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Rationality

Beyond Rawls' Fiction: The Veil of Ignorance Is Real

Harold Lloyd | Posted 03.02.2016 | Politics
Harold Lloyd

Whether "liberal" or "conservative," a rational person who admits the veil of ignorance understands the importance of fairness and of general concern for the welfare not only of himself but of others who differ from his present status and characteristics.

Autopilot vs. Intentional System: The Rider and the Elephant

Gleb Tsipursky | Posted 01.04.2016 | GPS for the Soul
Gleb Tsipursky

This article first appeared on the blog of Intentional Insights, a nonprofit organization that empowers people to refine and reach their goals by prov...

Calming Ourselves Down

Terry Newell | Posted 12.27.2015 | Politics
Terry Newell

The overwhelming attention to presidential polls and political catfights, for example, has relegated serious discussion of education, jobs, the environment and the vulnerability of infrastructure -- to name a few issues -- to the back burner in our national discourse.

6 Awesome Things About the Quran

Ro Waseem | Posted 11.02.2015 | Religion
Ro Waseem

When I first started reading the Quran, my paradigm was drastically different to what it is now. Back then, whether a particular interpretation or belief was rational or not wasn't a prerequisite for believing in it. "It was the word of God, after all!", I thought, "Dare I question it?"

Making Irrational Rational

Nelson Saiers | Posted 07.28.2015 | Arts
Nelson Saiers

On this Rational Pi Day, consider some of our irrational societal behaviors. Begin to take the first steps towards quelling those and taking more rational approaches to the issues that will impact us all.

Walking on Water with Giant Green Frogs

Shan Wells | Posted 04.11.2015 | Politics
Shan Wells

At this point, I can hear readers of faith saying: "But you can't blame religion for murder. People kill whether they are religious or not!" Certainly, they do. But religion is one the most insidiously lethal accelerators of violence this side of an unfaithful lover.

We Need Free Speech Because We Are Ignorant

Michael Shammas | Posted 03.16.2015 | Politics
Michael Shammas

We are all ignorant; none of us have all the answers. That fact is not only a strong argument in favor of free speech and against those who would suppress it -- it is a spur toward greater wisdom.

#8 Beliefs that Make Liberal America Weak: Barriers to the Source of Moral and Spiritual Passions

Andy Schmookler | Posted 12.15.2014 | Politics
Andy Schmookler

Why does that the line from Yeats apply to America in our times? "The best lack all conviction, while the worst / Are filled with a passionate intensity."

The Morality of Artificial Intelligence and the Three Laws of Transhumanism

Zoltan Istvan | Posted 12.02.2014 | Technology
Zoltan Istvan

I'm all for development of superior machine intelligence that can help the world out with its brilliant analytical skills. But programming AI with mammalian ideas, modern-day philosophies, and the fallibilities of the human spirit is dangerous and will possibly lead to total chaos.

We Must Recover America's Hopeful Spirit

Michael Shammas | Posted 11.18.2014 | Politics
Michael Shammas

While we used to feel inspired by our country, we now feel disenchanted. While we used to hope, now we doubt. And rather than listening to leaders who unite us, too often we pay heed to demagogues like Rush Limbaugh whose sole source of profit comes from division and discord.

A World Future Society Conference Speech: Everyone Faces a Transhumanist Wager

Zoltan Istvan | Posted 09.30.2014 | Technology
Zoltan Istvan

Ladies and gentlemen, we have a problem. Each one of us has a problem. In fact, no matter where you go on the planet, no matter who you find, every single person on Earth has this same dire problem.

'Less Violent' Does Not Have to Mean 'Apathetic'

Marc Gopin | Posted 04.27.2014 | Politics
Marc Gopin

Americans may be getting less violent, but we should absolutely not be getting more apathetic and isolationist. The world is a dangerous place with some very violent people in it, as well as some very unfortunate wars between groups that have been set against each other by proxies.

How to Rationally Read and Write Like a Moderate (Even if You're Not One)

Troy Campbell | Posted 03.24.2014 | Politics
Troy Campbell

If you have an intelligent opinion, and don't mind the fact that someone will probably call you a racist/bigot/traitor for saying it, then share it or blog it.

How To Be An Effective Problem Solver

Michelle Roya Rad | Posted 01.24.2014 | Healthy Living
Michelle Roya Rad

Good problem solvers are good thinkers. They have less drama and problems to begin with and don't get overly emotional when faced with a problem. They usually see problems as challenges and life experiences and try to stand above them, objectively.

Alan Greenspan discovers human beings are flawed

Robert Teitelman | Posted 01.23.2014 | Business
Robert Teitelman

What is there to say about Alan Greenspan, who at 87 is out flogging his new book, "The Map and the Territory: Risk, Human Nature and the Future of Fo...

Is It Rational to Be Selfish

Denise Cummins, Ph.D. | Posted 01.23.2014 | Impact
Denise Cummins, Ph.D.

The take-home message from this body of research is this: What counts as a fair transaction depends in large part on perceived relative social status -- where the parties stand in their perceived hierarchy and how they believe they got there.

A Rationality Shutdown

Robert Koehler | Posted 01.23.2014 | Politics
Robert Koehler

We're continuing to raid, bomb and terrorize Fourth World countries and pointlessly harvest global metadata. We're still "completing our mission" in Afghanistan. We're just phasing out the government functions that have value.

All Paths Lead to Magical Thinking

Matthew Hutson | Posted 11.19.2013 | Science
Matthew Hutson

You believe in God or astrology or a purpose in life because you apply ideas about people -- that they have thoughts and intentions -- to the natural world. What has not been clarified is exactly how various cognitive biases interact to produce specific ideas about the supernatural -- until now.

Why I Am Not A Believer

T. Thorn Coyle | Posted 08.06.2013 | Religion
T. Thorn Coyle

When I say I am not a believer, it doesn't mean I believe nothing. It is that belief is not central to my religious and spiritual life. As a matter of fact, belief holds little importance to me at all.

Everything Is a Matter of Perspective

Mark Baer | Posted 08.03.2013 | Divorce
Mark Baer

In the event that you will end up paying spousal or child support to your spouse in the divorce generally means that you were already paying them such support during the course of your marriage.

Deliberative Democracy Outreasons Enlightened Dictatorship

David Moshman | Posted 05.15.2013 | Politics
David Moshman

A recently published study compared tiny democracies to tiny dictatorships. The democracies, on average, were more rational.

New Year and Old Yearnings

Jag Bhalla | Posted 03.04.2013 | Healthy Living
Jag Bhalla

Certain virtues are certainly rational. It is an unskilled use of reason to think otherwise. Or to fail to at least try to act accordingly.

Fear of Climate Change May Finally Be Trumping Ideological Denial

David Ropeik | Posted 09.10.2012 | Green
David Ropeik

The brain relies on several instincts to help us survive, and sometimes they conflict. One fear can literally contradict another. That's the case with climate change. The bad news is that at this point, the wrong ones are winning. The good news is, things may be changing.

Analytic Thinking Erodes Religious Belief

Rob Brooks | Posted 07.01.2012 | Religion
Rob Brooks

Although there is considerable disagreement about whether education kills religious faith, people's chances of identifying as religious believers declines with scientific education and education in rational thinking.

How Much Do We Value Our Values?

Rabbi Geoffrey A. Mitelman | Posted 04.23.2012 | Religion
Rabbi Geoffrey A. Mitelman

And perhaps the greatest impact religion has had on the world is that it helps us move the discussion of values from "costs and benefits" to "right and wrong."