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Dude
SFN Die Hard

USA
6891 Posts

Posted - 04/04/2011 :  13:09:27  Show Profile Send Dude a Private Message  Reply with Quote
There have been some new posters lately who don't seem to have any grasp of this skill, and at least one veteran poster who has decided to use "critical thinking" as a derogatory term (I'd still pay money to see the specific mathematics that allows anyone to assign a probability greater than zero to the existence of gravity fairies).

It seems like this kind of ignorance should be a specific target for the SFN, a chance to explain what is meant by the term and what the skill can do for you.

I thought about engaging some directly in other threads but soon realized that would be futile, those involved would have felt like they were being singled out and insulted, it would only have aggravated already infected threads.

Then I thought about starting a thread with the intent of explaining what critical thinking is and how it is used by most people here. I kicked that idea to the curb as well. While there is a core of similarity to the process I think we all may apply it differently.

My next thought was that it might be an interesting conversation if the topic were about getting people to share what they think critical thinking is and how they use it. I suspect there will be a great deal of similarity among the regular SFN posters, but there will also be enough variance to make it a learning experience as well.

So I guess I'll go first, my take on critical thinking-

Critical thinking is a tool to solve problems, find answers, and assign truth values to propositions. I think most people use it to some degree without ever thinking about it or even being aware they are doing it. Its that thing in your mind, when presented with a frozen metal handrail in winter, that tells you not to stick your tongue on it because the last time it caused you a good deal of pain. Its that thing that tells you it is a good idea to look over your shoulder, check your mirrors, and make sure the lane is clear before you change lanes on a road. In essence it is a decision making process with inductive (and sometimes deductive) reasoning, informed by experience. Most people do it without thinking about it when the topics are simple and have enough supporting evidence, and lack of misinformation, that the conclusions become nearly self evident.

The real value of this skill only becomes apparent when you move beyond that initial intuitive use and examine the decision making process in detail. When you learn to recognize formal and informal logical fallacies in argument, understand induction and deduction, how to evaluate evidence, and how to shape a sound and valid argument yourself. You don't need to go read The Organon or enroll in a college course to pick this up either. Today all the info you need to learn this skill is available on the internet, for free.

There is value to learning this skill that goes beyond arguing on the internet as well, like being able to effectively evaluate the truth claims of non experts, like being able to know when a person is intentionally using logical fallacy to manipulate you, like being able to honestly evaluate the claims made by people selling products, and so on. The list of potential uses is very long. When properly applied some of your conclusions can be counter intuitive as well, which means you might never have reached them without applying the skill of critical thinking.

Another issue that directly relates to this, and has been thrown around recently in a few threads, is the concept of absolutes. I am aware that there are several philosophical positions out there on the idea of absolutes, and that the position taken by some here (myself included) may not be self evidently clear to others based on what we post alone. My thinking on absolutes, reached through the application of critical thinking, is this: If there are any universal absolutes I am unaware of them. Context specific absolutes, on the other hand, are a dime a dozen.

There was a discussion here a few years ago that I'll reference, Ricky was insisting that nothing was impossible. I challenged him to poop out a fully functional SUV. Within the specific context, today, of human biology and the human digestive tract, I am still comfortable saying that it is absolutely impossible for Ricky to start up a vehicle manufacturing shop in his colon. Might we someday engineer ourselves into biological vehicle assembly shops? Doesn't seem likely from a purely practical view, but in the universal context I can't absolutely rule it out.

Another ongoing example: Are any UFOs/UAPs actually extra terrestrial in nature? I don't know, but there is no evidence to suggest that they are.

It might also be useful, or maybe even necessary, to examine positions on epistemic justification. Evidentialism with a twist of pragmatism is probably the best way to describe my position on this one. Conclusions must, when possible, be supported by valid evidence before assigning then a truth value. If you have to assign a truth value in the absence of evidence then you are only justified if the alternative to your conclusion is a catastrophic failure of your ability to reach meaningful conclusions. For example, the old bit about external vs internal reality. Pragmatically we have to assume that reality is actually real and that we are capable of detecting and interacting with it because the only other alternative is solipsism.


