The Psychology of Belief

Apr 2009
20
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Thanks, SWM. I got the email this morning, and thought I ought to say a little more about myself and my work. The excerpt above is from this:


http://www.amazon.co.uk/RELATIVITY-Theory-Everything-John-Duffield/dp/0956097804

This is what's called "taking the popularization route", which is fairly common in physics these days. No review copies have gone out to the general media, but it is getting out to the physics community. There is however a great deal of resistance from some quarters. People who talk glibly about ten-dimensional branes and parallel worlds find it very difficult to accept that relativity can be combined with quantum mechanics to formulate what's called a "unified model". They suffer from so much conviction that they utterly believe in things for which there is no evidence whatsoever, and find a way to dismiss evidence that threatens such beliefs. Whilst this is complicated by an element of competition, there are some uncomfortable parallels here with religion, superstition and ideology.
 
Apr 2009
143
0
Illinois
I am fascinated with this relativity stuff but not knowledgeable.

In examining life particularly my own, I decided to read as many books on success that I could find, because I was so unsuccessful. It stated in different books that successful people are careful to travel the well paved paths that were paved by great people and be very careful not to step outside of the path. Einstein was great.

I am currently reading a book on religious belief and subjectivity. If the two can be separated. That's the problem with our neurotic society. This is why people fail to be cured of an addiction. They can't seem to comprehend that the (energy) of their mind is (addicted TO) a (substance or act).

TO it. It is not a part of the individual so they believe the false. These people are typically maladjusted. You can determine this with a little looking into. The result is just as you have suggested Farsight. They believe what they come to believe with the support of others.

Anyone who would call someone gay or homosexual or drug addict because they thought of it are maladjusted. We live in a world of maladjusted maligned people. Maligned values is the key.

Maybe someone can elaborate and we can pin this down?
 
Apr 2009
20
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I think it's something dreadfully simple, Bill. This might sound trite, but I think it says it in a nutshell: people don't think as much as they think.
 
Jun 2009
531
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They can't easily be convinced their beliefs are wrong because they aren't fully conscious of why they are their beliefs, and thus they can't process or alter the information underlying their conclusion. Further complicating the problem is the fact that "unbelieving" the particular belief destroys all the other beliefs derived from that one, which makes the notion of unbelieving seem quite unappealing. And there's probably a lot of other complicating factors that can't easily be deduced without being in the situation.

You can either try to raise their consciousness of why their beliefs are the way they are (lots of work), or try to mitigate the complicating factors by, for instance, presenting them with a carrot (derivative beliefs based on your belief) to counter the negative (loss of derivative beliefs based on their belief) and allow them to perceive the isolated issue rationally.

It's also possible that you're just plain wrong, in which case successfully mitigating the complicating factors will simply lead to everyone reaching the wrong conclusion.
 
Apr 2009
143
0
Illinois
Farsight, I think it is called irresponsibility. I understand the mind to be responding. Products of our environment. The last post makes good sense. I have been very capable of figuring out things others would feel nearly impossible. I do it by considering all types of theories and someones personal perspective. I don't have to accept them as fact. Doing this allows me to broaden my own perspective and with joy I can come to an answer.
 
May 2009
207
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I like what you're saying here, Bill Hemphill. There are no facts really. There's only what we choose to call facts. In our society, if something is published in a scientific journal following the peer-review system, we call it a fact. But that really means nothing other than hypothesis testing is a useful way to move through the world. Most of the times it works as does the nice system you've described. Still, you need to always remain open to the possibility these systems will fail, because they often do.
 
Jun 2009
531
0
[quote author=Bill Hemphill link=topic=735.msg4187#msg4187 date=1245363075]
Farsight, I think it is called irresponsibility. I understand the mind to be responding. Products of our environment. The last post makes good sense. I have been very capable of figuring out things others would feel nearly impossible. I do it by considering all types of theories and someones personal perspective. I don't have to accept them as fact. Doing this allows me to broaden my own perspective and with joy I can come to an answer.
[/quote]

[quote author=anaklio link=topic=735.msg4189#msg4189 date=1245407507]
I like what you're saying here, Bill Hemphill. There are no facts really. There's only what we choose to call facts. In our society, if something is published in a scientific journal following the peer-review system, we call it a fact. But that really means nothing other than hypothesis testing is a useful way to move through the world. Most of the times it works as does the nice system you've described. Still, you need to always remain open to the possibility these systems will fail, because they often do.
[/quote]

The truth about truth is that truth doesn't exist. ;)
 
Apr 2009
143
0
Illinois
Sorry Voodoo, God is truth. I try to explain to others that honesty is not truth. But sometimes what a person is saying honestly is the truth. Ignorance and honesty are a bad combination.
 
Apr 2009
20
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What beats me is how people who consider themselves to be scientific and rational believe in things for which no evidence exists, and believe in them so strongly that they will not examine contrary evidence. There's some kind of lock-up at work here. Like "I know it's true so I don't need to look at the evidence".
 
Apr 2009
143
0
Illinois
I was once challenged to admit that I was wrong because I agreed that a book exists and it does have the information that the person was trying to express as fact. After explaining that I had read several books on the same subject and why I had come to a different conclusion, my rival came into agreement with me and then said 'who would read more than one book on the same subject'.

We all have perspective. And a personal one at that. It is a difficult thing to teach Psychology in this era when the post era admitted that they did not totally know or understand the human psyche. I should note here that we actually use their beliefs to keep us inline.
Many people get their shingle(college diploma) and post their shingle as being in business to treat people for psychiatric problems. All they really know are some knowledge's that were enough for them to pass a college exam and get a PhD. I rarely hear of a psychotherapist using psychotherapy to treat someone with a psychiatric problem.

Oh well, perspective is crucial.