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 Common sense and scepticism

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Jamie Clubb
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PostSubject: Common sense and scepticism   Thu Oct 09, 2008 5:32 pm

It is quite remarkable to think that common sense and scepticism would have any antagonism towards each other. After all both support the concept of common sense, which I define as a combination of intuition and obvious data, and consider myself to be a sceptic, which I define as a critical and rational thinker. This is not to say that I haven't got loads of other apparent paradoxes in my personality, but rather that I see my form of scepticism as being commonsensical and my scepticism as being common sense!

Only yesterday I inadvertantly sparked off a con-theo and one that had completely bought into the whole package - from UFOs all the way through to secret societies controlling the world through a pyramid of influence. The problem with his type of illogical arguing was that he believed everything was a conspiracy, like the religious extremists anything that didn't conform to his line of argument was part of the conspiracy. The whole thing reminded me of the philosopher George Edward Moore's argument "Here is a Hand". This argument was against those termed as philosophical sceptics, in particular those who argued that there was no proof of an external world. Such "sceptics" made arguments that the world was all a figment of our imagination (Matrix anyone?) or that everything could have been created in the last five minutes with us appearing with false memories. I guess we would call these people pseudosceptics. Here is the Wiki entry on Moore's argument:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Here_is_a_hand

Moore's argument for me pretty much spells out the foundation from where all rational debate can begin. Those who argue that the external world is all literally an illusion are the same as those who argue that everything is a conspiracy. It is an impossible position to debate from.

However, some scientists have attacked the idea of common sense. Einstein famously said "Common sense is the collection of prejudices acquired by age eighteen." You can understand the frustration if you are breaking new ground and up against a lot of hostility from the accepted norm. Nevertheless, my common sense does hinder my positive ideas regarding progress, creativity or being open minded.

Wiki entry on common sense:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_sense
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PostSubject: Re: Common sense and scepticism   Thu Oct 09, 2008 6:07 pm

Interesting topic,

my common sense tells me where all gonna die and since no one knows whats gonna happen then, lets crack on Smile

Den.

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Rob
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PostSubject: Re: Common sense and scepticism   Fri Oct 10, 2008 2:58 am

It's a weird one... There seems to be differing degrees of common sense - Each persons reality is different from the next. I guess it's partially down to hardwiring.

But some of these guys just never look beyond their own reasoning.
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Jamie Clubb
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PostSubject: Re: Common sense and scepticism   Fri Oct 10, 2008 11:53 am

What I am saying is that common sense gives us something to start with and where we can then critically think. This is opposed to the other way around where you question everything right down to whether or not we all really exist and never get anywhere.

As I said before my definition - and it is up for review as always - is that common sense = intuition + obvious data.
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PostSubject: Re: Common sense and scepticism   Fri Oct 10, 2008 11:56 am

Yep, I agree with that.
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PostSubject: Re: Common sense and scepticism   Fri Oct 10, 2008 4:19 pm

Being an awkward get here but whats your definition of ' obvious data?'

Den.

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PostSubject: Re: Common sense and scepticism   Sat Oct 11, 2008 10:35 pm

Challenge away that's my approach! Okay, being an ambiguous vague martial art type here but here goes: Obvious data is the material world. What I can see and feel, what I know through experience to be "true". Remember, I have a very individualistic approach to coaching so what is obvious data to me may vary with you, but I have found that most rational people have very similar experiences.
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PostSubject: Re: Common sense and scepticism   Sun Oct 12, 2008 3:28 pm

Glad you sid most rational people and what you believe to be true, as you know, perhaps you posted it, but some people are sceptical of what truth is, especially those damned philosopher types Laughing

Im with you on that Jamie, all that airy fairy 'you cant disprove it therefore its true' malarkey, does not sit very well with me tbh.

Thaks for the clarification,

Den.

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PostSubject: Re: Common sense and scepticism   Sun Oct 12, 2008 6:52 pm

Quote :
Im with you on that Jamie, all that airy fairy 'you cant disprove it therefore its true' malarkey, does not sit very well with me tbh.

Me neither. All sorts of things come out under pressure testing, which has further persuaded me that effecient SD has to be taught in an individualistic way - it is also the way sport is going, business has gone and I have even heard the military begin to embrace it! Surprised

Sensible self defence tactic selection is all based on probability rather than possibility, but in order for a student to decide what is probable for them they need to test themselves. This brings out my version of common sense.
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