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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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.