So.

I'll share a few definitions of critical thinking from others too.

I'm particularly fond of this one:
“The ability to think critically, as conceived in this volume, involves three things: ( 1 ) an attitude of being disposed to consider in a thoughtful way the problems and subjects that come within the range of one's experiences, (2) knowledge of the methods of logical inquiry and reasoning, and (3) some skill in applying those methods.

Critical thinking calls for a persistent effort to examine any belief or supposed form of knowledge in the light of the evidence that supports it and the further conclusions to which it tends. It also generally requires ability to recognize problems, to find workable means for meeting those problems, to gather and marshal pertinent information, to recognize unstated assumptions and values, to comprehend and use language with accuracy, clarity, and discrimination, to interpret data, to appraise evidence and evaluate arguments, to recognize the existence (or non-existence) of logical relationships between propositions, to draw warranted conclusions and generalizations, to put to test the conclusions and generalizations at which one arrives, to reconstruct one's patterns of beliefs on the basis of wider experience, and to render accurate judgments about specific things and qualities in everyday life.

(Edward M. Glaser, An Experiment in the Development of Critical Thinking, Teacher’s College, Columbia University, 1941).

(bolding mine)

That is better written than my amateurish effort to define critical thinking and it hits all the major points with just two sentences. It almost exactly reflects what I think critical thinking is and the uses it is intended for.

So don't leave me hanging here people, please post up your personal take on critical thinking and how it should be applied!


Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"god :: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument." - G. Carlin

Hope, n.
The handmaiden of desperation; the opiate of despair; the illegible signpost on the road to perdition. ~~ da filth

alienist
Skeptic Friend

USA
210 Posts

Posted - 04/04/2011 :  18:05:34   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send alienist a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Oooh! I was thinking of starting a thread on just this topic. I came across a quote from Robert T. Carroll (from Skeptic Dictionary):

The goal of critical thinking is to arrive at the most reasonable beliefs and take the most reasonable actions. We have evolved, however, not to seek the truth, but to survive and reproduce. Critical thinking is an unnatural act. By nature, we're driven to confirm and defend our current beliefs, even to the point of irrationality. We are prone to reject evidence that conflicts with our beliefs and to attack those who offer such evidence.

I was wondering how other people identify when they are acting on their own biases.

The only normal people are the ones you don't know very well! - Joe Ancis
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sailingsoul
SFN Addict

2830 Posts

Posted - 04/04/2011 :  18:06:22   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send sailingsoul a Private Message  Reply with Quote
In an effort not to "leave you hanging" my thoughts are. I care not to debate others views or my own, of what critical thinking is defined as. It seems to me, like trying to herd cats which cannot happen, getting the likes of us here ( atheists, agnostics, theists, Telepathic persons, UFO abductees, what have you) to concur on what that definition is, has the same chance of happening as heading cats.

That said the definition that Dude is particularly fond of, works quit well for me too.
Theist consider themselves critical thinkers, Atheist should find that laughable. A consensus on this matter is not possible between them, to pick two possible commenters.
Am I or is anyone here utilizing critical thinking in their daily lives??? I'm sure we all or most think we do, about ourselves. Surely being 100% correct all the time is not likely. How could anyone of us test that? One method I use on myself annually is when I hear a particular story that triggers my Bullshit alarms and it's April fool's day, I am assured that some of my brain is still working when I hear a truly crazy story and it's April fool day.
Did anyone catch the media, a couple days ago on April 1, delivering an April Fool's Days story before they came clean? SS

There are only two types of religious people, the deceivers and the deceived. SS
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26002 Posts

Posted - 04/04/2011 :  18:34:52   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by sailingsoul

One method I use on myself annually is when I hear a particular story that triggers my Bullshit alarms and it's April fool's day, I am assured that some of my brain is still working when I hear a truly crazy story and it's April fool day.
So last Friday I got back to my desk at work after discussing some stuff with other people in the office for 20 minutes, and a guy who sits near me told me that my phone had been ringing off the hook. So I looked through the recent-caller list on the phone, and found that the most-recent call was from home. So I called. My wife answered, and with a bit of a sniffle in her voice, said, "I slipped on the stairs, and I don't know whether my ankle is broken or just badly sprained, but you need to come home and take me to the ER."

