• 180 Proof
    14.5k
    Everything humans do is a product of culture and society, and always has been. — Jamal
    :up:
  • Jamal
    9.2k
    It’s not a particularly Marxist view any more. That beliefs cannot be disentangled from society, or that they do not float free of society, is pretty standard in sociology, anthropology, historiography, etc.
  • Wayfarer
    21.1k
    But that is one of the points at issue, although I’m not in a position to pursue it right at the moment.
  • Jamal
    9.2k
    Yes, I did expect you to say that it’s precisely the supposed reduction of ideas to the socially material that is characteristic of secular humanist sciences such as sociology. Anyway yeh, it’s for another discussion.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    12.6k
    Just checking as a non-philosopher here. Aren't biases generally like axioms or presuppositions, which provide a kind of foundation to one's thinking?Tom Storm

    That's what I was telling Christoffer, they are what we enter the logical process with, the premises.

    Is a potential task of philosophy to question and perhaps dismantle axioms (beliefs, biases) one holds to find enhanced approaches to thinking and living? I can't help but find myself in a realm of 'good' biases and 'bad' biases and how this is determined strikes me as needing to be bias led.Tom Storm

    I suppose that's a fairly accurate description of skepticism, to dismantle fundamental beliefs, making a deeper analysis. But not all philosophers have this attitude. Some feel like they've come up with something significant, an important original idea, and so they work to put this idea across to others.

    I believe there are two sides to philosophy, reading and writing, or taking information in, and putting information out. The reading is the skeptical side, because in doing so we are always considering new information, and how it relates to the beliefs we currently hold, all the while being skeptical of the information being read, as well as the information already held, and looking for consistency amongst all the other material we are familiar with. Writing on the other hand involves a different type of thinking because we feel a need to make sense to others. They are looking for " the point" of the passage, the principle, the idea, or belief which you are trying to put across. This "point" becomes the bias which you are demonstrating.

    We could label these two ways of thinking as analysis and synthesis. Analysis is a divisive process (deconstruction for example) where we take apart ideas and beliefs, finding their constitutive elements, relating them to the ideas and beliefs we already hold (biases), to find inconsistencies and incoherencies. The goal is just to recognize where and how the consistencies and inconsistencies appear, because neither side of contradictory beliefs merits rejection just on the basis of contradicting the other side. Which of the two sides gets rejected is decided by the synthesis process. This is an effort to build a whole, by relating various ideas. So which of the two contradictory beliefs gets saved and which gets rejected depends on the whole which is being created. This is where intention plays its very important role. The purpose (Plato's "the good") defines the whole, so it provides the basis for rejection or maintaining the elements in synthesis.

    You can see here how bias is fundamentally purpose based. We choose our premises, axioms, and presuppositions, based on the purpose we have in mind. There is a common tendency, which I would say is a significant misunderstanding, to portray the bias in a determinist way. This perspective would model the bias as a product of past learning, which gets reinforced over time like a habit, through experience, to produce its strength. But this completely ignores the basic and fundamental fact, that we can, and actually do, freely choose our biases. So the bias is misrepresented as produced by some underlying innate feature, rather than as freely chosen through intention. The reality is that we choose our biases according to our intentions, and a long lasting, deep seated bias is representative of a strongly held intention.

    But I’m not sure what you’re getting at.Jamal

    Neither am I... but that's the way I roll. According to what is expressed above, not having any specific intention, or point to be made, is the essence of being unbiased. Now I'm showing my bias.
  • Christoffer
    1.9k
    We come into the world with proclivities, tendencies, traits, character, talents, and so on. These are all characteristics of living beings that are not reducible to physical forces. (One of the motifs from Buddhism, which is said to eschew the idea of soul, is that each individual is actually a 'mind-stream' (citta santāna) that manifests from life to life - a process, not an entity.)Wayfarer

    I'd say that's just nature and nurture, coded information in genetics as a continuum through generations as nature, and cultural knowledge past down as nurture. If that concept aligns with that then it can have poetical value, but for me it's better to call a spade a spade so as to not add confusion into already complex concepts.

    I tend to do this because I'm also working with fiction, so I tend to keep philosophy clean of poetry and live out my poetic output in fiction.

