interesting answer, when there are so many questions to ask and things to find out instead.

Same with astrology. Why might there appear to be a correlation between personality types and birthdate? Different amounts of sunlight driving hormone production? Who knows? There was a bit in a Malcolm Gladwell book about good amateur hockey players being born in a specific month--turned out it was related to the elementary school entrance cutoff, so players with delayed school entrance were bigger and stronger when they made it on to their team, and tended to advance higher, if I'm recalling correctly. Saying "it's the stars' influence" in this example would stop you from finding out the real answer.

Maybe Harrison is going to go in this direction in later chapters--chapter 2 seems to be heading that way. But I would find that a more palatable stance than the somewhat condescending tone.



The following user would like to thank Kleiw for this post:
geo, Harry Marks, Robert Tulip, youkrst
Wed Oct 14, 2015 11:03 am
Profile Email
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
Kindle Fanatic


Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 530
Thanks: 6
Thanked: 40 times in 37 posts
Gender: None specified

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
Kkleiw, Tulip and others who stated that his writings were condescending and almost frustrating were an accurate assessment. I would give the chapter a D-

By page 29 I thought I was being forced to read the same thing over and over again. That children are not being taught critical thinking, "Why aren't schools doing this?" Why does he not recognize that parents do this? Johnny, clean yourself or you will have hygiene problems, don't stick your hand in the fire, go to bed to get proper rest, eat so that you will have energy, don't be mean to your sister because it is not the proper way to act???? This point seemed to be made more than I could stand hearing it. He acts like knowing the brain is a solving of all our problems. Why? Don't we constantly use our brains by the senses feeding information to it?

Example: He takes a condescending approach to those that believe in spirits, pg. 28, and 3/4 Americans believing in haunted houses, astrology and spirit channeling. Does he have proof that there are or aren't such things? Or is he frustrated that 1/4 don't believe in one of the three proposed options?

Early in the book he seems to often makes claims that have no or little means to actually be proven. Page 15 "Moreover, adopting an attitude of positive skepticism in daily life and striving to be consistent critical thinkers reduces cognitive errors, thereby increasing efficiency and safety."

I can be a defensive driver who watches out for the errors of others and still in one split second be wiped off the face of the earth by some driving error. Could that person not have been being a positive skeptical thinker and just made an error in judgment, thinking the lane was clear? That's why they call them accidents, instead of, lack of positive skeptical thinking.

Pg 18,19 are the last three quotes that show the extreme misguidedness in his logical judgments.

"Most people merely assume that their brains objectively collect data through the senses. I think it is humbling, in a good way, when people learn it's not really that simple. Knowledge of and an understanding of predolia, cherry-picking, confirmation bias, (and) the ways our brains fill in missing information are all useful in recognizing our limitations and in recognizing that there is a viable process of increasing objectivit - science."

"Believing that you are rational and your conscious self is in control of your perceptions and decisions is itself the greatest of all delusions." pg. 19

He just contradicted such a statement just 3 pages before under "What is good thinking"

"Good thinking is an umbrella term for understanding the human brain and using it in ways that enable one to make rational decisions, identify deception, and avoid or discard delusions as often as possible."

So on page 19 he said being rational and in control is a delusion, but on page 16 he says you are capable of rational decisions if you follow his 7 magical points. A total contradiction.

Humor me with the following example. If I am walking in the woods and smell burning wood, and walk a little farther and see wood embers flying in the trees, and walk even further and start to feel the rise of temperature in the air, and proceed onto find that I can see the smoke, but continue to find that flames are about to overtake me. He is trying to conclude that my senses. I know that I am about to be overtaken by a fire and die if I don't get to safety. His quote on 16 says this is impossible and my decisions are an illusion. NO IT IS A FIRE!



"Fortunately everyone is already a skeptic, and we are all critical thinkers." pg. 19

There is so much more, but I will try and keep it short to these points. D- is my final assessment. I hope he literally "turns the page."



Wed Oct 14, 2015 1:24 pm
Profile
User avatar
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
pets endangered by possible book avalanche

BookTalk.org Moderator
Platinum Contributor

Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 4533
Location: NC
Thanks: 1983
Thanked: 2046 times in 1530 posts
Gender: Male

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
I don't believe these two statements are contradictory at all. This is clear to me after reading this chapter.

Quote:
"Believing that you are rational and your conscious self is in control of your perceptions and decisions is itself the greatest of all delusions." pg. 19

Quote:
"Good thinking is an umbrella term for understanding the human brain and using it in ways that enable one to make rational decisions, identify deception, and avoid or discard delusions as often as possible."


