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The Pattern Behind Self-Deception

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posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 08:33 AM
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Shermer Video On TED

Shermer's Blog About The Video

From the blog:


Souls, spirits, ghosts, gods, demons, angels, aliens, intelligent designers, government conspiracists, and all manner of invisible agents with power and intention are believed to haunt our world and control our lives. Why?

The answer has two parts, starting with the concept of patternicity, which I define as the human tendency to find meaningful patterns in meaningless noise. The face on Mars, the Virgin Mary on a grilled-cheese sandwich, Satanic messages in rock music. Of course, some patterns are real: finding predictive patterns in changing weather, fruiting trees, migrating prey animals and hungry predators was central to the survival of Paleolithic hominids.

The problem is that we did not evolve a baloney-detection device in our brains to discriminate between true and false patterns. So we make two types of errors: a Type I error, or false positive, is believing a pattern is real when it is not; a Type II error, or false negative, is not believing a pattern is real when it is. If you believe that the rustle in the grass is a dangerous predator when it is just the wind (a Type I error), you are more likely to survive than if you believe that the rustle in the grass is just the wind when it is a dangerous predator (a Type II error). Since the cost of making a Type I error is less than the cost of making a Type II error, and since there’s no time for careful deliberation between patternicities in the split-second world predator-prey interactions, natural selection would have favored those animals most likely to assume that all patterns are real.


And it does on to address one of the reasons this site exists:


...we practice what I call agenticity: the tendency to believe that the world is controlled by invisible intentional agents. That is, we often infuse the patterns we find with agency, and believe that these intentional agents control the world, sometimes invisibly from the top down (as opposed to bottom-up causal randomness). Together, patternicity and agenticity form the cognitive basis of shamanism, paganism, animism, polytheism, monotheism, and all modes of Old and New Age spiritualisms.

Agenticity carries us far beyond the spirit world. The Intelligent Designer is said to be an invisible agent who created life from the top down. Aliens are often portrayed as powerful beings coming down from on high to warn us of our impending self-destruction. Conspiracy theories predictably include hidden agents at work behind the scenes, puppet-masters pulling political and economic strings as we dance to the tune of the Bildebergers, the Rothchilds, the Rockefellers or the Illuminati.


While I don't doubt that conspiracies do exist, most of our theorizing about conspiracies, gods, aliens, etc. can be chalked up to these patterns of thought. I think Shermer nailed it here.

The video also has some really cool examples and demonstrations




posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 08:53 AM
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I am not quite convinced.

The reptilian part of the brain gave us some thought patterns: a) can I eat it? b) can it eat me? c) Can I have sex with it?. Outcomes are Fight, Flight, Submit, etc

The later development of the Limbic part of the brain added a degree of sensory awareness or sensory perception - for example the ability of a deer to sense around it.

Finally the frontal lobe development gave us a degree of self awareness.

So whilst I can see the logic of the false positive and false negative I do not believe it to be as binary as you set forth and whilst playing a role for sure, does not even begin to explain the wonders of the multiverse.

With all that said, having consumed Tea imbibed with secret ingredients that cannot be revealed here - the ghouls, in my experience do indeed exist.

Thks

Bravo

[edit on 18-6-2010 by Bravo111]



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 09:06 AM
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Originally posted by Bravo111
With all that said, having consumed Tea imbibed with secret ingredients that cannot be revealed here - the ghouls, in my experience do indeed exist.


Well, when you affect the brain with certain intoxicating stimulants you're willingly inducing the self-deception refer to in the post title.

While the brain is much more complex than a simple binary explanation there seems to be some truth to what Type I/II reasoning. And certainly nobody doubts that many people, especially on this site, contemplate the invisible forces which control things behind the scenes. This seems a reasonable explanation for such thought processes.

[edit on 18-6-2010 by traditionaldrummer]



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 09:17 AM
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reply to post by traditionaldrummer
 


Blah.

