Critical Thinking (Updated 2/1/2016)

It’s important not to just think more, but to go about it correctly. I have selected quotes from materials I have studied as a succinct reminder of how vulnerable (and stubborn) the human mind is, but also for me to reinforce my own learning and principles too.

Always a more beautiful answer that asks a more beautiful question.


A wise man proportions his belief to the evidence: What’s more likely when you hear a fantastic story about some miraculous event – that the laws of nature were temporarily suspended or that those who think something was miraculous are mistaken?

David Hume

The first principle is that you must not fool yourself – and you are the easiest person to fool.

Richard Feynman

The smarter people are, the better they are able to defend their own beliefs as true and the less open they are to the truth of other people’s beliefs. Smart people are better at rationalising their beliefs with reasoned arguments, but as a consequence, they are less open to considering other positions.

Michael Shermer, Great Courses – Skepticism

A fact is defined as a conclusion confirmed to such an extent that it would be reasonable to offer provisional assent.

Michael Shermer, Great Courses – Skepticism

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