trusting your own mind.

The following is a paraphrastic version of a conversation that I have had several times with various types of religious people.

A: It’s so obvious that god exists.

B: I disagree. I’m an atheist and I don’t believe in a god.

A: You don’t believe in a god? Why?

B: I don’t see any logical or philosophical reason to believe in the existence of a god. There’s no evidence, and I don’t operate on faith, only by the proper use of reason.

A: What? No faith? So you think you are the smartest person who ever lived? Your problem is that you trust your mind too much. How can you trust your intellect so implicitly as to come to such a narrow conclusion?

B: Okay, I’ll tell you what. You explain to me your reasoning for belief in the existence of god and when you are all finished, I will ask you one simple question.

A: Which question is that?

B: “How can you trust your intellect so implicitly as to come to such a narrow conclusion?”

A: Oh, you!

Fact is, everyone trusts their own mind. They have no choice. It is impossible to make reference to any conclusion one reaches without assuming it or making reference to it. The “technology” discovered to test the conclusions of the mind is logic, which according to Ayn Rand is “the art of non-contradictory identification.” Once logic shows the conclusion of the mind to be in full accordance with reality, it not only can be trusted, but if the human species is to perpetuate, it must be trusted.

 

2 thoughts on “trusting your own mind.

    • Hey, Jim. Nice piece. It reminds me of a paper I wrote once for a Philosophy of Science class in which I discussed the pseudo-science of NDE (“Near-Death Experience”) research. I argued that the most parsimonious explanation for the similarity of NDEs across human experience is not that everyone is experiencing the same “afterlife,” but rather that all humans share a common neurological structure. In other words, NDEs are merely the experience of what happens when the human brain begins to shut down. Incidentally, “out-of-body experiences” can be accounted for similarly – and even reproduced. Ketamine and the Parietal lobe are apparently a “transcendent” combination.

      Liked by 1 person

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