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Therefore, reasoning about a decision in multiple moods, places and settings will give you the greatest variety of backdrops to reason about things.If the decision is the same each time, you’re can be more confident that you have the correct assessment.Although there’s a risk of group think and conformity pressures, if you take a large and diverse enough group, you’re more likely to be exposed to the best reasoning, which will tend to win out over the majority opinion.
The first problem was actually resolved over a hundred years ago by psychologists Edward Thorndike and Robert Woodworth.
The popular view of learning of their day was the idea that human brains contained large, distinct “faculties” such as logic, memory and judgement, and that by practicing them on subjects, regardless of their relevance to the real world, would strengthen these faculties just like lifting weights in the gym improves your muscles.
So if the classic view of critical thinking is wrong, what’s the right way of doing it?
I think there’s two broad approaches that will work to make better decisions: This first strategy is to recognize what you’re actually doing when you’re reasoning about things and uses this knowledge to try to avoid making common mistakes.
Old beliefs may cling stubbornly to their prior position, even once you’re shown to be wrong.
Part of this may be because, in an argumentative theory of reason, we are trying to justify our intuitive beliefs rather than argue against them.
Given what we know about how reason works, there’s a few things you can do: Since reason tends to be more to justify than to generate the right judgement, one way to avoid making mistakes is to reason about the same problem in a lot of different contexts.
The modular theory of mind says that rather than a single coordinated function, the brain consists of a lot of semi-autonomous modules that all “vote” their preferred action into the brain.
While there’s some benefit of this, most of the work of learning a language is learning specific vocabulary.
Thus, if you want to learn Japanese, you’re best off learning Japanese vocabulary—mastering Latin first won’t help too much.