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Author Topic:   Cognitive Dissonance and Cultural Beliefs
Straggler
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 10198
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


Message 76 of 102 (672720)
09-10-2012 7:48 PM
Reply to: Message 75 by RAZD
09-10-2012 7:44 PM


Re: The "fuckwitted" and "wanker" groups
RAZD writes:

Why did you change your behavior?

Because my initial instinct (i.e. give the money back) was an unthinking response. After thinking about it, and being inspired by the comments of others bashing bankers, I decided that it would do less good in the hands of a bonus-ridden-banker than pretty much anyone else I could think of.

Where is the contradiction in my thinking that has caused CD?

Edited by Straggler, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 75 by RAZD, posted 09-10-2012 7:44 PM RAZD has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 77 by RAZD, posted 09-10-2012 7:54 PM Straggler has not yet responded
 Message 80 by Dr Adequate, posted 09-10-2012 11:11 PM Straggler has responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 19520
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 2.5


Message 77 of 102 (672721)
09-10-2012 7:54 PM
Reply to: Message 76 by Straggler
09-10-2012 7:48 PM


Re: The "fuckwitted" and "wanker" groups
Hi Straggler,

Because my initial instinct (i.e. give the money back) was an unthinking response. ...
Where is the contradiction in my thinking that has caused CD?

Your "initial instinct" was an "unthinking response" response because it was from your worldview: it is part of your worldview that it is proper to return property to the owner, and it is more of an unconscious response than an unthinking one (it has been previously thought out ... or taught to you by parents etc ... it is part of your cultural makeup).

You could almost say it is a programed response.

Enjoy.

Edited by RAZD, : last line added


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
Rebel American Zen Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 76 by Straggler, posted 09-10-2012 7:48 PM Straggler has not yet responded

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 1543 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 78 of 102 (672724)
09-10-2012 8:15 PM
Reply to: Message 70 by RAZD
09-10-2012 7:03 PM


Re: Cognitive Dissonance and Protective Insulation for Your Worldview
RAZD writes:

Of course -- do you think CD is not reciprocal? that only one side experiences it? that one side is necessarily correct? what about muslims\jews\christians arguing over Jerusalem?


It is definitely possible that only one side feels CD.
How much CD do you feel when a YEC claims that the Earth is ~6000 years old?

RAZD writes:

Panda writes:

The only person that would (e.g.) show that the earth is 4.5 million years old is a palaeontologist.

So the Age Correlations and An Old Earth, Version 2 No 1 thread is all for naught?

Did you post that to mitigate your own CD?
If not then my point stands.

Your first example of how someone would change the new dissonant information coming in ("show that it actually is erroneous") is not correct.

RAZD writes:

I'd likely put them under stupid or deluded ... but I open to considering other categories that can be defined as groups.


You missed my point.
I suspect on purpose - but I guess it could be CD.

RAZD writes:

lol - and that is a group as well.


And again.

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 70 by RAZD, posted 09-10-2012 7:03 PM RAZD has acknowledged this reply

  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 16025
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 3.1


(1)
Message 79 of 102 (672734)
09-10-2012 10:44 PM
Reply to: Message 72 by Straggler
09-10-2012 7:15 PM


Re: Bump.
The scenario you paint could be a sign of cognitive dissonance.

And I would argue that it probably is. If you suddenly acquire a belief that most people don't have and that you've never held before just at the point when it becomes convenient for you to believe it, then although "post hoc ergo propter hoc" is a formal fallacy, it is also a good rule of thumb in cases like these.

Thus I put it to you that most of those who believe being gay is a choice do so not because they are seeking to resolve cognitive dissonance but because they haven't really thought about it, have no dissonance at all, and just accept the stance taken by the media, their family, their friends and the others that they listen to on such matters.

I think that that is so, yes. It resolves the cognitive dissonance of the homophobic community as a whole, but obviously they don't each have to think of it, they can just be brought up to believe it.

