It’s hard to change your mind

“The New Atheist Sam Harris recently offered to pay $10,000 to anyone who can disprove his arguments about morality. Jonathan Haidt analyzes the nature of reasoning, and the ease with which reason becomes a servant of the passions. He bets $10,000 that Harris will not change his mind.” Why? Because “people deploy their reasoning powers to find support for what they want to believe.”


One thought on “It’s hard to change your mind

  1. I have had a couple of arguments against Haidt concerning “certainty words” on twitter, which not long after Harris address very distinctly in his blog. That does not mean I cannot see the logic behind some of what he says like “people deploy their reasoning powers to find support for what they want to believe.” (funny- this is full of certainty) There is still fault here, however. If ones belief was that open mindedness was better than closed mindedness, then it’s possible that when regarding open mindedness vs close mindedness one may express bias, but for the beliefs under this philosophical umbrella would be more tentative and malleable. Another example is tradition. Tradition can easily to dogmatic behavior, but if there was a tradition of being skeptic, non dogmatic and openminded, then the tradition can no longer fit the standard of always being dogmatic. For scientists, science itself is something difficult to be unbiased about, but the practices within the field, not only promote skepticism and open mindedness, but it demands it. (Side thought: Fortunate for science it stands on its own- the scientific evidence one would need to prove science is wrong would in itself be science.)

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