Be careful what you believe. Be careful what you wish for. Dramatic narratives are appealing, but emotional engagement is no assurance of truth. It’s just the easiest way to manipulate people. Distrust all cheering crowds, and distrust even more the men and women for whom they shout.
June 12, 2022
A Pause For Reflection
[I am tempted to extrapolate that to say, “Truth does not need emotion to validate itself. Emotional engagement is an indicator you must examine the evidence and logic closely looking for deception and/or error.” But that’s not as succinct.
The problem is that long before we developed logic and formal processes to distinguish truth from falsity we had emotional shortcuts that served us and our ancestors reasonably well as far back as there were pea sized brains. Logic and rational thought is an extremely thin veneer on top of that emotional lizard brain core. People, others or ourselves, can either deliberately or unintentionally bypass than thin veneer and engage that emotional core with minor effort to great effect. It is a wonderful system for generating extremely fast decisions with minimal effort. This works well for probably 99+% of the decisions we make each day. But this emotional core can also override reality. It takes a lot of evidence and effort to correctly conclude the earth is not flat and is not the center of the universe if you have have spent 20 years believing it was flat, motionless, and were certain the sun and stars move in the heavens.
Reality is really, really tough. Don’t let emotion, especially that created by a charismatic leader, degrade your ability to discern truth from falsity.—Joe]