Humans are naturally delusional because we live in an “optical delusion” as Einstein called it. What we think is intelligence, especially concerning our own thoughts, are usually misguided opinions and beliefs that we have adopted from others. It’s amazing that even when one presents an idea that counters known facts, humans will still parrot the words of the self-assured … and by magic, the confidence boils over into their rhetoric. There is nothing intelligently said when quoting the ideas that someone else has completely destroyed of facts, and then to demonstrate additional confidence, would seem a bit silly.
Welcome to the silly la la land of American culture. A place that likes to spread lies and deceit to make its people speak unintelligently. We make it easy for ignorance to take root and harder for real intelligence to develop. I contend that only the honesty of the uncorrupted scientists can fix this problem by standing next to the presidential seal.
We should remind ourselves that seeking intelligence requires hard work and is never granted by someone else. Higher education supports this principle by requiring a thesis to be completely original in thought to obtain a high mark. For a thesis of appreciation, one must take a theory and examine the multiple contributions which helped to create the theory, and then form an original idea that clarifies or augments it to a deeper meaning, or uplifts the theory to a new and more accurate realm. This is called critical thinking. Basically the message is – you have nothing to add if you do not know what the hell you are talking about. As a society, we need to start teaching critical thinking at a younger age for it contains the possibility of eliminating a lot of problems in future generations.
My father taught me the principle of how to think and use the mind to its full benefit. Listen and learn and never stop is something his mathematician mind drilled into me before I go spouting off; a lost art of child raising. He’d always say think like a scientist and leave your mind open to absorb more facts, and then analysis but do not adhere, for new facts will come along and things will change. His proudest moment was the day I finally beat him at chess. I can still remember that sly smile on his face while watching my clever 12-year-old facts take his baseline away. He was on the run from my intellect and enjoying it. He understood that I was not applying his game through my prior parroting, but generating my own game of abstract moves and thought. Hence, his smile.
Critical thinking is a simple teaching, but since society does not apply the lesson throughout the K-12 system, most grow up to chatter as if they are all experts. Well, guess what? Most humans and even the highly educated are not experts in the things that really matter, like: sociology, psychology, and the sciences as a short list. Consequently, our economic, business and communication degrees, move society to a bunch of useless or idiotic facts that the masses are parroting. Now here’s the sad part, many of our social facts are essentially false due to misinformation and half-truths; e.g., what do you think is the real unemployment rate? No wonder this stuff requires high levels of arrogance or plain old confidence to express to others. And the final result, we endure a complete lack of intelligent conversation within the majority of society. You want proof: our adult world is filled with mindless talk shows that are superficial and empty of reflective thought and substance. But the networks certainly pitch them as intelligent and thoughtful while pushing the star quality of a supposedly skilled individual. It’s not hard to guess which network is the worst for the hen house.
The self-blinding problem of thinking that we have skills is detailed in a 1999 study by Justin Kruger and David Dunning of Cornell University. To quickly summarize: the study states in some humans, what they think is a high performance level of their skill, is actually a delusional awareness unrelated to the facts of their ability. One may think they are a great singer, while they are actually breaking windows. (Yep, the American Idol scenario.) It seems the more arrogant one is about their skill, a higher ratio of lack of skill is the truth, compared to the humbly skilled, who understand their ability with clarity and contain a more accurate self-assessment. This would mean that the humbly skilled have a less distorted base of reality and a better grasp of critical thinking. It’s a working theory in psychology known as the Dunning-Kruger effect.
Since the Dunning-Kruger effect is a self-assessment error produced by a perception, and perception is thought, we can also apply the effect to overall intelligence. It would explain why humans think they are intelligent and cannot measure their own intelligence properly, due to self-delusions and a distorted base of reality. Many humans feel intelligent and can explain their intelligence rather thoroughly, but like the singer breaking windows, what they are explaining is stupidity. They are delusional about their personal knowledge and think that they have all the details shored up, when in fact, their details are far removed from the truth. This leads to a stagnation of learning directly from the belief that their delusional knowledge is fact. They suffer the most from a social system of falsehoods.
I argue that delusional knowledge is the widest of norms, simply because we live in an “optical delusion” and cannot recognize it as such, therefore; most humans are excessively delusional. This would make it entirely appropriate to interpret self-delusions and a distorted base of reality as unintelligent, which as a whole, would make our species a very dumb breed and perhaps the longest fact of human history. Is that not where we stand? Aren’t we surrounded by stupidity both now and from our past? I think it’s pretty easy to see that humans do a lot more stupid things than smart things, and would explain why the world is in such a calamitous condition once again.
Could delusional knowledge explain why religion is so backwards to the times? Could this explain why we have global change deniers who do not understand what the scientists are saying? Could this also explain a politician spouting off what are essentially public opinions concerning economics, military defense, and the social ramifications of policy, while integrating blatant lies into the conversation because they’ve experienced that the general public is not smart enough to figure things out and can easily build delusional knowledge.