    But I don’t agree, on those grounds, that it is a meaningless term, or connotes an obsolete or supestitious idea.Wayfarer

    As above, I think the term has meaning especially when working with fiction as the poetry in fiction relies on imagination and as such, something like "soul" has great importance in conveying a story's meaning, but with more interesting paint than the purely factual.

    That is typical of fundamentalism, not so much of the classical tradition.Wayfarer

    I have found most religious people to be far more fundamentalists than they even seem to be aware of themselves. Most can be very balanced in conceptual thinking up until a point where they switch into fundamentalism, and that switch can have an almost Jekyll and Hide vibe to it when witnessed during a conversation.

    I'm not sure there is a "classical tradition", a religious life seem to be mostly very subjective even if practices as an institution looks collective. The individuals within the same religion can widely rely on very different interpretations and practical use of said religion. Some might be very secular, not even mentioning their belief system, while others carry their personal interpretation as a T-shirt.

    You are not getting it Christoffer.Metaphysician Undercover

    No, it's you who continuously doesn't get it. You are pretty much approaching this topic in just the kind of way that I described in my analogy of the gallery, being a rigid statue who are unable to see anywhere but one single direction. You are locked into a thought process that makes it impossible for you to understand a simple logical description of bias that is both based in a broad and fundamental understanding of basic psychology and how it relates to the concept of critical thinking, which is a core aspect of philosophy. And your constant repetition of the same obvious misunderstanding makes you constantly repeat the same conclusion over and over, ignoring the faulty premisses you provide. There's no point in trying to explain this to you when you're stuck in such a loop.

    Well, if you cannot understand how it is contradictory to say that a neutral phenomenon is bad, I don't see much point in continuing this discussion.Metaphysician Undercover

    Seriously, now you're just acting stupid. A rock falling is a neutral thing, a rock falling on you is bad for you. If you cannot understand that a bias, a neutral psychological phenomena and that this phenomena is bad for critical thinking are two distinct different things. and exist together, you are either purposely just ignorant or you have a serious lack of understanding language or something.

    In the end you just ignore everything that doesn't fit your argument or narrative. Your entire schtick relies on my concept being faulty in this neutral/bad logic, so you try to force this notion onto the discussion in order to be able to win the argument. It's petty and dishonest and I don't think it's wort continuing discussing in that manner.

    I suppose you're referring to the semantics of deception here, also known in philosophy as sophistry.Metaphysician Undercover

    No, it is simple english and logic. A phenomena can be neutral, how that phenomena affects a certain thing can be negative. If you cannot understand how these two coexist you ignore simple logic. Like I said, a falling stone is neutral, a stone falling on you is negative. If you disagree with that, then you are just ignorant.

    Clearly no force is neutralMetaphysician Undercover

    You are applying arbitrary values of good and bad (emotional human judgement) onto a thing that is neutral. Bias is neutral just as gravity, in that it does not inhabit any arbitrary human values in the form of "good" or "bad. A neutral force can have a negative or positive effect on something, and that is not the same thing as it inhabiting an arbitrary value of good or bad in itself. Your argument relies on there existing an objective good and bad value that exist outside of human values, and such a claim have a burden of proof to show what these values are, comes from and why they exist. How can this be confusing for you, I don't understand. It is pretty basic stuff.

    Yes, good and bad are human judgements, but so is "neutral" a human judgement as well.Metaphysician Undercover

    No, physics are neutral, there's nothing arbitrary good or bad about them. If you say that "neutral" is a human judgement of physics, then you need to explain how you define physical processes. If they are not neutral in the form of not having arbitrary values, then what are they? If you ignore to answer this you are ignoring a vital part in what holds together your reasoning.

    There's no point going further if you do not understand these basics.

    By your own description of bias Christoffer. You said that a bias is a gravitation toward what is preferable. Doesn't "preferable" imply what is satisfactory or desired? Since this is the definition of "good", then we ought to conclude that biases are good. Where do you get this idea that biases are bad?Metaphysician Undercover

    "Preferable" means whatever is preferable in your psychology. You are biased towards liking hamburgers, so your thinking while planning dinner might be that you lean (gravitate) towards ordering hamburgers than the more objectively concluded healthy eating of a sallad. If you are unable to understand that this kind of pull towards preferable arbitrary and emotional values of your subjective and individual preferences has a negative effect on your critical thinking when you try to form an objective conclusions of a complex concept, then you simply are uneducated about what bias actually is in psychology, and don't know what it means in the context of critical thinking and also don't understand the importance of critical thinking in philosophy. Which seems obvious based on the incoherent and confused way you have structured premise-based arguments earlier.

