The Logic of False Beliefs

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Avatar for AeliaLuna
1 year ago

To survive, humans require a somewhat accurate vision of the world. If your model of reality is vastly different from reality, you will find it difficult to conduct productive activities on a daily basis. The human intellect, on the other hand, is concerned with more than just precision and truth. Humans appear to have a strong yearning to be a part of something bigger than themselves.

It's crucial to know the truth about a situation, but it's also important to stay in a tribe. While these two desires frequently function well together, they do occasionally clash. In many cases, having a strong social connection is more beneficial to your daily life than knowing the reality of a particular subject or thought.

We don't always believe what we're told because it's true. We believe things to make ourselves look good in front of the people we care about.

False beliefs can be advantageous in social situations even if they are untrue in truth

For lack of a better term, we may call this strategy "factually inaccurate, but socially accurate," because when given the option, individuals often prefer friends and family above facts.This understanding not only explains why we might keep our mouths shut at a dinner party or turn a blind eye when our parents say something hurtful, but it also suggests a better strategy to persuade others to rethink their opinions.

Facts do not persuade us to change our minds. Friendship makes a difference

Persuading someone to alter their views is really the same as persuading them to switch tribes. They run the risk of losing social relationships if they renounce their convictions. You can't expect someone to change their viewpoint if their community is also taken away. You must provide them with a safe haven. Nobody wants their worldview to be shattered if the result is loneliness.

People's ideas can be changed through becoming friends with them, integrating them into your tribe, and bringing them into your circle. They can now modify their minds without fear of being socially rejected.

Why False Ideas Persist

Another explanation for the persistence of terrible ideas is that people continue to talk about them.

Any concept dies in the absence of sound. An unspoken or unwritten notion dies with the person who created it. Only by repeating ideas can they be recalled. Only when they are repeated can they be believed.

The best thing that can happen to a lousy concept is for it to fade into obscurity. Sharing a good idea is the best thing that can happen to it. It reminds me of a phrase by Tyler Cowen: "Spend as little time as possible talking about how other people are wrong." Feed the good ideas and let the bad ones starve to death.

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Avatar for AeliaLuna
1 year ago


I find these true. Talking about friendship and change of mind, it works so easily in changing or adapting to a particular 'trait' when in the midst of friends. Seeing them practice it makes it more easier for conviction

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