My mind ran a million miles an hour, and I knew that the next words out of my mouth could get me in a world of trouble, but I couldn't not ask, "um... April Fools?"

My wife's reaction? "Ohgoddammit! How did you know?"

I knew because all of her attempts at April Fools pranks are of the same style. It's always a story about how she's allegedly hurt herself. Since she doesn't always have the grace of a dancer, it's a plausible story, but for a real accident to coincide with April 1 is just a bit too suspicious. She's gotta get a new shtick.

(She was actually more pissed off about having fallen for her mother's prank about her ne'er-do-well brother becoming a father.)
Did anyone catch the media, a couple days ago on April 1, delivering an April Fool's Days story before they came clean?
NPR runs an April Fool's story every year. I missed it this year. A couple of years ago they did a story about it getting so cold in Vermont that the syrup was freezing inside the maple trees and making them explode. The sound-effects were great.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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Dude
SFN Die Hard

USA
6891 Posts

Posted - 04/04/2011 :  19:46:17   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Dude a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by sailingsoul

In an effort not to "leave you hanging" my thoughts are. I care not to debate others views or my own, of what critical thinking is defined as. It seems to me, like trying to herd cats which cannot happen, getting the likes of us here ( atheists, agnostics, theists, Telepathic persons, UFO abductees, what have you) to concur on what that definition is, has the same chance of happening as heading cats.

That said the definition that Dude is particularly fond of, works quit well for me too.
Theist consider themselves critical thinkers, Atheist should find that laughable. A consensus on this matter is not possible between them, to pick two possible commenters.
Am I or is anyone here utilizing critical thinking in their daily lives??? I'm sure we all or most think we do, about ourselves. Surely being 100% correct all the time is not likely. How could anyone of us test that? One method I use on myself annually is when I hear a particular story that triggers my Bullshit alarms and it's April fool's day, I am assured that some of my brain is still working when I hear a truly crazy story and it's April fool day.
Did anyone catch the media, a couple days ago on April 1, delivering an April Fool's Days story before they came clean? SS


I also do not think there is ever going to be complete agreement on this, but that wasn't what I was looking for. More of how individuals interpret and apply critical thinking is where I'd like this to head. There is a core set of logical rules to it, and everyone more or less follows them, but the different ways we see them and use them is probably very interesting, especially in a microcosm like a forum dedicated to the subject.

Best April Fool's gag I hear this year- FL legislature just passed a new speed enforcement law. It will use the GPS in your cell phone to determine your position and velocity, and if you are speeding they will just add the ticket to your phone bill!

I had people trying to tell me this story as late as yesterday (the 3rd). Critical thinking is sadly lacking in most people, even though it is clearly in your best interest to learn the skill.


Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"god :: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument." - G. Carlin

Hope, n.
The handmaiden of desperation; the opiate of despair; the illegible signpost on the road to perdition. ~~ da filth
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H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 04/04/2011 :  19:51:38   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Dave W.
NPR runs an April Fool's story every year. I missed it this year. A couple of years ago they did a story about it getting so cold in Vermont that the syrup was freezing inside the maple trees and making them explode. The sound-effects were great.
This didn't quite make sense to me at first because cold can freeze the sap in trees and make them explode. What would be funny about telling something that could happen but didn't? That would just be a lie. A good April's Fool joke makes an absurd idea sound believable, like the Swiss spaghetti harvest.

But when double-checking that I had my facts right about exploding trees on Wikipedia, I found that they actually mention the NPR April Fool's Day hoax:
Exploding trees were the subject of a 2005 April Fools' Day hoax covered by National Public Radio, stating that maple trees in New England had been exploding due to a failure to collect their sap, causing pressure to build from the inside.
Ah. So that makes more sense as an April Fool's gag. But thanks for mentioning this story Dave, as I had never heard of it and wouldn't have looked it up otherwise. I wonder, though, does my questioning of your recounting of the hoax count as an example of critical thinking?


