08 JAN 2018 by ideonexus

 Our Life is What We Pay Attention To

When our attention is lured, herded, and commandeered in such a way, our full human potential is profoundly subverted. “Our life experience,” William James once said, “will equal what we have paid attention to, whether by choice or default.” We become what we attend to — nothing more, nothing less. A steady and exclusive stream of reality TV, entertainment gossip, social media chatter, and “breaking news” about the latest celebrity scandal or Trump’s most recent tweets — all...
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25 MAY 2016 by ideonexus

 Political Pragmatism

A reasonable and logical way of doing things or of thinking about problems that is based on dealing with specific situations instead of on ideas and theories. An approach to philosophy, primarily held by American philosophers, which holds that the truth or meaning of a statement is to be measured by its practical (i.e., pragmatic) consequences. William James and John Dewey were pragmatists. Pragmatism in common usage may mean simply a practical approach to problems and affairs. But it’s al...
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30 DEC 2013 by ideonexus

 Three Types of Faith

philosopher Paul Kurtz, in his book The Transcendental Temptation, defines three distinctly different kinds of faith, derived from the amount (or total lack) of evidence drawn upon to support it. Kurtz defines the first kind as “intransigent faith.” By this is meant faith that will not be affected by any sort of contrary evidence, no matter how strong. My own experience with some few persons who persist in believing in certain paranormal claims that have been conclusively proven false ena...
Folksonomies: faith empricism belief
Folksonomies: faith empricism belief
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Type I is belief in what is proven false, type II is belief in what has no evidence, and type III is empirical scientifically-proven belief.

24 DEC 2013 by ideonexus

 A Second is Subjective

How many seconds are there in a lifetime? 10^9 sec A second is an arbitrary time unit, but one that is based on our experience. Our visual system is bombarded by snapshots at a rate of around three per second, caused by rapid eye movements called saccades. Athletes often win or lose a race by a fraction of a second. If you earned a dollar for every second in your life, you would be a billionaire. However, a second can feel like a minute in front of an audience, and a quiet weekend can disap...
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Terrence Sejnowski on how a moment of time is a subjective experience that grows longer the more novelty is packed into it.

29 MAR 2013 by ideonexus

 Belief VS Evidence

Our own view of what is and is not possible in reality affects how we perceive identical evidence. But that view shifts with time, and thus, evidence that might at one point seem meaningless can come to hold a great deal of meaning. Think of how many ideas seemed outlandish when first put forward, seemed so impossible that they couldn’t be true: the earth being round; the earth going around the sun; the universe being made up almost entirely of something that we can’t see, dark matter and...
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Many great minds have been taken in by supernatural ideas.

09 JUN 2011 by ideonexus

 The Holiness of Monarch Butterflies

As we reached the tiny clump of trees festooned with butterflies as thick as jungle foliage, we Yanks buzzed about, snapping pics, taking notes, storing up impressions with which to later regale our friends back home. The Mexicans by and large sat silently in the forest, kids in laps, eyes somberly fixed on the massed monarchs. It was difficult to read their emotions, but 1 believe that many of the Mexican visitors to the Chincua Monarch Sanctuary were driven by the same urge that might have ...
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A reverence instilled by appreciating nature is the only thing that will save it.