When it comes to Applied Science-based Skepticism, as well as paranormal and pseudoscientific theories, the term “critical thought” sparks a lot of debate. This is due to the importance of justification and sense in claims in determining truth. Instead of basing one’s thoughts and opinions on an already perceived inference, there is a need to explain and create new significance in what is claimed to be true, and thereby draw evidence-supported conclusions (Bensley, Lilienfeld, and Powell 12). My favorite subject also happens to be my favorite episode of Penn and Teller comics. The seventh episode was the most memorable experience I had (Mulnix 468). This is because of one the one hand, the fictitious background it thrives upon is skeptically intriguing, and on the contrary, the thrilling and enchanting impulses it sends across are almost palpable. Furthermore, the seventh episode of Penn and Teller challenged me to the belief that skepticism is pertinent to every personality, although to some degree that is variable. In essence, everybody tends to question why something happens and how the occurrence is far from the truth or whether it is real in entirety. Reflecting on the previous lessons in the past class, I since learned to perceive critical thinking as a redirected segment of thought aligned toward influence, attention and finding out new approaches of doing things. By subjecting ideas, arguments, and opinions to critical thinking, it is evident that human minds tends to move away from superstitious thoughts into proven projects that justify cause and effect, in manner that benefits not only humanity but also impacts the surrounding environment in a realistic and positive manner.
Of the many articles, a came by, the tale about How to Defend Society Against Science by one Paul Feyerabend was my favorite (Bensley, Lilienfeld, and Powell 14). This is because the skepticism of the author embraces both science and superstition from the beginning, however, as the arguments continue, he is more inclined to critical thinking and evidence-based conclusions than mere pseudoscientific beliefs. The assumption that everybody must take both science and ideologies seriously, as in every true argument, wicked lies are ingrained therein, and in every express and bold lie, truth is thereupon inscribed. Indeed, for one to assess the information and reach out to real aspects that can be subjected to the scrutiny of though without fail, then skepticism and the critical thing become indispensable ingredients. Perhaps this culminates to one of the most interesting discussions in class. The argument that skepticism and science are inseparable disciplines is very thrilling. On the one hand, science cherishes truth that is founded on evidence, an argument that is validated, justified, and enshrined on truth, such that an evaluation of critical thinking finds no flaws in such conclusions (Normand 54). On the contrary, anecdotal evidence founded on personal testimonies and justifications cannot be proven. The discussion in class ended with an objective conclusion that people who are skeptical are the real critical thinkers, and it is not that they do not have belief what is mundane and expressly agreeable, rather, their perceptions, understanding, and cognition thrives on evidence and truth.
In the course of the lesson, I learned one aspect that surprised me. The argument that human civilization on planet earth was contributed to by the aliens from other parts of the universe as is postulated by the ancient astronauts. This challenged me to change my thinking about the discipline of astrology when it projects a pseudoscientific assertion that the actual position of celestial bodies directly influences the behavior of human persons on the planet. I can, therefore, apply critical thinking in many fundamental aspects of my life. One of the crucial aspects is that I have learned to argue on constructive arguments founded on logical analysis and critical identification of evidence. Furthermore, I have learned to embrace logic, relate conclusions and premises as well as appreciating and recognizing both the informal and formal fallacies in daily life. Therefore, identifying strengths in arguments as well as outlining validity and relevance is essential (Mulnix 461). Because of the many things I learned in this class, I have since changed about how I live my life especially when it comes to communication and use of language, whereby ambiguity, connotation, and other abuses like incorrect definition are worth to handle appropriately, as well as employing good reasoning in different and diverse contexts of livelihood. In the guest to improve this class, I would, therefore, suggest that it is not only imperative for the learners to acquire literary immunity against propaganda but also vital to develop fairness for opposing stances while embracing critical thinking and rational evidence based thoughts.
Bensley, D. Alan, Scott O. Lilienfeld, and Lauren A. Powell. “A New Measure of Psychological Misconceptions: Relations with Academic Background, Critical Thinking, and Acceptance of Paranormal and Pseudoscientific Claims.” Learning and Individual Differences 36 (2014): 9–18. Web.
Mulnix, Jennifer Wilson. “Thinking Critically about Critical Thinking.” Educational Philosophy and Theory 44.5 (2012): 464–479. Web.
Normand, Matthew P. “Science, Skepticism, and Applied Behavior Analysis.” Behavior analysis in practice 1.2 (2008): 42–9. Web.