Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Yet more on the topic of why we believe what we believe

Great program on NPR this evening, "Belief In Climate Change Hinges On Worldview," yet another discussion of a topic that seems to be at the forefront of my mind recently.

Over the past few months, polls show that fewer Americans say they believe humans are making the planet dangerously warmer, despite a raft of scientific reports that say otherwise.

This puzzles many climate scientists — but not some social scientists, whose research suggests that facts may not be as important as one's beliefs.

Another of the "Big Questions."

I don't have any answers to this conundrum, except, perhaps: Observe the golden rule and always keep your eyes, mind, and heart open.

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1 comment:

  1. I keep coming across related discussions on this topic.

    The Mythbusters of Psychology is Harriet Hall's review of 50 Great Myths of Popular Psychology: Shattering Widespread Misconceptions about Human Behavior:

    "They discuss our susceptibility to optical illusions and other cognitive illusions, our propensity to see patterns where they don’t exist, the unreliability of intuition, and the fact that common sense frequently misleads us. They characterize science as “uncommon sense” – it requires us to set aside our common sense preconceptions when evaluating evidence.

    "They cover 50 myths in depth, explaining their origins, why people believe them, and what the published research has to say about the claims. Everything is meticulously documented with sources listed."

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