To paraphrase, an awareness of the way our brains work and our inclination towards biased and faulty thinking can help us make more rational decisions and discard delusions at least some of the time. But to imagine that, even with this awareness, we can be in full control of our perceptions and thinking is absurd. Indeed, lacking intellectual humility (that Harrison discusses in this chapter) would almost certainly contribute to faulty thinking.

Imagine, if you will, identical twins who are inclined towards the same kinds of biases and thinking patterns. One of them studies critical thinking for a period of one year. The other does not. I think we can imagine the twin who has studied critical thinking might be more inclined to see some of his faulty thinking and take steps to correct it. No one would claim that he would be perfect. But he might be better than his twin at least some of the time.

As for teaching critical thinking in schools, I think it's a great idea. Especially learning how the brain works and tendency towards bias and tribalism. Clearly many parents out there don't have a solid foundation of critical thinking to teach their children.


_________________
-Geo
Question everything


The following user would like to thank geo for this post:
Harry Marks
Wed Oct 14, 2015 7:35 pm
Profile
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
One with Books

Silver Contributor

Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 2751
Thanks: 2298
Thanked: 731 times in 626 posts
Gender: None specified

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
Harry Marks wrote:
You seem pretty confident that fantasy is the case here, youkrst. Why not admit you don't know? Isn't that the skeptical position?


Harry, bob was saying

bob wrote:
I prayed a man of God who wronged me to be sick 4 times greater. He had to take 4 shots a day for weeks. He said it was the greatest pain of his life, and he suffered through cancer treatment. It is not my power, but God working in accordance to his will and direction.


the implication being that bob can intreat Yahweh and Yahweh will afflict those who trouble bob with great physical pain.

so i'm leaning more towards fantasy than reality on this one.

bob wrote:
I have literally prayed a person to death.


of course if my budgie dies today i will have to rethink my skepticism :)



Wed Oct 14, 2015 8:18 pm
Profile Email
User avatar
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
pets endangered by possible book avalanche

BookTalk.org Moderator
Platinum Contributor

Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 4533
Location: NC
Thanks: 1983
Thanked: 2046 times in 1530 posts
Gender: Male

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
comment deleted


_________________
-Geo
Question everything


Wed Oct 14, 2015 8:35 pm
Profile
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
Kindle Fanatic


Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 530
Thanks: 6
Thanked: 40 times in 37 posts
Gender: None specified

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
I thought we were talking about the book? You might want to know the circumstances of the prayer instead of jumping to conclusions.

A prophet prayed in the Old Testament and had two female bears maul 30 kids. This just for disrespecting him by making fun of him being bald. The point was to respect men of God.

Geo, you didn't read the quote. You added the words biases and faulty thinking are our inclined way of thinking. But he contradicted the two statements and many more.

I guess you found the chapter quite good? What was your assessment?



Wed Oct 14, 2015 8:58 pm
Profile
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
One with Books

Silver Contributor

Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 2751
Thanks: 2298
Thanked: 731 times in 626 posts
Gender: None specified

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
top man bob, you've got us back on topic :)

i wonder if we should fire chapter two up?

we can always keep going here if there are things in chapter one we want to discuss further.



Wed Oct 14, 2015 9:35 pm
Profile Email
User avatar
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
pets endangered by possible book avalanche

BookTalk.org Moderator
Platinum Contributor

Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 4533
Location: NC
Thanks: 1983
Thanked: 2046 times in 1530 posts
Gender: Male

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
brother bob wrote:
I thought we were talking about the book? You might want to know the circumstances of the prayer instead of jumping to conclusions.

A prophet prayed in the Old Testament and had two female bears maul 30 kids. This just for disrespecting him by making fun of him being bald. The point was to respect men of God.

Geo, you didn't read the quote. You added the words biases and faulty thinking are our inclined way of thinking. But he contradicted the two statements and many more.

I guess you found the chapter quite good? What was your assessment?


No, Harrison makes the meaning very clear throughout the chapter. He says in numerous places that we are all inconsistent in our thinking, but that an understanding of the human brain, with its biases and shortcuts, can help us think better. Indeed, that's the thesis of the book. You are taking these two sentences out of context.

Do you believe the prophet in the Old Testament actually prayed to have to have two female bears maul 30 kids? (Actually, wasn't it 42?) This is anecdotal, a story told much like the story of Tailypo, told in North American folklore, about a ravenous cat-like creature that can talk. But you don't believe that story, do you?