    Is a potential task of philosophy to question and perhaps dismantle axioms (beliefs, biases) one holds to find enhanced approaches to thinking and living?Tom Storm

    This has been my argument throughout this thread. I think it is the primary task of philosophy to detach yourself from bias when doing critical thinking in order to be able to view a concept in all directions and not just through the filters of what you prefer.

    I can't help but find myself in a realm of 'good' biases and 'bad' biases and how this is determined strikes me as needing to be bias led.Tom Storm

    How can you objectively conclude a certain bias to be good or bad? What is a good bias? This question has not been answered in this thread so far and I don't think it ever will be. It is like stating that there are good and bad morals, and so far, moral philosophy has not reached an end point. Anyone claiming to know for certain what is good or bad in ethics haven't gone deep enough down in that rabbit hole.

    I asked ChatGPT to list some biases that can affect us in some ways. In critical thinking I wonder if anyone can attribute any arbitrary values to these that would help critical thinking.

    • Confirmation bias
    • Availability heuristic
    • Anchoring bias
    • Hindsight bias
    • Overconfidence effect
    • Halo effect
    • Bandwagon effect
    • Framing effect
    • Self-serving bias
    • Sunk cost fallacy
    • Status quo bias
    • Illusory correlation
    • Negativity bias
    • Dunning-Kruger effect
    • Gambler's fallacy
    • Recency bias
    • Primacy effect
    • Loss aversion
    • Selection bias
    • Authority bias
    • Belief bias
    • Blind spot bias
    • Choice-supportive bias
    • Clustering illusion
    • Cognitive dissonance
    • Conservatism bias
    • Conformity bias
    • Curse of knowledge
    • Empathy gap
    • Endowment effect
    • False consensus effect
    • Fundamental attribution error
    • Groupthink
    • Herd mentality
    • In-group bias
    • Information bias
    • Just-world hypothesis
    • Mere exposure effect
    • Moral licensing
    • Not-invented-here bias
    • Outcome bias
    • Overoptimism bias
    • Pessimism bias
    • Placebo effect
    • Pro-innovation bias
    • Reactance
    • Representative heuristic
    • Salience bias
    • Semmelweis reflex
    • Social desirability bias
    • Stereotyping
    • Survivorship bias
    • Zero-risk bias
    • Anchoring and adjustment bias
    • Attentional bias
    • Choice paralysis
    • Distinction bias
    • Functional fixedness
    • Illusion of control
    • Inattentional blindness
    • Base rate fallacy
    • Disposition effect
    • False memory
    • Illusion of transparency
    • Optimism bias
    • Placebo effect
    • Selective perception
    • Actor-observer bias
    • Availability cascade
    • Certainty effect
    • Change bias
    • Curse of dimensionality
    • Decision fatigue
    • Declinism
    • Distortions of memory
    • Empathy gap
    • Fading affect bias
    • Focusing effect
    • Forer effect (Barnum effect)
    • Functional fixedness
    • Group attribution error
    • Hedonic treadmill
    • Hyperbolic discounting
    • Illusion of asymmetric insight
    • Illusion of knowledge
    • Illusion of transparency
    • Impact bias
    • Incrementalism
    • Insensitivity to base rates
    • Inter-group bias
    • Introspection illusion
    • Law of small numbers
    • Limited attention
    • Magical thinking
    • Memory biases
    • Misinformation effect
    • Moral luck
    • Naive realism
    • Name letter effect
    • Narrativity bias
    • Negativity bias
    • Normalcy bias
    • Notable numbness
    • Observational selection bias
    • Omission bias
    • Overattribution
    • Overjustification effect
    • Pareidolia
    • Planning fallacy
    • Post-purchase rationalization
    • Projection bias
    • Pseudocertainty effect
    • Reactance
    • Regret aversion
    • Restraint bias
    • Rosy retrospection
    • Self-enhancing transmission bias
    • Semmelweis reflex
    • Serial position effect
    • Shared information bias
    • Social comparison bias
    • Social proof
    • Spacing effect
    • Spiral of silence
    • Stereotyping
    • Subadditivity effect
    • Subjective validation
    • System justification
    • Trait ascription bias
    • Unit bias
    • Von Restorff effect
    • Wavelength-as-distance heuristic
    • Zero-sum bias