That text falls into the usual trap: just summing up everything that's even slightly "exotic" and "out there" into one bunch. These subjects, in fact, have nothing to do with each other. I also bothered to watch the first 20 secs of that video, and in that time he made an assumption that everyone who's interested on these subjects is believe (i.e.) that "the world is going to end in 2012". It's pretty obvious that he hasn't really looked into the whole theory and how it got started (Timewave Zero/Tzolkin).

IN FACT, these "phenomenons" might be aspects of the of the bigger picture. They might be the ultimate reality. That's why we're here. To understand these chaotic, hidden aspects of the universe. I've seen enough to say I don't really know anything.

Although I've enjoyed your post greatly, I think this was a bit useless.



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 09:21 AM
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Originally posted by Tryptych
Although I've enjoyed your post greatly, I think this was a bit useless.


Why is it useless? It addresses much of the thought processes employed by many people on this site.

Although, if you are a believer in some kind of oddity (2012 in your case apparently), I can see how this analysis may be irritating.



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 09:27 AM
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Don't you find it ironic that Mr. Shermer has fallen into the same type of self-deception, he describes in his theory?

The focus being shifted from conspiracies to models of thinking.




Well, when you affect the brain with certain intoxicating stimulants you're willingly inducing the self-deception refer to in the post title.


And the substances that Bravo is referencing are neither intoxicating or stimulating, they are psychotropic and actually open the doors of perception that Mr. Shermer wants to close and lock; They actually break down the patterns of thinking and barriers imposed by those that are uninitiated and/or intellectually constipated or so attached to their ideology that anything out of their frame of reference is frightening, thus needs to be discounted.







[edit on 18-6-2010 by whaaa]



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 09:34 AM
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Originally posted by traditionaldrummer

Although, if you are a believer in some kind of oddity (2012 in your case apparently), I can see how this analysis may be irritating.


No, I don't believe in the "2012 oddity"..

Have you really looked into the whole 2012-theory and do you even know what started it all? The Mayan calendar. The current b'ak'tun ends in 2012. Even the Mayan elders say it doesn't mean it's the end of the world. It's just the beginning of a new era. The thing is that they were the most advanced astronomers of their time and their system is still dropping jars with it's accuracy. Almost their whole belief system was based on time. That's why it's meaningful.

That guy should really look into these theories before judging them and making assumptions.



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 09:36 AM
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It is simply too simple - it is reductionist.

The thought process described by the posters informs, yes....it informs that one of the MANY means we as human beings use to determine a given situation can indeed be influenced by a false neg/ false pos process.

But to say this is somehow representative, and therefore we can now begin to understand why the human race believes there are "monsters under the bed" when there are not is minimalizing a broad and vast subject that has existed for eons.

Admittedly the thought process described by the poster will account for some situations, maybe quite a few.

Life whether physical or ethereal in all its glory and wonder, is too vast to be understood within the psychological territory of the human mind as it currently is.

Even when the minds capacity et al can be expanded by certain means to perceive the multiverse or aspects of it, it surely does not mean that one can then understand what is being perceived.


Recommend this book: Antipodes of the Mind by author Benny Shannon.

Thks

Bravo







[edit on 18-6-2010 by Bravo111]



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 09:40 AM
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I do, however, understand where Drummer is coming from..

If you read the ET board (for example), it's full of people who're willing to believe anything that they're told. I love the Sagan quote of keeping an open mind but not letting your brains fall out.



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 09:46 AM
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Originally posted by Bravo111

Recommend this book: Antipodes of the Mind by author Benny Shannon.


58$


Now I know what I want for Christmas.



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 09:47 AM
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My life has proven electronic mind control done remotely is being done by usa and uk.

So shermer can you know go where. The geezer is useless at anything analytical.



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 09:48 AM
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This is an examination of very basic optical preception. Harry Houdini stuff.

