Archives For Quick Thought

Paradox & Creative

September 2, 2014 — Leave a comment

“I have devoted 30 years of research to how creative people live and work, to make more understandable the mysterious process by which they come up with new ideas and new things. If I had to express in one word what makes their personalities different from others, it’s complexity. They show tendencies of thought and action that in most people are segregated. They contain contradictory extremes; instead of being an individual, each of them is a multitude.”

Mihaly

Imagination is one of the more mysterious capabilities of the human mind. How is it possible to conjure up images, feelings, or concepts that we can’t perceive through our senses? How can we arrive at perfectly workable solutions without the benefit of logical thought? Is imagination learnable, or is it only the preserve of eccentric artists and mad scientists?

Bias

August 22, 2014 — Leave a comment

This is merely one variety of Cognitive Bias, a large category of logical pitfalls that play havoc with our intuition. Other traps include negativity bias, in which bad is perceived to be stronger than good; perceptual defense, which causes us to ignore inconvenient facts; hindsight bias, the illusion that we knew it all along; the gamblers fallacy, or believing in “streaks” or in “being due” when no such possibilities exit; the anchoring effect, causing us to weigh a single piece of evidence far too heavily; belief bias, in which we evaluate an argument based on the believability of its conclusion; and the availability heuristic, which causes us to estimate the likelihood of something according to what is more available in memory, favoring events that are vivid or emotionally charged.

Confirmation bias is not always self-inflicted, since its built into the fabric of culture. Anthropologist Bloomer describes culture as a seamless web of beliefs, all working together so they seem natural, universal, even unquestionable.

I was very touched by what Gandhi said in 1938, he was one of the greatest humanist known to mankind.

Let the Jews who claim to be the chosen race prove their title by choosing the way of non-violence for vindicating their position on earth. Every country is their home, including Palestine, not by aggression but by loving service. A Jewish friend has sent me a book called The Jewish Contribution to Civilization by Cecil Roth. It gives a record of what the Jews have done to enrich the world’s literature, art, music, drama, science, medicine, agriculture, etc. Given the will, the Jew can refuse to be treated as the outcast of the West, to be despised or patronized. He can command the attention and respect of the world by being the chosen creation of God, instead of sinking to the brute who is forsaken by God. They can add to their many contributions the surpassing contribution of non-violent action.