    I still think a presupposition or an axiom is different to a bias. I suppose you could say that a strongly held but unexamined belief might constitute a bias. And that there are ‘cultural biases’ that are held by many people who take them as ‘the way things are’. Some will characterize religious attitudes like that but I think the same can be said of scientific materialism.Wayfarer

    While the above list constitutes certain types of biases, I've also focused on those kinds of biases that you mention here. A bias can both be an argumentative bias in reasoning (the thing that is bad for critical thinking), but also be a strongly held but unexamined belief might constitute a bias. Meaning, something that isn't a failure in an argument, but a "pull" towards a preferred perspective that makes it hard to both understand a concept fully and also hard to form a concept objectively or universally.

    A core part of philosophy is that what I say needs to have a logic that others can agree on. If the logic of my argument is only logical for myself and in my world-view and through my personal opinions, then it is just subjective opinions and doesn't constitute philosophy.

    Philosophy is a form of subjective thinking in an objective form for a collective space.

    Actually I guess ‘confirmation bias’ would often be very difficult to expose and often effective as an accusation. See this case of.a biased investigator accusing juries of bias.Wayfarer

    Exactly, it is difficult to spot it and therefore I'm arguing for methods to review one's own thinking when trying to form arguments or concept. And because it is hard, we both need good methods and praxis of structuring our own thinking and also the collective space (like this forum) to shed a light on the biases that still might linger in our arguments. I think that's why the art of discussion throughout the history of philosophy has been a core aspect of philosophy. We need methods for both the subjective and the collective but both are required in tandem for a concept to be fully formed.

    I must not be understanding what the discussion between C and MU is about then.Tom Storm

    Me neither, I've tried to point out that his argument is based on a flawed understanding of a basic thing. Bias is an always existing neutral psychological phenomena that is a core part of our human mind and cognition. This bias has a negative and bad effect on the ability to conduct critical thinking (which is not all that people do and therefore the value of "negative" or "bad" is applied to specifically how it affects critical thinking), often taking the shape and form of some error in thinking found in lists like the above. So it is the job of a philosopher to use methods to reduce or remove bias from an argument so that it holds together in a logic that others can agree is logical.

    It is the foundation for how we structure deduction, induction or any kind of philosophical thinking. If you cannot convince another through rational reasoning, or at least shown the seed of a valid conclusion that can be built upon by yourself or the other, then you're not doing philosophy and instead just debate opinions. It's the basic difference between "I don't agree with it because I don't like it" and "I don't agree with it because the argument does not show a clear logic or holds together". The latter is not an emotional reaction but a continuation of the thought process from one part to another. If both are good at philosophical dialogue, the first speaker will understand the objections and restructure or rethink the previous argument into a better logic until it can be agreed upon. If the conclusion reaches a point where the conclusion is a basic "maybe this", then both would agree that it has partially shown an internal logic and that it is worth keeping as a concept until further understandings and discoveries add to the building blocks of future progression of said argument.

    Even if "logic" is mostly used for analytical philosophy, I'm using the word here more broadly as even the most continental argument requires a kind of logic that makes it objectively relevant for the group that reads it. "I like pasta" has a logic only to you, "I would argue that pasta is liked by a large group of people in the world" is a logic that others can agree upon. And this is not really empirical and analytical, which means that in continental philosophy, especially post-modernists, their logic has to do with a sense of logic, a sense of intuitive structure that holds together. Like "hell is other people", does not have any analytical and empirical core, but it does have a logic to it. In the context it is used, we understand the idea and concept Sartre wrote about.


    Everything humans do is a product of culture and society, and always has been.Jamal

    An interesting think when reading psychology is how basic humans are. We are essentially still the animals who evolved cognition as an animal trait to have an edge in nature and that culture and society as we view it today seem an emergent thing coming out of this advanced natural trait of higher conceptualization and adaptation through cognition. So, I think we need to include nature into that, everything humans do is a product of our nature, culture and society. We could, however, also argue that the definition of culture and society can be applied to other animals as well, like a group of gorillas have a form of culture and society. But for the sake of simplicity and importance of remembering that humans are still animals with instincts and intuitions within our formed culture and society.