May I introduce you to Agnotology: the study of willful acts to spread confusion and deceit. The world now operates under this principle and on a fulltime basis. News Media, religions, governments, politics, corporations, you name it, many in any arena are practicing willful deceit. Most of the propaganda organizations produce is a slight or highly manipulated fact from their own research. In many cases, the critical fact is left out and a secondary fact is highlighted, all because the decisive detail does not represent their agenda and must be modified, so, they produce deceptions around the fact that they do like. With today’s mass communication capabilities and the couch potato’s unwillingness to search for all the facts, it’s much easier to embed twists of information into the general population. Organizations ultimately rely on the Dunning-Kruger effect of self-delusion. They understand that the masses have disregarded the hard work of intelligence building and chose the easy method of appearing intelligent through parroting. With this process, many humans instantly become the unwittingly willful to spread confusion and deceit. This leads to a society that is no longer debating the facts in certain public arenas, but debating the stripped down version of facts as if they were thorough and conclusive, just as the instigators intended.
Since global warming is the most important issue of our time, my example of agnotology offers the prevailing fact that is almost completely cut out of the American conversation. Whether intentionally left out by the manipulating, or through incomplete research by the unintelligent. The missing detail permits the newspapers, radio and TV outlets, to question whether man is responsible for the change occurring to Earth. Americans are debating a fully researched and answered question by the international scientific community, and reveals the power of willful deceit.
The facade planted in our public discourse is that Earth will naturally increase and decrease in temperature, and used as an accuracy to side with Earth’s history of ice ages and warming trends. But that is not the final contention the scientists have detailed. The science states, this modern day increase in temperature is not natural and its sudden spike has never occurred in Earth’s history before. Earth’s natural cycle is a SLOW increase or decrease in temperature – not an abrupt spike. The abrupt spike in Earth’s temperature is 100% manmade and why scientists have sounded the alarm. But this critical fact is seldom talked about by the media and other public opinion arenas, for it has been exorcised from the dialog. The Dunning-Kruger effect applied to thought, has run its course and ignorance prevails. Now most debate centers around the melting of ice and the potential for flooding and weather changes of which many humans are experts on, but the decisive data that clearly explains the unprecedented spike of degrees caused by industrialization, willfully ignored and feathered off to a rarely mentioned la la land. This camouflages the urgency of our approaching disaster. To put the final dagger into the mix, scientists have been called alarmists by media control groups as if they are paranoid psychotics. The delusional unable to think for themselves have picked up the term and now spew it as if there was some truth in the characterization. Thank you big oil for that nice addition to our overall intelligence level. It’s this kind of stuff that make us dumb and blind, just as the instigators intended.
I actually feel sorry for the scientific community, for they must suffer horrible angst when watching all the mindless chatter that delays, misguides, or fully distorts what needs to be done in multiple arenas of civilization. How can we help the scientists? Don’t be a simpleton that parrots, personally grow your intelligence by recognizing how little you truly know. There is a term for that too. It’s called a personal inner reflection that opposes the outer reflection of ego driven thought that thinks you are intelligent because you can accurately parrot a prominent personality.
Do you know where else this leads us? It leads to a source of information that pulls information from the heart. Our greatest minds in many fields have always been heart driven. Just look at the list of the more intelligent humans – Jesus, Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Einstein to FDR – all were able to manifest the higher intelligence of caring as a main trait within their personal thinking. I’ll go a step further, if one’s brainpower and the philosophies expressed, do not contain a genuine caring for humans and all of life as the main goal, then the thoughts are not entirely intelligent. One suffers from very low consciousness that they interpret as intelligent … and we have arrived back to the Dunning-Kruger effect of self-delusion.
I quote the greatest intellect that has ever lived. One of Albert Einstein’s most profound statements regarding reality:
“A human being is part of a whole, called by us the Universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings, as something separated from the rest–a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”
I believe Einstein was naturally wired to see through the “optical delusion” and enjoyed clear and precise thought. And if we cleansed our minds of all the self-delusion and garbage we contain, we too could approach his level of clear thought. We just have to work harder in this modern age, since the social fabric now includes massive communication devices that heightens the pollution of the self-deluded.
Teaching yourself has never been more important since wealth and power are controlling the device of advanced education through higher pricing. They are also the humans who have manipulated the scarcity of money to dummy down public schooling that made you dumb in the first place. It’s never too late to question everything you see and hear, from Facebook, Twitter, news media, politicians, advertisers, syndicated columnists and talk shows, because 95% was created by someone who thinks they are intelligent, but far removed from Einstein’s level of thought. More often than not, the information you hear is excessively delusional for it is the parroting of a highly manipulated public opinion. Though they may appear confident – no original, reflective, or clear thought has been applied. Profound thought with your heart and mind is your responsibility, and the world needs the most intelligent version of you walking the planet.
When looking through the eyes of agnotology, we have reached a point to only trust the uncorrupted scientists and mathematicians, for they know what the hell they are talking about. And for the most part, they do not lie through their language because they are the truth seekers, as we are the parrots of organizational brainwashing.
To end the circulation of confusion and deceit, the Neil Tysons of the world must start running for President and Congress. They are simply more intelligent than the rest of us and contain a lot less delusional knowledge. A scientific movement into government would also bring a halt to the money that supports stupidity. Money can defiantly transfer to the intelligent and exactly what America needs.
The majority of scientists have stayed in contact with their hearts and represent the best chance of restoring ours as a nation. Something we cannot wholeheartedly say about the lawyers. So we should ask ourselves two questions.
Do we really want lawyers in the White House running the country or highly intelligent scientists sculpting our environment? Do we want critical thinking or delusional knowledge contemplating on the Hill? An easy answer, ain’t it?