But no-one would have thought of it in the first place, or believed it after more than five seconds' thought, if it wasn't so extraordinarily convenient. I agree that maybe there are some people who don't give as much as five seconds' thought to any given proposition, and so are incapable of feeling cognitive dissonance, let alone resolving it, and has just taken it on the nod like they believe in talking snakes, but the idea exists to resolve cognitive dissonance, otherwise it would have no greater currency than: "Maybe the reason I keep losing my socks is that leprechauns eat them". I've given my arguments for thinking this, so you can address them.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 72 by Straggler, posted 09-10-2012 7:15 PM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 81 by Straggler, posted 09-11-2012 8:10 AM Dr Adequate has not yet responded

  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 16025
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 3.1


(1)
Message 80 of 102 (672737)
09-10-2012 11:11 PM
Reply to: Message 76 by Straggler
09-10-2012 7:48 PM


Re: The "fuckwitted" and "wanker" groups
Because my initial instinct (i.e. give the money back) was an unthinking response. After thinking about it, and being inspired by the comments of others bashing bankers, I decided that it would do less good in the hands of a bonus-ridden-banker than pretty much anyone else I could think of.

Where is the contradiction in my thinking that has caused CD?

That would be the conflict between your "initial instinct" not to steal, and your other initial instinct to keep the money 'cos you want it. Now that you have modified your opinions so that it's OK to steal from the "bonus-ridden-bankers" whom you imagine to be your worthy victims, you can keep the money and you can keep your high opinion of your morality. You have not committed a misdeed, indeed in your own small way you are taking a just revenge against an egregious social wrong. Hurray!


This message is a reply to:
 Message 76 by Straggler, posted 09-10-2012 7:48 PM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 82 by Straggler, posted 09-11-2012 8:12 AM Dr Adequate has responded

  
Straggler
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 10198
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


(1)
Message 81 of 102 (672751)
09-11-2012 8:10 AM
Reply to: Message 79 by Dr Adequate
09-10-2012 10:44 PM


Re: Bump.
Dr A writes:

But no-one would have thought of it in the first place, or believed it after more than five seconds' thought, if it wasn't so extraordinarily convenient. I agree that maybe there are some people who don't give as much as five seconds' thought to any given proposition, and so are incapable of feeling cognitive dissonance, let alone resolving it, and has just taken it on the nod like they believe in talking snakes, but the idea exists to resolve cognitive dissonance...

I agree with your point that the origin of many fuckwitted beliefs, some of which you have detailed, can legitimately be attributed to cognitive dissonance. However I think the vast majority of those who have adopted many of these beliefs do so for reasons that have little at all to do with resolving internal contradictions or psychological discomfort. You can't discern that someone is suffering from CD simply because they happen to be partial to a particulalrly fuckwitted point of view.

If this thread is only about examples of beliefs that can legitimately to be said to have originated as a result of some sort of CD - Then you are doing a good job of exemplifying those.

If this thread is also about how we recognise whether individuals are suffering CD or how rife CD is (here at EvC or in the wider world) then we need to consider what CD actually is and how we recognise actual internal psychological conflict.

Simply pointing out that groups of people hold idiotic beliefs isn't a sign that they are all internally conflicted. In fact I would suggest most of them aren't particularly suffering from CD at all. they just hold idiotic beliefs.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 79 by Dr Adequate, posted 09-10-2012 10:44 PM Dr Adequate has not yet responded

  
Straggler
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 10198
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


Message 82 of 102 (672753)
09-11-2012 8:12 AM
Reply to: Message 80 by Dr Adequate
09-10-2012 11:11 PM


Re: The "fuckwitted" and "wanker" groups
Actually I gave the money to charity.

is that still an example of CD in your eyes?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 80 by Dr Adequate, posted 09-10-2012 11:11 PM Dr Adequate has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 83 by RAZD, posted 09-11-2012 9:08 AM Straggler has responded
 Message 85 by Dr Adequate, posted 09-11-2012 4:56 PM Straggler has responded

  
RAZD
Member
Posts: 19520
From: the other end of the sidewalk
Joined: 03-14-2004
Member Rating: 2.5


Message 83 of 102 (672760)
09-11-2012 9:08 AM
Reply to: Message 82 by Straggler
09-11-2012 8:12 AM


Re: The "fuckwitted" and "wanker" groups
Hi Straggler,

Actually I gave the money to charity.