Why is it we hear of people running into big foot, ufos, ect when out in the woods but you never hear anyone say they came acrossed a fire hydrant in the middle of no where? I would like to set a fire hydrant out along a wilderness trail off to the side but in sight and see how many actualy make the connection of how out of place it is. Now that would be kicking this guys 101 Houdini crap up a few notches. Why? Because the hydrant itself is not an illiusion. Not an optical trick.

My point is that people that notice the hydrant would do so becouse of knowledge....they recognize its out of place because they know how hydrants operate and the dam thing shouldnt be there. The rest just pass on by.



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 10:16 AM
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Originally posted by whaaa

And the substances that Bravo is referencing are neither intoxicating or stimulating, they are psychotropic and actually open the doors of perception that Mr. Shermer wants to close and lock


"Opening the doors of perception" is fine, even with psychotropic substances (which are both intoxicating and stimulating, by the way). It's when you start to believe that the walls really were breathing (or whatever happened to you) during your experience that you begin to deceive yourself. What gives you the impression that Shermer wants to "close and lock" these doors?



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 10:17 AM
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Originally posted by andy1033
My life has proven electronic mind control done remotely is being done by usa and uk.


Uh huh.

Is there some way you can prove that claim to the rest of us?



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 10:22 AM
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Originally posted by traditionaldrummer

Originally posted by andy1033
My life has proven electronic mind control done remotely is being done by usa and uk.


Uh huh.

Is there some way you can prove that claim to the rest of us?


No of course not, other than everyone who knows me knows it is true, and i have lived with it since 1992, when i found it out at school. So in uk they are using this techs.

The people i went to school obviously knew, and the teachers, but they i do not know anymore.

But they absolutely tried to destroy my alevels time with it, for no reason. So imagine what they are doing today, if that was 1992.



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 10:22 AM
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Originally posted by Bravo111
Life whether physical or ethereal in all its glory and wonder, is too vast to be understood within the psychological territory of the human mind as it currently is.


The Type I/II thought process isn't there to explain life. It's there to address certain aspects of our perception. Amongst other things, the aspects that cause us to believe in ghosts, aliens, deities, etc.



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 10:24 AM
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Originally posted by andy1033
No of course not, other than everyone who knows me knows it is true, and i have lived with it since 1992, when i found it out at school. So in uk they are using this techs.


What "techs" are these?


The people i went to school obviously knew, and the teachers, but they i do not know anymore.


How did they "obviously know"?


But they absolutely tried to destroy my alevels time with it, for no reason. So imagine what they are doing today, if that was 1992.


What are "alevels"


[edit on 18-6-2010 by traditionaldrummer]



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 10:36 AM
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Why don't ghosts/deities/aliens exist? Can all beliefs in such things be chalked up to type I/II errors?



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 10:37 AM
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reply to post by traditionaldrummer
 


Not quite...let me clarify.

By life I mean all areas of life including Physical and Non-Physical - both of which (in my experience) are inherently intertwined and mutually dependent of each other.

The False pos and false neg approach attempts to shut down and dismiss that which is the non-physical element of life, and instead explain it away as the bogey monster and a figment of ones vivid imagination.

It is simply not that black and white. The gray area is the overlap between the physical and non-physical that needs to be bridged by science, amongst many other disciplines.

Thks

Bravo



posted on Jun, 18 2010 @ 10:39 AM
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Originally posted by traditionaldrummer

Originally posted by Bravo111
Life whether physical or ethereal in all its glory and wonder, is too vast to be understood within the psychological territory of the human mind as it currently is.


The Type I/II thought process isn't there to explain life. It's there to address certain aspects of our perception. Amongst other things, the aspects that cause us to believe in ghosts, aliens, deities, etc.


Cause us to believe? It has never been established that such things are simply a matter of perception.

All this guy has done is to demonstrate that perception can be subjective..but he has still done so within limits and has controled and restricted the examples ect and most of that simply optical.



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