Tuesday, 7 October 2008

why psychology is so important

The mind has evolved to solve certain problems that kept cropping up in evolutionary history. Part of that is a general intelligence to work stuff out (be flexible) that history hasn't prepared it for. However, there are lots of other things that are more specific and muddy general intelligence.

When I say psychology is not the same as philosophy now but vital to it, what I mean is that without an understanding of the mind, we cannot get a good understanding of reality. We have to know the mud to remove it.

All knowledge gathering without an awareness of the mind's natural biases is the straight line in the diagram below. Knowing how the mind works allows you to travel along the bendy line, circumventing the mud, and obtaining unfettered knowledge. Close eyes, deep hum....

3 comments:

Roberto @ Psychbits.com said...

I agree with you. We must first calibrate our instruments of measurement (our brain) in order to be able to objectively measure reality. I find in it very interesting how people believe that intuition is a good measurement of reality.

Will said...

Re your last sentence: I know. It's why the phrase 'common sense' grinds my gears.

If you haven't already take a look at The Black Swan by Taleb. He spends time calibrating (I like the way you have framed it like that) from neat cognitive stuff (mostly from Kahneman and his ilk)to come up with his objective Black Swan Theory. Philosophy should be done like this.

Roberto said...

Thanks for the suggestion. I will take a look and get back to you.

My grandmother always said, "Common Sense is the least common of the senses". LOL