Friday, September 26, 2014

Solved on some level

When I'm working on some psychological problem, there's a sense of when it's "solved". I talk about "inner conflicts" a lot, but "completely devoid of inner conflicts" and even "completely devoid of inter conflicts with respect to this subject" is often too high a bar. The sense of "my work here is done" comes before that.

Friday, September 19, 2014

Understanding the need for control

There's a kind of person that hypnotists label as "analytical" who tend to be more difficult to hypnotize. "Analytical" people tend to see the alternative being a "ignore reason and listen to your feelings" kind of person. The thing is, this "analytical" thing is also a failure mode.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

When to bury your head in the sand

One of the things that used to irk me a lot (and still sometimes does) is when people metaphorically stick their head in the sand and avoid mere awareness of stuff that is important. I think it irks a lot of us "aspiring rationalists" - that ostriching thing is just about completely antithetical to the core tenets of rationality.
And yet, it feels so darn compelling to so many people. Every decision you disagree with, yours or others, is a Chesterton's fence. One of my huge heuristics lately is that you don't plow over Chesterton's fences when you don't understand their function well enough to pass the ideological turing test. Partly because it's hard to do, partly because it would actually be unwise to do. It really is important to empathize before giving advice.