It's possible that a couple of bears did stumble into a village and kill some people a long time ago. That's plausible. And over time the story was embellished with additional elements that reflected the beliefs of that culture. The number of children killed was probably exaggerated, along with the additional detail that it was retaliation for making fun of a man of God. Stories are embellished all the time, which is why anecdotal evidence is considered the weakest sort of evidence by scholars.

from Ch. 1 . . .

Quote:
Skeptics and psychologists, of course, are very aware of the limits and fallibility of eyewitness and personal experience, since our perceptions and recollections are subject to many different sources of bias. This doesn't mean that our personal experiences are worthless, of course— just that they are not necessarily a reliable guide to what really happened.


So far I like the book a lot.


_________________
-Geo
Question everything


The following user would like to thank geo for this post:
youkrst
Thu Oct 15, 2015 8:11 am
Profile
Years of membershipYears of membershipYears of membershipYears of membership
Kindle Fanatic


Joined: Sep 2015
Posts: 530
Thanks: 6
Thanked: 40 times in 37 posts
Gender: None specified

Post Re: Ch. 1: The Case for Good Thinking ("Good Thinking" - by Guy P. Harrison)
The Bible is to be taken WORD for WORD - most is to be taken literal, historical, parables and some are similes.

Even Harrison concludes that one religion could be true.

Thanks for letting me know where you stood on the chapter.

Quote "Skeptics and psychologists, of course, are very aware of the limits and fallibility of eyewitness and personal experience, since our perceptions and recollections are subject to many different sources of bias. This doesn't mean that our personal experiences are worthless, of course— just that they are not necessarily a reliable guide to what really happened.'

As my illustration about being out in the woods and smelling, hearing, seeing or sensing a fire is REALITY. Senses are an important guide to cognitive processes. Knowing how my brain works has nothing to do with the reality to make a run for it.

The bears did not stumble onto a village. It was a prophet walking and 30 kids playing in the outlying area, and due to their disrespect we taught a lesson. Insulting a prophet was not the best thing to do during that time. Just because you do not understand that the Bible is almost always a literal book, that has been proven numerous times by archeology. They thought there was no Sodom and Gomorrah, the Israelites didn't cross the Red Sea, Jericho and much more. They even just found park of the book of Mark in an Egyptian sphinx that dated around 70 AD. All findings verify the historical facts found in the Bible

Good day!



Last edited by brother bob on Thu Oct 15, 2015 9:48 am, edited 1 time in total.



Thu Oct 15, 2015 9:43 am
Profile
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 160 posts ] • Topic evaluate: Evaluations: 1, 5.00 on the average.Evaluations: 1, 5.00 on the average.Evaluations: 1, 5.00 on the average.Evaluations: 1, 5.00 on the average.Evaluations: 1, 5.00 on the average.  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 ... 11  Next



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:

Announcements 

• Promote Your FICTION Book on BookTalk.org
Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:33 pm

• Promote Your NON-FICTION Book on BookTalk.org
Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:18 pm



Site Resources 
HELPFUL INFO:
Community Rules & Tips
Frequently Asked Questions
BBCode Explained
Author Interview Transcripts
Book Discussion Leaders

IDEAS FOR WHAT TO READ:
Bestsellers
Book Awards
• Book Reviews
• Online Books
• Team Picks
Newspaper Book Sections

WHERE TO BUY BOOKS:
• Coming Soon!

BEHIND THE BOOKS:
• Coming Soon!

PROMOTE YOUR BOOK!
Advertise on BookTalk.org
Promote your FICTION book
Promote your NON-FICTION book





BookTalk.org is a thriving book discussion forum, online reading group or book club. We read and talk about both fiction and non-fiction books as a community. Our forums are open to anyone in the world. While discussing books is our passion we also have active forums for talking about poetry, short stories, writing and authors. Our general discussion forum section includes forums for discussing science, religion, philosophy, politics, history, current events, arts, entertainment and more. We hope you join us!


Navigation 
MAIN NAVIGATION

HOMEFORUMSOUR BOOKSAUTHOR INTERVIEWSADVERTISELINKSFAQDONATETERMS OF USEPRIVACY POLICYSITEMAP

OTHER PAGES WORTH EXPLORING
Banned Book ListOnline Reading GroupTop 10 Atheism Books

Copyright © BookTalk.org 2002-2019. All rights reserved.
Display Pagerank