Describe the primary point of view that you use to guide your thinking. What are the strengths and weaknesses of your view? In addition, describe a time when you, someone you know, or someone from a story you have seen experienced activated ignorance. What was the event, and how did that person display activated ignorance? Your explanations should have reasons that support them and that make use of the concepts in the textbook.
The primary point of view that I use to guide my thinking is that of rationalism. Rationalism, as defined by the textbook, is the philosophical position that reason is the primary source of knowledge and truth. This means that I rely on logical reasoning and evidence-based arguments to form my beliefs and make decisions. Rationalism emphasizes the importance of critical thinking and the use of objective criteria to evaluate claims and evidence.
One of the strengths of the rationalist point of view is its commitment to logical coherence and consistency. By grounding knowledge in reason, rationalism provides a solid foundation for intellectual inquiry and debate. It encourages skepticism and a rigorous examination of evidence, ensuring that beliefs are based on sound reasoning rather than on subjective feelings or biases. Rationalism also fosters intellectual independence, as it encourages individuals to think for themselves rather than relying on authority or tradition.
Another strength of rationalism is its ability to provide explanations and insights beyond what is immediately observable. By relying on reason, rationalism allows us to engage with abstract concepts and potential implications, leading to deeper understanding and innovative ideas. This approach has been instrumental in the development of scientific knowledge and advancements in various fields of inquiry.
However, rationalism is not without its weaknesses. One notable weakness is its limited capacity to deal with subjective experiences and emotions. While rationalism prioritizes reason, it fails to fully account for the complexities of human emotions and the subjective nature of certain experiences. This can hinder a comprehensive understanding of human behavior and decision-making processes, which often involve elements beyond rational calculation.
Furthermore, the rationalist approach may also overlook the importance of intuition and instinct, which can sometimes provide valuable insights that cannot be easily explained or justified by reason alone. This limitation suggests that rationalism may not be the sole or ultimate source of knowledge and truth, but rather one of many tools in our cognitive toolbox.
To illustrate the concept of activated ignorance, I would like to share a story about my friend who recently engaged in an online argument about climate change. Despite overwhelming scientific evidence supporting the existence and impact of climate change, my friend exhibited activated ignorance by denying its validity and disregarding the expert consensus.
The event occurred when my friend came across a news article that questioned the scientific consensus on climate change. Although my friend lacked expertise in climatology, they were immediately drawn to the provocative headline, which appealed to their preexisting skepticism towards the subject.
In the subsequent online discussion, my friend selectively cherry-picked and misinterpreted scientific studies to support their argument that climate change was a hoax. They dismissed the credibility of the scientific community, accusing them of biased agendas and dismissing the overwhelming consensus among scientists.
In this case, my friend displayed activated ignorance by actively seeking out and embracing information that aligned with their preexisting beliefs, while ignoring or dismissing the robust evidence to the contrary. They exhibited confirmation bias by selectively accepting information that confirmed their worldview and rejecting any contradictory evidence.
Furthermore, my friend demonstrated a lack of scientific literacy, as they failed to critically evaluate the credibility and methodology of the sources they relied upon. They relied on outdated or discredited studies, disregarding the wealth of peer-reviewed research that supports the existence and impact of climate change.
This story exemplifies activated ignorance because my friend actively chose to ignore and dismiss the overwhelming scientific consensus on climate change, opting instead to embrace information that reinforced their preexisting beliefs. This behavior is a clear example of how individuals can actively engage in ignorance by selectively seeking and accepting information that aligns with their beliefs while rejecting or dismissing contradictory evidence.
In conclusion, the rationalist point of view guides my thinking, relying on reason and evidence-based arguments. One strength of rationalism is its commitment to logical coherence and critical thinking. However, it may overlook subjective experiences and intuition. The concept of activated ignorance can be observed when individuals actively seek and embrace information that aligns with their preexisting beliefs and reject or dismiss contradictory evidence. My friend’s denial of climate change is an example of activated ignorance, as they selectively embraced information that confirmed their skepticism while disregarding the overwhelming scientific consensus.