You still modified your behavior, and in this case, you still felt you did not deserve the money (worldview beliefs again) and so gave it to someone else you felt could best use it.

is that still an example of CD in your eyes?

Yes, because of behavior modification (AND because you still were conflicted to keep or give to someone else? then resolved that to preserve your feeling that you are honest by not keeping it by giving it to what appears a worthy cause, well done)

Enjoy.

Edited by RAZD, : added


we are limited in our ability to understand
by our ability to understand
Rebel American Zen Deist
... to learn ... to think ... to live ... to laugh ...
to share.


Join the effort to solve medical problems, AIDS/HIV, Cancer and more with Team EvC! (click)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 82 by Straggler, posted 09-11-2012 8:12 AM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 84 by Straggler, posted 09-11-2012 1:54 PM RAZD has acknowledged this reply

  
Straggler
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 10198
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


Message 84 of 102 (672813)
09-11-2012 1:54 PM
Reply to: Message 83 by RAZD
09-11-2012 9:08 AM


Re: The "fuckwitted" and "wanker" groups
So every single change of mind or change in behaviour constitutes an example of cognitive dissonance in your view?

I was going to eat a sandwich for lunch until a colleague reminded me that a new Korean place had opened across the road. I changed my mind (and behaviour) about lunch. Was that CD in action too?

I was going to unthinkingly return the money to the bank until I was persuaded by newspapers, TV and the debate sites I happen to frequent that this would add nothing to anything I care about and would simply be gobbled up in undeserving bonuses. So I changed my mind and gave the money to charity.

Why do you insist on seeing CD at every turn. People change their minds, change the behaviours for all sorts of reasons.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 83 by RAZD, posted 09-11-2012 9:08 AM RAZD has acknowledged this reply

  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 16025
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 3.1


(1)
Message 85 of 102 (672833)
09-11-2012 4:56 PM
Reply to: Message 82 by Straggler
09-11-2012 8:12 AM


Re: The "fuckwitted" and "wanker" groups
Actually I gave the money to charity.

is that still an example of CD in your eyes?

What difference does it make what you spend the money on? --- the question is whether you were conflicted about taking it and what you did to reduce the inner conflict.

Edited by Dr Adequate, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 82 by Straggler, posted 09-11-2012 8:12 AM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 86 by Straggler, posted 09-12-2012 6:05 AM Dr Adequate has responded

  
Straggler
Member (Idle past 214 days)
Posts: 10198
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


Message 86 of 102 (672876)
09-12-2012 6:05 AM
Reply to: Message 85 by Dr Adequate
09-11-2012 4:56 PM


Re: The "fuckwitted" and "wanker" groups
Dr A writes:

What difference does it make what you spend the money on?

It matters because that will decide whether there is any conflict or not.

Dr A writes:

..the question is whether you were conflicted about taking it..

Absolutely. That is exactly the question. That is my point. Without any conflict any diagnosis of CD is misplaced.

Dr A writes:

...and what you did to reduce the inner conflict...

I didn't do anything to reduce any inner conflict because there wasn't really any inner conflict in the situation as I have detailed it. As soon as I stopped and considered the situation it was glaringly obvious that the money should go to charity rather than evil bankers.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 85 by Dr Adequate, posted 09-11-2012 4:56 PM Dr Adequate has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 88 by Dr Adequate, posted 09-12-2012 7:36 AM Straggler has responded

  
bluegenes
Member (Idle past 307 days)
Posts: 3119
From: U.K.
Joined: 01-24-2007


Message 87 of 102 (672877)
09-12-2012 7:10 AM


Spots don't mean measles.
One of the mistakes that can be made in diagnosis of cognitive dissonance is looking at a list of symptoms, and then running with it. It's easy to make this type of error: Spots are a symptom of measles; I see spots: therefore, measles.

