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← Anecdote vs. fact

DavidXanaos's Avatar Jump to comment 1 by DavidXanaos

Thats indeed a very interesting point.

My opinion on the Mather is that in the past when our species evolved the only means of propagating informations was through speech, so basically through anecdotes. Thats today still true for children and in booth cases if the person don't takes the word of an other person for true by default it can lead to putting oneself in danger. Do you really have to test it out yourself that orange red berries are poison? Or a more modern example do you really have to check that electricity will stop your hart if applied (in)properly? Of cause no, but what you can do today that in the past wasn't possible is to get confirmation from independent sources, you also can apply your reason and knowledge ans assess the probability of a statement. But on th other side you can only be an expert on a small range of things and those you can not verify everything your own. We are doomed to rely on other people telling the truth. Or wen can belie in conspiracy theories and trust no one.

So assuming by default that the other person is not lying is anchored at the base of our social interaction protocols.

Also I think it is likely that first there was language and than there was lying, so the parts of our brain that take informations from other peers at face value are older than parts that enable us to communicate invented informations and the parts that assess the correctness of transmitted informations are the newest.

So what we need to compensate for this hardwiring is s proper education in the childhood that would teach people to think sceptically always apply reason and have a good scientific knowledge.

David X.

Tue, 20 Sep 2011 17:40:24 UTC | #873198