“The Limits of Everyday Thinking”

I found this section of the book the most relatable, almost every child grew up with the traditions of Santa Clause so you wouldn’t think that the believe in a fictional character could actually be detrimental. The book describes five reasons why a belief like the one that children have in “Father Christmas” can lead to several significant issues. The first issue would be to accept an idea just because it is common knowledge. We used to accept the idea of slavery but does that mean it was okay? The same idea can be applied to many scientific theories as well. The second reasoning is an acceptance of tradition. Because there is so much invested in the idea, it must be true, correct? This reminds me of religions, where there isn’t substantial evidence towards them but because they have a much established following and churches all over the world it is seen as true. It is understandable to think that because so many people believe in the traditions of a religion that one should do so as well. Another issue is personal experiences, which can be easily fabricated. You may overgeneralize your experience, remember it wrong, be fooled in some way, or overall just want to believe in it. There must be more widely accepted evidence and more eye witnesses to something for it to be true. The forth idea ┬áis about selective observations and evidence. It can be easy for someone to fabricate evidence that is seemingly true, but you have to think about it from all perspectives. The book uses the example of milk and cookies that Santa has eaten in the morning, but that does not necessarily mean that Santa was the one to eat them. And the last issue with these beliefs is biased opinions. It is seemingly harmless and no one would want to ruin the idea of Santa Clause and gift receiving on Christmas because the children get so much joy out of it. This can also be a potential factor that would blind someones beliefs, they believe it to be true because they do not want it to be false. All of these reasons can be used for something much more serious than Santa Clause. Ideas become inaccurate and require a social scientific approach to research it correctly.

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