"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
Edited by - H. Humbert on 04/04/2011 19:55:45
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sailingsoul
SFN Addict

2830 Posts

Posted - 04/04/2011 :  20:58:36   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send sailingsoul a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I was listening to NPR this year and there was a show they did, out of a NYC, NPR station. The whole show was was about a plan, that the "Holland Tunnel" was to be closed to motor vehicles and converted to a Bicycle route between the Manhattan and New Jersey. The Lincoln Tunnel would pick up all the motor traffic. It was a whole show and went on for a half hour. I didn't actually know that it was April 1, as I never wear a watch and the exact day rarely matters to me so I don't often keep track of every day like employees need to. At the start of the show I was thinking what kind of (BS) story is this? As I'm from NYC and know how heavy day traffic is every day. About 5 minutes in I thought to myself "Is today 4/1?" Checking my phone assured me it was a prank story. Then I just enjoyed the rest of the show with callers and all. Some callers played along and added to it, others were saying it's a bad idea, not catching on.

More to the topic of the thread, Anyone here familiar with Brian Dunning's work on Skeptoid.com? He also put out "Here Be Dragons" a guide on critical thinking, about 40 minutes long. Covering a bit of the basics involved. Anyone not familiar with him might want to check out the links, dealing with critical thinking, ect. SS

There are only two types of religious people, the deceivers and the deceived. SS
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26002 Posts

Posted - 04/04/2011 :  21:33:50   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by H. Humbert

I wonder, though, does my questioning of your recounting of the hoax count as an example of critical thinking?
Does to me. I was relying on memory, which clearly was wrong. Had it been something of more consequence than an example of a media-driven April Fool's gag, I would have checked it myself. It is, after all, extraordinary claims which require extraordinary evidence, and not the pedestrian ones like NPR doing a gag on exploding trees.

And this segues back into what Dude is talking about. There are plenty of times in day-to-day life that's it's quite alright to not don one's critical-thinking cap. If my coworker announces to the room that he's got to go pee, I'm unlikely to ask for evidence (especially for fear of getting said evidence all over my clothes and desk). CT is more aptly applied to subjects with consequences. It's overkill to consciously apply it to the mundane (although I think Dude is spot-on when he says that lots of people apply at least some CT without thinking about it). Sometimes the mundane becomes extraordinary (like if my coworker claims to need to pee ten times in an hour), and then we can switch back into "full on" CT mode again.

One guy I've worked with for about a year now is pretty conservative, and a couple/few times a week will say something... questionable. Not the typical Fox-News sound-bite kind of thing, which is usually easily disproved, but something that sounds reasonable on its face but just doesn't seem true. So I'll often respond with "where'd you hear that?" and he'll reply that he read it on some news web site somewhere. Not that he read it on CNN.com (for example), but literally that he "read it on some news site somewhere." It's at that point where the conversation stops, because he's been unwilling to go re-find whatever it was he read, and I'm unwilling to believe him because he says so.

Contrast that with another fairly conservative guy I've been working with for 11 years. If he's got something he wants to tell me that he doesn't think I'll believe, he won't even mention it anymore until he can give me at least one hard-copy of an article on the subject, or email me a link. Even then, I'll listen to him explain whatever it is, then read the article he presents to back it up, and I can sometimes find where he's misinterpreted what's been written (sometimes strange/extraordinary stuff actually happens, so it's not like he's always wrong). More than once he's told me about things he was thinking about telling me, until he dug more deeply into them himself and discovered that his initial source or interpretation was wrong. (Oh, there are also some subjects on which he is definitely an "expert," and I generally won't question what he says about them unless it's completely outlandish, and it usually turns out I've just mis-heard him.)