    But not all philosophers have this attitude. Some feel like they've come up with something significant, an important original idea, and so they work to put this idea across to others.Metaphysician Undercover

    An idea without philosophical scrutiny is not philosophy but just opinions. Philosophy requires more than "I have an idea" or "I believe". People in normal everyday life do not conduct philosophy in the way philosophers do and putting these two approaches on equal footing is not correct.
  • Mww
    4.7k
    Everything humans do is a product of culture and society, and always has been.Jamal

    Dissent seconded. Everything a human does is “related to….” more than “a product of…..”.

    Logically, the implication is that a culture or society is necessary for a human to do anything, which is quite absurd, insofar as the notion that humans did things before there were cultures or societies for their activities to be a product of, is hardly self-contradictory.
  • Wayfarer
    21.1k
    have found most religious people to be far more fundamentalists than they even seem to be aware of themselvesChristoffer

    There are fundamentalists in areas other than religion.
  • Christoffer
    1.9k
    There are fundamentalists in areas other than religion.Wayfarer

    Yes, true.
  • Wayfarer
    21.1k
    I'm not sure there is a "classical tradition", a religious life seem to be mostly very subjective even if practices as an institution looks collective.Christoffer

    There’s a term that is distinct from both the subjective and objective, and that it transcendent(al). The detachment of the sage in philosophy has a different quality to the detachment of the scientist because it is concerned with more than what is simply quantifiable. But of course in secular culture, everything is viewed through what Charles Taylor calls ‘the immanent frame’ which brackets out consideration of the transcendent(al).
  • Christoffer
    1.9k
    The detachment of the sage in philosophy has a different quality to the detachment of the scientist because it is concerned with more than what is simply quantifiable.Wayfarer

    I agree, but it is still an active detachement even for the sage. When I go through everyday life I do not apply the complex thought process I use in philosophy to detach myself from my biases. So it is an active mode that I need concentration for. Of course, I would like to have that concentration more as an automatic thing in my unconscious approach to everything in life, something that I do more regularly, and I'm constantly training myself to be better at it in any situation, even in everyday life, but it has a sense of life long dedication that takes a lifetime to master because it is an act against the very nature of our basic psychology. Just like we do not eat off the ground, everything in modern life is a forced behavior to act against basic instincts of our animal self.
  • Wayfarer
    21.1k
    I agree, but it is still an active detachement even for the sage.Christoffer

    Indeed. 'Being' is a verb. ;-)
  • Jamal
    9.2k
    the notion that humans did things before there were cultures or societies for their activities to be a product of, is hardly self-contradictoryMww

    Since living in societies is part of what it is to be human, the notion is indeed self-contradictory. A society is a human social group; proto-human apes had social groups; it follows that there have never been humans that didn’t live in a society.

    That’s not the real issue though. The real issue is the one you allude to, regarding the causality. I’d say roughly that it’s a two-way, reciprocal causality between the way we live and the way we think, with, probably, our practices as in some way primary.
  • Mww
    4.7k


    Ok, thanks.
  • praxis
    6.2k
    I would like to have that concentration more as an automatic thing in my unconscious approach to everything in life, something that I do more regularly, and I'm constantly training myself to be better at it in any situation, even in everyday life, but it has a sense of life long dedication that takes a lifetime to master because it is an act against the very nature of our basic psychology. Just like we do not eat off the ground, everything in modern life is a forced behavior to act against basic instincts of our animal self.Christoffer

    I think you should embrace the animal nature of our basic psychology and stop pretending to be something we’re not.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    12.6k
    Seriously, now you're just acting stupid. A rock falling is a neutral thing, a rock falling on you is bad for you.Christoffer

    Clearly it's you who's acting stupid. Gravity is not "a rock falling". We might say gravity is the cause of the rock falling, but since it always causes the rock to fall down instead of falling up, it cannot be said to be neutral. A cause, since it affects an object in a specific way, and never in the opposite way, cannot be said to be neutral.

    Your entire schtick relies on my concept being faulty in this neutral/bad logic, so you try to force this notion onto the discussion in order to be able to win the argument.Christoffer

    You do not even remember my argument now, or you're intentional avoiding it. I argued that if you premise that biases are bad, we must allow that some are good as well, or else we'd have to conclude that thinking is bad, since it employs biases as a base aspect. So you insisted that biases are neutral, to support your claim that bias is bad for critical thinking. I am only insisting that your position is incoherent by way of contradiction. You are the one insisting that biases are both neutral and bad, not me. I'm merely pointing out the obvious, that this is contradictory.

