Evolution Of Critical Thinking



thank you very much Matthew Warner I'm a grad student at Liberty University I have one one question going back to ethics and morality you essentially said that the Darwinian reason we have morality is that back in the day you had cousins and people knew one bit then to reciprocate in order to act like that you would have to make decisions decisions would have to be based on critical thinking I was wondering if you have a Darwinian response or explanation for how critical thinking relates to Darwinian is right I think I understand you your your the question is not really about morality that the question is about is there a similar Darwinian account of critical thinking which is at the basis of your explanation for morality in my mind and my explanation for everything else busy will be as well not not not just morality well I mean quick critical thinking is is something which isn't universally an attribute of the human mind I I don't think it's very very hard to imagine that I imagine ways in which critical thinking could have benefited the survival of our ancestors I mean I I think that taking a rational view of evidence would probably have helped our ancestors to survive in a world of the saber-tooth Tigers and ice ages and drying up water holes and all the other things which all the other hazards which threatened life I would have thought rather the reverse that the problem that faces us is how do we explain uncritical lack of thinking why is there such a lot of that about and I I mean I do have a chapter explaining that but I should have thought that was a that was a rather harder problem than than the one about about critical thinking hi my name is Carl Swenson and I'm gonna tip my hand right off the start like the other brave Kushner's and say that if if theories and ideas around things like intelligent design creationism are scientifically all but dead they just haven't fallen over yet then I see something else waiting in the wings scientifically that needs that would could be a problem for science and that's until I ask your opinion about this thing's like you've used the word mind a lot we think of mind as some dimensionless thing in the middle of our head which tells us what to do and is separate from the brain which is similar to the soul another popular notion so what is science or philosophy at this point have to say about this about about the mind about yeah about the existence of it yeah or the soul or the popular notions well I mean might might my view would be a materialistic one not everybody's would and and my view would be that mind and soul and consciousness and all those sorts of words are they describe something which is a manifestation of the material brain and doesn't have any existence outside material brains where material brains could at some future date perhaps include silicon brains not not just neuronal brains but there has to be some sort of physical medium doubtless highly complicated highly interconnected a network of of complicated wiring diagram which by some means which neurophysiologists are now working on results in the phenomena which psychologists study and which we colloquially give names like mind and evil so – so I don't think that the mind is an immaterial thing that has any existence outside the material world

41 thoughts on “Evolution Of Critical Thinking”

  1. I wonder if the people who get all caught up in the idea of "mind" in terms of religion realize that animals also have minds.  I've had people try to convince me that animals not only didn't have minds but also didn't have emotions, and how stupid is that?  Creationists will grasp at the frailest of straws.

  2. @Valanor1 Yeah, free will. Great. Your monster-god doesn't "enforce" his decisions, he just punishes you for making the wrong one. And exactly what part did free will play in the fate of the souls of Native Americans who lived and died for the 1500 or so years when there was NO possibility of them hearing the "Good News" and getting salvation? It's a very good thing there's no evidence that sky-tyrant of yours exists.

  3. @GoblinXXX God has set the day of judgement, until this time He works in the hearts of those who are willing to choose Him and know Him. God withheld his power in giving us freewill so He does not enforce our decisions. Time is necessary in order for humanity to be drawn to make those decisions which will seal their ultimate fate. It is logically coherent.

  4. (Audience member) "Golly Perfesser Dawkins, how could being SMART have helped people survive?" Yeah, great question, kid. Then again, apparently YOU managed to get into college without that quality, so maybe you have a point.

  5. @Valanor1 "Waiting" to save as many "as he can" before the last judgement? Isn't he omnipotent? What's he "waiting" for? Isn't the time of the last judgement (or it happening at all) HIS decision? You've painted yourself in a corner with this "all powerful god" who also doesn't seem to have a choice in what he does.

  6. @Wharwulif There's also a good chance that "god" created a universe full of fusion engines to make gold (or something), and everything else is just an unwanted side effect of the process. 😉

  7. If you concede to the possibility of God then it isn't hard to infer that He would intervene in his world. The bible says that He is waiting to save as many as he can before the last judgement, then He will "make all things new' and do away with death and suffering. The most profound miracle for me is the abiding presence of God, comforting me in times of turmoil, that is more precious than physical healing.

  8. @Tavereen Reaching? Embarrass? I have not embarrassed my self at all. I have only been giving my point of view not trying to embarrass myself. If you ask me your seeming kind of emmarrassed.

  9. @natureman97 — In this case no, it is not a factor in being successful. All of the morale in the world won't do you a lick of good unless you know how and where to find water.

    I'm reminded of an old saying. "One pair of hands at work is worth a million clasped in prayer." And it's true, prayer accomplishes nothing.

