10 ways to catch errors in thinking

bias privilege comic

I have been reading about bias in thinking and it occurred to me that it was too much to try to remember all of those situational biases. So I thought it would help to formulate some general guidelines to make sure I didn’t fall into any errors.

  1. bias privilege comicIs this true if the situation was reversed? Things like equality and justice become easy to determine if you apply the same rules in an opposite way. The biggest thing is the way that others want to judge others they don’t want to be used to judge themselves. For example, people who talk about “family values” and then lie and deceive and do the behavior that they condemn in others.
  2. Has any part of it been assumed to be a foundation of thought? In the past people thought the earth was the center of the universe because it was taught that the earth was the center of everything. Challenging assumption is difficult because often we become conditioned to believe in the way that assumes something is true. If something is an assumption, it probably is something that has no good evidence. For example, Dark Matter is an assumption, because there is no evidence beyond a shadow of a doubt it is true.
  3. Something is not true because it is convenient. Some people claim God exists because he must. I find this a little strange. Regardless of the truth of this, things are not true because we need them to be true. Our perception isn’t reality, and our rules of logic don’t apply to other dimensions. You only need to study quantum behavior to see the evidence of this. So believing something “has” to be, is a folly of the first order. It presupposes that the universe is understandable to our limited intellect.
  4. Does believing this requires you to believe in other things? Almost everything requires one to believe in more than just that thought. People want to pick their beliefs without any realization of the inconsistency of their beliefs. Isn’t it funny how many people don’t believe in the death penalty but are ok with drinking and driving or smoking? People don’t follow through with the fact that if they choose to believe in something, they can’t just apply it selectively. They have to apply it consistently.
  5. Does the person asking you to believe something stand to benefit financially from it? Religions may do a great deal of good, but as long as they financially benefit they are suspect. If truth is natural, unavoidable, and perceivable then why do you need money for it? Money has taken the new place of the sword. In the old days, it was either “Convert or die”. Now it is believed mainstream thought become a social outcast. Anytime that something becomes a business any truth that was in it dies. You can’t sell the truth. The most you can do is help lead people to it.
  6. Is the person someone who believes in black-and-white thinking? Seeing things as either/or situations is an easy way to think. Dualistic thinking can be hard to perceive but the results certainly aren’t. It was something that took time to understand in myself. The idea that things are able to be separate seems logically true but isn’t. It takes therapy and time to resolve this.
  7. Does this belief require the nonconscious mind to accept it or the inability to analyze it? I once had a well-meaning teacher give me the Mormon (LDS) bible and ask me to read a certain chapter and pray. She said that God would help “open my heart”. Well, I tried that and didn’t get any messages. If the evidence of something is true is something that depends on nothing more than indigestion well that isn’t going to be convincing. If you find yourself deciding something and you can’t put your finger on it, it’s probably not true but just what you emotionally want to do.
  8. Does the idea assume that this reality is the only one? Religious people like to say there is a higher reality than what we can perceive. Scientific people say there are mathematically and scientifically veritable dimensions that exist besides this one. So when someone says that this is the only reality there is, they are nuts.
  9. Is the belief one that is repeated often? Is it any surprise that the things that are most repeated like commercials are things that are not true? In fact, you should examine anything that is repeated more. This goes back to Rule #5. The most pervasive lies are the ones that we want to be true because it makes us feel good as a species. We want to believe that we are compassionate and wise, yet thousands of people starve to death every day because of a lack of food, water, or medicine. How compassionate are we when we place having shiny things over the well-being of everyone?
  10. If this hurts a person it will help society. Nothing can help society if it hurts a person. The lie that we see is that personal pleasure doesn’t harm society and ourselves. There is a point where our happiness is maxed out, and seeking to pass that point repeatedly and without enjoyment is not only irresponsible but a waste of time and energy. Life is experiencing many things, not being stuck on a treadmill of the same stimulation over and over.
See also  Vietnam Veterans of America cleaned up today in my neighborhood