Honest Debate: how do you read? So do you read for understanding (as best you can)? Or do you read to find and pick out points to base a refutation on?
For me I tend to read for understanding if I feel that the other person is at least making an attempt to read my arguments for understanding. I think it is important to fully understand what the other person is saying because otherwise there is a tendancy to just lump them into a generic view, which doesn't always work with many of the posters on EvC. I think it is also important for the reason that Bluejay highlights later in this thread. That is that we might find ourselves arguing against something simply because that person is on the other side of the debate rather than taking the time to understand a person's position and then recognising that we have some common ground. But I will also read to refute otherwise there would be no point in replying if I was just interested in understanding the different stances held on this forum. There are not very many YEC posters as it is and so I find a sense of obligation to try to pick the most pertinent points in a post and try to show the other side of the argument.
Note also that what bluejay writes:
We, as evolutionists, are constantly fighting strawmen on this forum. It seems, in fact, that creationists are not even making any effort to understand at all.
can often be felt the other way round as well.
But yeah, for the next wee while as I get back to this forum I will probably mainly be skim reading and trying to catch up with what's been happening until I settle on which threads could do with some Arphy comments
For me I tend to read for understanding if I feel that the other person is at least making an attempt to read my arguments for understanding. I think it is important to fully understand what the other person is saying because otherwise there is a tendancy to just lump them into a generic view, ...
... and make assumptions of what they are saying instead.
That is that we might find ourselves arguing against something simply because that person is on the other side of the debate rather than taking the time to understand a person's position and then recognising that we have some common ground.
Yes, and I've seen people go on and on about an issue that is of their own making, misunderstanding the original point.
I feel it is necessary to establish the common ground first before you can debate the finer points, especially when this can involve interpretations of words in different manners.
... can often be felt the other way round as well.
Agreed, which is why I pointedly refrained from framing this as a evo vs creo issue.
This is another category of what I call dishonest posting:
Message 129 on the 0.99999~ = 1 ?thread: Look, the equivalence relation on decimal representations definitely puts every decimal representation in the same equivalence class as itself. 1 = 1. 4.9 = 4.9. The square root of two equals the square root of two.
This seems reasonable on the surface, but it is really misses the point and is out of context to the message it is replying to, displaying that the previous messages are not read. Instead a piece is picked out for reply and misses the point.
Reading for understanding would mean following the thread backwards to see what was meant by the previous poster.
Usually this results in many wasted posts striving for clarification as person b tries to tell person a what they meant instead of understanding what person a said in the first place.
If you're going to skim posts to pick out issues to reply to, then the honest thing to do is backtrack on the posts so that you can understand the fuller argument being presented.
ps -- just for context:
Message 128 Yes, I most certainly did, because it is not proven to be the same in the original, and we are just asked to take it on faith.
In this case that the 0.999~ in line(3) was not shown to be the same as the 0.999~ in line(4) of Message 4.
Re: on reading to refute - does this lead to confirmation bias?
Hi Taz, sorry for the delay.
But I'm not sure confirmation bias and cognitive dissonance can be avoided. One can never begin a research completely neutral on the subject. We all have past experience. And we all have our own common sense. Combined the two, we will always have a little bit of confirmation bias and cognitive dissonance.
Case in point. Yesterday, I was hit with the news that exposure to cell phone radiation could be beneficial instead of harmful. ...
And I saw one that said that drinking 6 cups of coffee can help prevent cancer, which I would like to believe, as I drink more than that.
My point is even researchers begin their research with a kind of confirmation bias. The best any of us could do to avoid allowing CB and CD to take control of our lives is be aware that these things exist and always double check ourselves when presented with new facts.
So I agree with you that this is a natural tendency, however this does not mean that we should not be on guard for it cropping up.