Runar Ovesen Hjerpbakk

Software Philosopher

Perhaps More Than Ever – Truth Matters →

Steven Novella is a personal hero of mine. Not only is he the primary host of my favorite podcast, The Skeptics’ Guide to the Universe, he’s also an excellent communicator of science, skepticism and neuroscience.

The latest post on his blog really hit home, encouraging us to step out of our bubble, dig deeper and indeed challenge ourselves to understand each other better.

Humans are tribal by nature. We now know from years of psychological study that we tend to plant our flag with one group, one ideology, one narrative – and then defend it at all costs. The more we identify with a position, or see it as a marker of our group, and the more we do, the greater our motivated reasoning. For things we don’t care about, or do not identify with, we tend to revert to a fairly rational approach – listening to new evidence and incorporating into our view. So we have the capacity to be rational, when our identity does not get in the way.