The Mind s Compartments Create Conflicting Beliefs

Jan 13, 2013 Full story: www.scientificamerican.com 6

Compartmentalization is at work when new scientific theories conflict with older and more naive beliefs. In the 2012 paper researchers found that subjects more quickly verified the validity of scientific statements when those statements agreed with their prior naive beliefs. Contradictory scientific statements were processed more slowly and less accurately.

Full Story

“ecrasez l'infame”

Since: May 08

Atlanta, Georgia

#1 Jan 13, 2013
Interesting read.

“It's just a box of rain...”

Since: May 07

Knoxville, TN

#2 Jan 13, 2013
Interesting, indeed. It confirms my suspicion that changing HOW we decide what to believe is much more important than changing the beliefs themselves. If our processes are improved and we are better able to integrate the"compartments" that the article refers to, more rational beliefs may well follow of their own accord, but if we simply switch sides, so to speak, the underlying cognitive dissonance seems likely to remain. If that's true, advocating for rational skepticism and intellectual honesty is likely to me more productive than simply hammering away about atheism or the various realities that religions deny.

I do hope that this article sparks a body of thoughtful discussion. Too many of the best articles in this forum generate very short-lived threads.

“Exercise Your Brain”

Since: Jun 07

Planet Earth

#3 Jan 13, 2013
Much food for thought.

“Blue Collar Philosopher”

Since: Nov 08

Texas, USA

#4 Jan 13, 2013
The article makes good sense. How to use the "compartment" concept to make more effective (persuasive?) arguments with our godbot opponents ... I could use some help with.
EdSed

Hamilton, UK

#5 Jan 13, 2013
I came across an article recently (maybe in SA) about self-awareness. Apparently, a number of people were assessed as to IQ and problem solving. Those who were brighter had a far more accurate and realistic idea of their level than those who were 'dimmer'.(The "dim" generally appear to believe themselves to be far brighter than they are able to demonstrate scientifically). I suppose from the perspective of 'survival of the fittest' it makes little sense to believe oneself dim whatever the evidence.

Good-old Scientific American. Every Child should have it. NEW SCIENTIST is less 'heavy' and in the UK FIRST NEWS has just appeared as a newspaper to stimulate interest in world events for 7to14 year-olds.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_biases_i...

http://www.newscientist.com/subs/offer...

Here's a man who can change his mind...
http://newhumanist.org.uk/2784/no-more-lies
(Walworth Rd has gone downhill since I was there, apparently).

“Blue Collar Philosopher”

Since: Nov 08

Texas, USA

#6 Jan 14, 2013
EdSed wrote:
I came across an article recently (maybe in SA) about self-awareness. Apparently, a number of people were assessed as to IQ and problem solving. Those who were brighter had a far more accurate and realistic idea of their level than those who were 'dimmer'.(The "dim" generally appear to believe themselves to be far brighter than they are able to demonstrate scientifically). I suppose from the perspective of 'survival of the fittest' it makes little sense to believe oneself dim whatever the evidence.
Good-old Scientific American. Every Child should have it. NEW SCIENTIST is less 'heavy' and in the UK FIRST NEWS has just appeared as a newspaper to stimulate interest in world events for 7to14 year-olds.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_biases_i...
http://www.newscientist.com/subs/offer...
Here's a man who can change his mind...
http://newhumanist.org.uk/2784/no-more-lies
(Walworth Rd has gone downhill since I was there, apparently).
Wow. That's a lot of biases. First step in avoiding them is to know they exist, right?!? NEW SCIENTIST sounds good but not at $85 for digital subscription, I'll have to pass. " www.sciencedaily.com " is short, sweet and best of all ... free.

Tell me when this thread is updated:

Subscribe Now Add to my Tracker

Add your comments below

Characters left: 4000

Please note by submitting this form you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Service and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator. Send us your feedback.

University of Pennsylvania Discussions

Title Updated Last By Comments
Medicare reduces funding to 9 O.C. hospitals Dec 19 icthelite 1
Turkey's first culture minister passes away Dec 6 SpaceBlues 1
Do You Believe in Magic?' by Paul Offit (Jul '13) Nov 30 sakshi11 2
Dr. Lisa Stern, 54, right, a pediatrician, talk... Nov '14 VACCINE 101 1
American voters "stupid," really? Nov '14 Ace McMillan 16
Opinion: Jonathan Gruber's - Stupid' Budget Tricks Nov '14 Mark Winshel 3
Cal U. player Corey Ford's bond revoked in DC h... Nov '14 checkers 1
More from around the web