So I think that by just being a critical thinker around (some) people can get them to start applying those tools more often themselves. Time will tell if my first example ever starts behaving more like my second, although the former only has a few years left before retirement.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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H. Humbert
SFN Die Hard

USA
4574 Posts

Posted - 04/04/2011 :  22:22:17   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send H. Humbert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Dave W.
So I think that by just being a critical thinker around (some) people can get them to start applying those tools more often themselves.
Wow. That's a really excellent point, and one that I've never heard raised in defense of the New Atheists, but I'll be sure to start doing so.


"A man is his own easiest dupe, for what he wishes to be true he generally believes to be true." --Demosthenes

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself - and you are the easiest person to fool." --Richard P. Feynman

"Face facts with dignity." --found inside a fortune cookie
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26002 Posts

Posted - 04/05/2011 :  04:29:45   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by H. Humbert

Wow. That's a really excellent point, and one that I've never heard raised in defense of the New Atheists, but I'll be sure to start doing so.
Perhaps ironically, my example guy went and got himself baptized and joined a church a few years ago, so I'm not sure you can generalize. Maybe I should have noted that what he seems to be more skeptical of are political and science/tech stories in the media.

On the other hand, it could be argued that New Atheist books and talks and what-not are also examples of public critical thinking, and so things like Dawkins' "Convert's Corner" make exactly the point you say you haven't seen in defense of New Atheists, and in exactly the right context.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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Fripp
SFN Regular

USA
727 Posts

Posted - 04/05/2011 :  05:11:32   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Fripp a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I don't want to take this topic off-track, but I really wish I hadn't taken a sip of coffee when I read this line...

Originally posted by Dude
There was a discussion here a few years ago that I'll reference, Ricky was insisting that nothing was impossible. I challenged him to poop out a fully functional SUV. Within the specific context, today, of human biology and the human digestive tract, I am still comfortable saying that it is absolutely impossible for Ricky to start up a vehicle manufacturing shop in his colon.



"What the hell is an Aluminum Falcon?"

"Oh, I'm sorry. I thought my Dark Lord of the Sith could protect a small thermal exhaust port that's only 2-meters wide! That thing wasn't even fully paid off yet! You have any idea what this is going to do to my credit?!?!"

"What? Oh, oh, 'just rebuild it'? Oh, real [bleep]ing original. And who's gonna give me a loan, jackhole? You? You got an ATM on that torso LiteBrite?"
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Dr. Mabuse
Septic Fiend

Sweden
9672 Posts

Posted - 04/05/2011 :  06:55:35   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Dr. Mabuse an ICQ Message Send Dr. Mabuse a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by H. Humbert

This didn't quite make sense to me at first because cold can freeze the sap in trees and make them explode.
Mythbusters tried to explode a tree using liquid nitrogen, but it didn't work.



Dr. Mabuse - "When the going gets tough, the tough get Duct-tape..."
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"Equivocation is not just a job, for a creationist it's a way of life..." Dr. Mabuse

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Send them unarmed civilians for target practice..
Collateralmurder.
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alienist
Skeptic Friend

USA
210 Posts

Posted - 04/05/2011 :  08:06:06   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send alienist a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I had a patient tell me the neighbors were blowing smoke into her apartment through the vents. My initial thought was to think she was paranoid. In turned out that the neighbors were blowing smoke into her apartment.

One of my favorite quotes is "just because you are paranoid, doesn't mean they are not out to get you."

The example above reminds me to be aware of when I am making assumptions. It also means always questioning conclusions I make. Is my conclusion based on assumptions, or due to a lack of data or my own biases?

The only normal people are the ones you don't know very well! - Joe Ancis
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Kil
Evil Skeptic

USA
13462 Posts

Posted - 04/05/2011 :  08:50:47   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Kil's Homepage  Send Kil an AOL message  Send Kil a Yahoo! Message Send Kil a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I have written two essays on the subject of skepticism and critical thinking. So I might as well post the links to them here. Having just read them, I think it's time I go back and do a bit of rewriting, because, well... there is much that I have written that could either be said better, or my thinking has changed somewhat since I wrote those. In general though, they still pretty much say what I want them to say about skepticism and critical thinking. They are:

On BEING A SKEPTIC You don't have to be a rocket scientist

And

What is a Skeptic and Why Bother Being One?

