08 March 2009

You Skeptics think you're so smart!

Or some other variant thereof.

Such as "And you know better than all the Gedolim??!"

Rabbi Gil Student states here
You think you're the smartest and most unbiased person on the planet. That may or may not be so, but I'm not going to set aside my judgment for yours.

It happens to be that I did grow thinking I was smart. After all I overheard my mother telling a friend, "My little BHB must be brilliant, he got a 95 on his IQ Test!"

Well, as it turns out for once the believers got it right. The Gedolim are way smarter than us skeptics.

Michael Shermer tells us about Planck's Problem, after physicist Max Planck, who made this observation on what must happen for innovation to occur in science: "
An important scientific innovation rarely makes its way by gradually winning over and converting its opponents: it rarely happens that Saul becomes Paul. What does happen is that its opponents gradually die out and that the growing generation is familiarized with the idea from the beginning"

And he states further :

Psychologist David Perkins conducted an interesting correlational study in which he found a strong positive correlation between intelligence (measured by a standard IQ test) and the ability to give reasons for taking a point of view and defending that position; he also found a strong negative correlation between intelligence and the ability to consider other alternatives. That is, the higher the IQ, the greater the potential for ideological immunity. Ideological immunity is built into the scientific enterprise, where it functions as a filter against potentially overwhelming novelty."

It seems it's the smart ones who are able to cook up all sorts of tangled and intricate answers to defend their existing positions. It's the smart ones who are able to create Toras Lukshin to avoid confronting new truths

So, Rabboisai, there you have it. I agree, I'm NOT so smart after all.

A freilichen Purim.

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