  10. @natureman97 — Morale is irrelevant to the act of finding water. What is relevant is the knowledge of where water might be, the ability to recognize such places, and the ability to extract the water. Morale doesn't factor into it. And no, prayer is not a form of critical thinking.

  11. @Tavereen Thats funny because us religous people dont pray to God for water, we would pray to God that we would find more water as we are searching, so techniqualy we are more critical thinkers because praying wouyld boost our moral letting us look for water more than you uther guys so the "searcher prayer" is more likly to survive than the "not pray but searcher"!

  12. lol, youve been debating yourself most of the time. look at these two retards arguing: "the Universe existed 1000 years ago. It was not created a moment ago…" "all conditions are initialized to be consistent with the conclusion that the Universe is billions of years old. Yet in fact the Universe is only moments old."

    oh wait, thats just you arguing with yourself… hahaha.

  13. unfortunately, you were too retarded to realize you proclaimed something for which there is a lot of evidence. seems you did so by mistake, but you did so nonetheless. i dont get retards like you, no. unfortunately for you, i dont assume someone means the opposite of what they say. sorry.

  14. this is what you claim now, but if you read your original comment, it says the following: " I proclaim that the Universe existed 1000 years ago. It was not created a moment ago…" thats what you wrote–you now claim the exact opposite, it seems. if youre too stupid to even follow your own comments, you shouldnt even bother trying to debate people.

  15. no. you proclaimed, "the universe existed 1000 years ago," and that "it was not created a moment ago…" this would indicate that it is at least 1000 years old. if you meant something else, you shouldve written something else.

  16. no. there is evidence for that. look into how people have calculated the earths age (older than 1000 years), for instance, which necessarily exists within the universe. the belief in a universe of at least 1000 years of age is well-founded.

    having dreams is very common, so are dreams about vacation destinations. many precedents make such a belief credible. if no one had ever heard of dreams or tahiti, and you couldnt demonstrate that these existed, then that would be different.

  17. wrong. delusions are unfounded beliefs. if you cannot demonstrate something exists, then to proclaim its existence is delusional. its the same principle applied to people who claim theyve seen elvis, leprechauns, etc. as soon as you can provide evidence for god, santa, or unicorns, people who believe in such things will no longer be called delusional. its that simple.

  18. wrong. a delusion is a mistaken or unfounded opinion or idea. belief in god is unfounded. if someone believes they talk to elvis' ghost, but can produce no evidence for this, they will be dismissed as delusional. likewise, if they claim elvis is still alive, and cite a half eaten, fried, peanut butter and banana sandwich as evidence, they will be dismissed as delusional again.

  19. depends on of hes by himself. if its two cavemen, the theist one is more likely to survive because hes gonna sit on his ass, safe n sound, praying, and the atheist is going run out and get water for everybody. and then the theist can thank god for the gift of water, and refer to the atheist as a vessel for gods will.

  20. @kmsoileau

    For one who advises me to "study debating techniques" you sure don't seem to know anything about them yourself. You failed to recognize that a false dichotomy is not a logical fallacy when presented in the form of a thought experiment and now you bring personal insults into this. I ask you to maintain proper decorum. I did not insult you, nor will I, but I expect the same treatment from you.

  21. @kmsoileau

    Of course it's a false dichotomy, it's not meant to mirror what really happened. It's merely a thought experiment, and false dichotomies are acceptable in thought experiments. I proposed the question merely to induce thought, the only way it would have been a logical fallacy is if I implied that this actually happened. Please, study debating techniques yourself. I've been doing this for quite a while now, I think that I've got a handle on it.

  22. @kmsoileau No, I wouldn't say that, because modern physicists don't say they know string theory is correct. At the moment, they are still working on it.

  23. @kmsoileau really, i thought it meant that "those who believe in a deity" cannot prove that the deity exists, hence the delusion…delusion being defined as: something that is falsely or delusively believed or propagated.

  24. @kmsoileau

    Pascal's way of thinking makes all who agree with him a hypocrite's.
    And if you had one once of Richard Dawkins brains you would agree.

  25. His answer was true.
    There used to be much debate in Philosophy about the mind and Qualia but most Philosophy professors today are Physicalists. We simply have no reason to believe that any part of us is non-physical anymore. I mean before we were aware of the brain and computer programming, the soul seemed logical, but not anymore. You can watch Shelly Kagans Yale lectures on death on YouTube if you want, he talks a little about it, or take a Mind and Body Philosophy unit at University.

  26. I don`t like the hysterical laughter. Critical thinking is important but we do not always question everything in every-day-life. The audience seemed arrogant. By the way: I am an atheist myself but sometimes our own kind behaves weird too….

  27. Jesus Christ these fucking people just clap for anything don't they. Gets really irritating when you're watching Dawkins' videos.

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