    A phenomena can be neutral, how that phenomena affects a certain thing can be negative.Christoffer

    Obviously, it's you who is not following the principles of logic. If the effects of a phenomenon are said to be negative, then that phenomenon cannot be said to be neutral in relation to those effects, without contradiction.

    So, if bias is said to have a negative effect on thinking, then in relation to thinking, bias cannot be said to be neutral, it must be negative.

    What are you proposing Christoffer? Are you suggesting that we remove bias from the context of thinking, so that we can look at it as something neutral while its affect on thinking is looked at as bad? How could we do this? Are you Platonist? Do you suppose that we could assign independent existence to something like an idea, a belief, or a bias? Then we could look at the belief as existing independently from the human act of thinking, and say that as independent from thinking, the bias is neutral, but when it comes into the context of human thought, it's bad in that relation.

    You are applying arbitrary values of good and bad (emotional human judgement) onto a thing that is neutral. Bias is neutral just as gravity, in that it does not inhabit any arbitrary human values in the form of "good" or "bad. A neutral force can have a negative or positive effect on something, and that is not the same thing as it inhabiting an arbitrary value of good or bad in itself. Your argument relies on there existing an objective good and bad value that exist outside of human values, and such a claim have a burden of proof to show what these values are, comes from and why they exist. How can this be confusing for you, I don't understand. It is pretty basic stuff.Christoffer

    You can insist that all judgements of good or bad are arbitrary human judgements, if you like, but as I said, so is the judgement of "neutral" then. And, it is obviously contradictory to judge the same thing as both neutral, "and bad, in the same respect. I'm not referring to any sense of "objective good" here, I am referring only to your judgement, that bias is a neutral part of thinking, yet it is also a bad part of thinking.

    Do you agree that this is what you are arguing? You are saying that as a part of the act of thinking, bias is neutral, but also, as a part of the act of thinking, bias is bad. Why don't you see this as contradictory?

    Your gravity analogy doesn't really work very well because we do not judge the acts of gravity as good or bad, as we do the acts of human beings. So in the case of gravity we have to place "neutral" in relation to a different pair of opposites. That's why I used up and down. Obviously gravity is not neutral because it always moves things downward.

    No, physics are neutral, there's nothing arbitrary good or bad about them. IChristoffer

    Physics is a discipline, a field of study, therefore it is judged as good. No subjects of study are neutral or else a person would not be inclined to study them. They are studied because they are judged as good.

    If you say that "neutral" is a human judgement of physics, then you need to explain how you define physical processes. If they are not neutral in the form of not having arbitrary values, then what are they? If you ignore to answer this you are ignoring a vital part in what holds together your reasoning.Christoffer

    Sorry, I can't understand what you are asking. As I said above, "neutral" in the context of physical processes would have to be defined by something other than good or bad, because we do not judge these activities in relation to good and bad. Therefore if a physical process is judged as "neutral", neutrality is defined by something other than good and bad, because good and bad are not even possibilities.

    That is why your analogy fails. You take gravity, which is not judged as being good or bad, and you compare it to a human property, "bias" which you do judge as being bad. Then you try to say that bias is like gravity in the context of good, bad, and neutral. Obviously this doesn't work, because bias is a human disposition which can be judged as good, bad, or neutral, gravity is not. So the neutrality you assign to gravity is out of context, not neutral in the context of bad and good, and you argue by equivocation.

    Preferable" means whatever is preferable in your psychology. You are biased towards liking hamburgers, so your thinking while planning dinner might be that you lean (gravitate) towards ordering hamburgers than the more objectively concluded healthy eating of a sallad. If you are unable to understand that this kind of pull towards preferable arbitrary and emotional values of your subjective and individual preferences has a negative effect on your critical thinking when you try to form an objective conclusions of a complex concept, then you simply are uneducated about what bias actually is in psychology, and don't know what it means in the context of critical thinking and also don't understand the importance of critical thinking in philosophy. Which seems obvious based on the incoherent and confused way you have structured premise-based arguments earlier.Christoffer

    This makes no sense logically. You provide no logical demonstration for why you think salad is more "objectively concluded healthy eating" than hamburgers. What you are arguing is to replace one bias (preference) "hamburgers" with another bias (preference) "salad", and you add some big words (objectively concluded healthy eating), to make it sound like one of the biases is having "a negative effect on your critical thinking", and the other bias is somehow exempt from being subjected to critical thinking, as somehow unbiased, or objective. I mean, you might say that "science" tells you that salad is more objectively healthy, but that's just a fallacious appeal to authority, unless you lay out the argument.