There is some overlap in these articles, but then, that's bound to happen when writing on the same subject. You will notice that I use the word "skepticism" as interchangable with critical thinking. (I don't even mention CT even though it's implied.) That's something I would probably change were I to go back and do an edit. I'll quote one section from the latter essay.

So what is skepticism? The American Heritage Dictionary defines it as “A doubting or questioning attitude or state of mind.” That is true to a point. Unfortunalty, this definition also implies a certain closed-mindedness. It stops well short of how we skeptics view our skepticism. I view skepticism as a method for finding out if a claim has any value by asking questions and considering the evidence for the claim. We become skeptical when a claim does not seem tenable. We approach such a claim with doubt. We want to know more about it. While our doubt may be justified, we must remain open to the idea that the claimant might be able to support that claim. Simply doubting a claim is not enough. We will learn nothing if we remain steeped in doubt. Doubt should serve as the motivator for skeptical inquiry.

Skeptical Inquiry:

A claim has been made and for one reason or another it seems less than plausible, so we ask the person making the claim for evidence that might validate the claim. Or, we might seek out evidence ourselves because we are curious. We look at whatever evidence we have and consider the following:

Can the evidence be explained in another way?
Did a mind bend that spoon, or is it a simple magic trick
that most magicians know?

Where did the evidence come from?
Did the evidence come from a nutritionist backing up claims
made by Steve Garvey selling a diet product on an infomercial?
Was the evidence a testimonial? Or was the evidence a result
of a controlled double-blind study conducted by a major
university and then published and peer-reviewed?

Will scientific analysis support the evidence?
This goes for almost every claim.

Is the claim falsifiable?
Is the claim in a realm that can be tested and proven one way
or the other?

(Some claims are not falsifiable. Many supernatural claims
may be explained in ways that are more satisfying to a skeptic.
Does John Edwards play a game of twenty questions, thereby
getting those he is reading to supply him with his hits? Is a
ghost more likely the figment of an active imagination and
creaky boards? Speaking for myself, I doubt supernatural
claims on the grounds that I have seen no convincing evidence
that there is anything outside of nature. But I cannot prove
that. I cannot prove the non-existence of anything...)

Is the evidence strong enough to support the claim?
If the evidence was strong enough to withstand the above tests,
we can now regard the claim as valid -- at least provisionally.
Like a scientific theory, new evidence may support the claim or
throw it back into doubt.



Uncertainty may make you uncomfortable. Certainty makes you ridiculous.

Why not question something for a change?

Genetic Literacy Project
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26002 Posts

Posted - 04/05/2011 :  10:09:06   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Fripp

I don't want to take this topic off-track, but I really wish I hadn't taken a sip of coffee when I read this line...
Originally posted by Dude
There was a discussion here a few years ago that I'll reference, Ricky was insisting that nothing was impossible. I challenged him to poop out a fully functional SUV. Within the specific context, today, of human biology and the human digestive tract, I am still comfortable saying that it is absolutely impossible for Ricky to start up a vehicle manufacturing shop in his colon.
That six-year-old thread is still full of LOLz.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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bngbuck
SFN Addict

USA
2437 Posts

Posted - 04/05/2011 :  21:37:10   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send bngbuck a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Dude.....

and at least one veteran poster who has decided to use "critical thinking" as a derogatory term
Not at all.
bngbuck
The method (CT) is the best available for many such claims. There are some (like Le Penseur's) on which it doesn't work, as we have seen. Most importantly, I feel that beginning any investigation requires a complete lack of prejudice.
I need some education on the nature of Critical Thinking. I would like to ask Dude several questions:

1. Many of the descriptions of the application of CT mention the necessity of evidence.
Please define evidence as required for CT analysis of the truth value of propositions.

2. Is God (typical fundie God) defined as impossible by full analysis using CT?


More questions follow, if you care to answer these to the best of your ability
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