Here's a list of symptoms:

surprise, dread, guilt, anger, or embarrassment.

Of those, I think that guilt is the only one that would almost always indicate internal conflict. Embarrassment will often be caused by it, but I think there are plenty of exceptions. The other three seem to be on the spots and measles level.

But that's if we're taking CD to mean anything significant. If we put it on this level:

Joe believes "x" is unlikely to happen, then this causes conflict with his perception that "x" has just happened, therefore he experiences mild surprise, it could end up being reduced to a meaningless phrase. Joe, of course, according to CD theory, in accepting that "x" has happened, and rejecting his belief that it wouldn't, has shown the human drive for consistency.

So I think it's only useful to describe situations which cause a significant level of discomfort. Joe is hardly likely to be discomforted by the fact that his best friend Mike has just turned up at his door in Chicago when he thought that Mike was on vacation in Florida.

So with groups. Are most YECs really feeling discomfort because of their beliefs? Are they sensing a conflict with what they observe and know about the world? Do they feel guilty? Or are they more likely to think that the rest of us should be feeling guilty because we don't hold the true belief?


  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 16025
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 3.1


(1)
Message 88 of 102 (672879)
09-12-2012 7:36 AM
Reply to: Message 86 by Straggler
09-12-2012 6:05 AM


Re: The "fuckwitted" and "wanker" groups
It matters because that will decide whether there is any conflict or not.

No, that would be decided by whether there is any conflict or not.

Absolutely. That is exactly the question. That is my point. Without any conflict any diagnosis of CD is misplaced. [...] I didn't do anything to reduce any inner conflict because there wasn't really any inner conflict in the situation as I have detailed it.

And I gave an example in which there was, in fact, conflict, and therefore the diagnosis is quite properly placed.

Really, I don't see where you're going with this. I say that an elephant would be an example of a mammal. You reply excitedly: "Yes, but suppose it wasn't an elephant! Suppose it was a hat-stand! Then it wouldn't be an example of a mammal!" Well, quite. This is why I gave an elephant as an example of a mammal, rather than a hat-stand.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 86 by Straggler, posted 09-12-2012 6:05 AM Straggler has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 89 by Panda, posted 09-12-2012 7:45 AM Dr Adequate has responded
 Message 91 by Straggler, posted 09-12-2012 8:34 AM Dr Adequate has responded

  
Panda
Member (Idle past 1543 days)
Posts: 2688
From: UK
Joined: 10-04-2010


Message 89 of 102 (672880)
09-12-2012 7:45 AM
Reply to: Message 88 by Dr Adequate
09-12-2012 7:36 AM


Re: The "fuckwitted" and "wanker" groups
Dr. A. writes:

This is why I gave an elephant as an example of a mammal, rather than a hat-stand.


But Straggler's issue was with RAZD pointing at both elephants and hat-stands and calling them both mammals - or at least not being able to distinguish between them; simply assuming they are both mammals.

"There is no great invention, from fire to flying, which has not been hailed as an insult to some god." J. B. S. Haldane

This message is a reply to:
 Message 88 by Dr Adequate, posted 09-12-2012 7:36 AM Dr Adequate has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 90 by Dr Adequate, posted 09-12-2012 7:51 AM Panda has acknowledged this reply
 Message 92 by RAZD, posted 09-12-2012 10:06 AM Panda has responded

  
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 16025
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 3.1


Message 90 of 102 (672881)
09-12-2012 7:51 AM
Reply to: Message 89 by Panda
09-12-2012 7:45 AM


Re: The "fuckwitted" and "wanker" groups
But Straggler's issue was with RAZD pointing at both elephants and hat-stands and calling them both mammals.

Whereas I gave an example of a mammal and called it one.

I gave an example of someone whose thoughts were dissonant. Straggler replies that if he had different thoughts then they wouldn't be dissonant. This is true, but hardly worth saying.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 89 by Panda, posted 09-12-2012 7:45 AM Panda has acknowledged this reply

  
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