    Bias is an always existing neutral psychological phenomena that is a core part of our human mind and cognition. This bias has a negative and bad effect on the ability to conduct critical thinking (which is not all that people do and therefore the value of "negative" or "bad" is applied to specifically how it affects critical thinking), often taking the shape and form of some error in thinking found in lists like the above.Christoffer

    The problem here, as I've already pointed out, is that you recognize bias as a "core", and therefore essential part of human cognition. This implies that it is a necessary aspect of all forms of thinking, and as a necessary aspect, it is "good" in that relation. Therefore we cannot say that there is any form of thinking in which bias is bad, as it is necessary to all forms.

    What you fail to understand is that all forms of so-called "critical thinking" proceed from biases, and these biases are essential and therefore good for that critical thinking. So you propose this form of "critical thinking" which can produce an endless list of biases which are labeled as bad, for having a bad effect on other forms of critical thinking. This supports your claim that biases are bad for critical thinking. However, you don't even seem to realize that your form of "critical thinking" is based in your own bias, the bias that bias is bad for critical thinking. So your form of "critical thinking" is based in a bias which is necessarily just as bad as all those other biases, because all biases are bad in relation to critical thinking, by your own premise.

    Your argument is self-refuting. Biases are natural as a core part of thinking. Your proposed form of "critical thinking", naturally has a core bias, therefore. Your core bias is that biases have a bad influence on critical thinking. Your core bias, that biases have a bad influence on critical thinking, by your own argument therefore, has a bad influence on your critical thinking.
  • Hanover
    12.2k
    Generalizing even further, philosophy is—or is part of—enlightenment, a means by which humans are freed from domination, whether by nature, myth, religion, governments, whatever it happens to be:Jamal

    So I watched the video, and my thoughts were as yours to the extent one could continually pull back the focus to greater generalizations, to where we don't just say philosophy is the tool to challenge "religion" as we define that term specifically, but as to any prevailing ideology. If, for example, the ideology du jour is wokeness, we use philosophy to challenge that to assure ourselves of its validity.

    Consistent with this was his 2nd reason for why philosophy is of value, and that was it coined concepts. This would therefore allow for some timeless truth to emerge, as in whatever it is that we learn from realizing that wokeness, for example, had certain negative characteristics, that could now exist as a newly understood concept we could use elsewhere.

    The problem I see is that he is defining the value of philosophy in terms of philosophy. That is, he explains, perhaps without realizing, not how philosophy is used as a tool on other disciplines, but how it internally works.

    That is, wokeness (our example) isn't something outside philosophy that philosophy subjects to criticism, but wokeness is itself a philosophy. Being a philosophy, it must adhere to philosophical challenges, like coherence, logic, empirical testing, etc. That is to say, was the video really just saying that ideologies of whatever particularity are fundamentally belief systems founded in human rationality, and if they can't survive intellectual challenge, they necessarily fail in their attempt to be a philosophy in the first place?
  • Janus
    15.8k
    Marx said that after turning Hegel on his head. I won’t argue the case beyond noting dissent.Wayfarer

    Marx said that he stood Hegel on his feet, since Hegel saw everything upside-down. But then Hegel agreed with Marx that everything humans do is a product of culture and society; they just disagreed as to what the most significant cultural and societal drivers are.
  • Mww
    4.7k
    Everything humans do is a product of culture and society, and always has been.Jamal

    Good.

    everything humans do is a product of our nature, culture and societyChristoffer

    Better.
  • Wayfarer
    21.1k
    Interesting how nature, once 'the created', is now imbued with the power of creating itself.
  • Mww
    4.7k
    …..the power of creating itself.Wayfarer

    …..which is, without doubt, the foremost logical catastrophe, like…..ever.

