It’s high time we put the most enduring myths about human behavior to bed, and see the mind—and the world—as it is.
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Many of ideas are conflated in this article which is an issue. I wont address all of it. Instead: "Beliefs are powerful modulators of motivation and purposive behavior... Depending on their content and context, they have the power to inspire or demoralize. They can also be dangerous: .... Beliefs have the power to make people fly airplanes into buildings. History is replete with examples of powerful leaders taking their nations into war based on magical ‘signs’ or omens."
Beliefs are indeed powerful. No one however is exempt from beliefs. As the first commentator "anonymous" pointed out, science is influenced by its own cultural paradigms and contexts. The article by Dr. Lewis is replete with the "beliefs" of its author who comes from his own unique set of conditioning.
As far as history being replete with leaders who take their nations into war based on magical signs and omens, the Soviets made attempts to remove religion from within Soviet borders. Their policies were not religious, but unofficially atheistic. They sought out and destroyed folk culture that came from tradition and superstitious belief. They imprisoned and tortured people of religious communities. Soviet policies resulted in the deaths of millions. Their atheistic views gutted various nations they had violently annexed and destroyed the fabric of families. As another example, communist Poland, persecuted Gorotowski, a stunning and talented theatre director, accusing his work of being "too spiritual".
The issue isnt belief vs critical thinking. All of it, as far as I am concerned, is belief- a thought in your head. The key is to see beyond the separateness that all thinking leads to. Religion and science can be powerful pointers to the non separateness that we are, or imprison us in schemas. As the first commentator noted, it is up to us to see these pointers and appreciate a far more nuanced and paradoxical world.
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