    (Disclaimer: not exactly sure you mean, so I’m begging anticipatory forgiveness)
  • 180 Proof
    14.5k
    Interesting how nature, once 'the created', is now imbued with the power of creating itself.Wayfarer
    Only in (primitive) 'creationist'-based cultures; however, not so according to Brahmins or Daoists (or, for that matter, either classical atomists or Spinozists) for whom nature itself is eternally naturing (à la autpoiesis).
  • Tom Storm
    8.6k
    That sounds interesting. Creationist cultures do seem to have a crudity about them which suggest creation is ours for the fucking... if you'll forgive the vulgarity.
  • Wayfarer
    21.1k
    6371 At the basis of the whole modern view of the world lies the illusion that the so-called laws of nature are the explanations of natural phenomena.

    6.372 So people stop short at natural laws as at something unassailable, as did the ancients at God and Fate.

    And they both are right and wrong. But the ancients were clearer, in so far as they recognized one clear terminus, whereas the modern system makes it appear as though everything were explained.
    — TLP

    I notice in modern discourse that even the notion of laws is called into question. This goes back to the discussion about the erosion of the idea of an animating cosmic purpose.
  • Mww
    4.7k


    So…..metaphysical reductionism to a certain point is an explanatory necessity, but beyond that point is inevitably illusory?

    “….6.373 The world is independent of my will….”
  • Tom Storm
    8.6k
    I notice in modern discourse that even the notion of laws is called into question. This goes back to the discussion about the erosion of the idea of an animating cosmic purpose.Wayfarer

    Well, I guess 'laws' does imply a 'lawgiver' in the crudest traditions of anthropomorphising. And 'laws of logic' are certainly seized upon constantly by zealous apologists (like William Lane Craig) who need a magic man, himself without apparent explanation, to explain reality. No one with an apophatic theology draws attention to 'laws' this way.
  • Metaphysician Undercover
    12.6k
    The problem I see is that he is defining the value of philosophy in terms of philosophy. That is, he explains, perhaps without realizing, not how philosophy is used as a tool on other disciplines, but how it internally works.Hanover

    This is similar to the problem which I see with Christoffer's approach to bias. Christoffer sees that critical thinking can be very effective for detecting biases which inhere within logical arguments. But then Christoffer has the audacity to insist that the effect which biases have on critical thinking is necessarily negative, without recognizing that this is itself, just a bias. So Christoffer shows an understanding of how critical thinking works, internally, but does not understand how it is applied toward understanding and judging the variety of biases which actually occur in practise. The critical point is that biases are judged relative to other biases, as the intrinsic of subjectivity of thinking cannot be annihilated.

    Instead, Christoffer is swayed by that personal bias, that all biases are bad for critical thinking. And this is a misunderstanding of how critical thinking actually works in practise to pit one bias against another. So this leaves Christoffer with an undermined argument, because that bias which Cristoffer applies in the argument, the idea that all biases are negative for critical thinking, must also be bad, by that premise.
  • universeness
    6.3k
    What is a good bias? This question has not been answered in this thread so far and I don't think it ever will be.Christoffer

    This made me consider abiogenesis and natural selection from the notion of bias.
    I don't think it's logical to assign bias of any kind to such processes, even through it seems personally intuitive to me, to assign a positive bias to both because I would not be here if such happenstance had not occurred. I asked chat GPT, "Is natural selection biased?"

    Its answer:
    Natural selection is not inherently biased. It is a fundamental mechanism of evolution that operates based on certain principles, including variation, heredity, and differential reproductive success. Natural selection does not have a deliberate or conscious bias; rather, it is an outcome of the interaction between organisms and their environment.

    However, it is important to note that the outcomes of natural selection can be influenced by various factors, which may introduce biases. These factors include environmental conditions, selective pressures, and genetic variations within a population. Natural selection favors traits that increase an organism's chances of survival and reproduction in a given environment. If certain traits provide a reproductive advantage in a particular context, they are more likely to be passed on to future generations.

    Biases can arise in natural selection when certain factors favor specific traits or individuals over others. These biases can be due to environmental changes, such as habitat fragmentation or human activities, which may alter the selective pressures acting on a population. Additionally, sexual selection, a form of natural selection driven by mate choice, can introduce biases in the evolution of certain physical or behavioral traits.

    It is important to distinguish between the concept of natural selection, which is a scientific process, and the potential biases that can arise within specific evolutionary contexts. Natural selection itself is a neutral process, but the outcomes of natural selection can be influenced by various factors, including biases.
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