The Idea Emporium explores the Rottweiler Pope, Outraged Muslims and Breaking through Narcissism.

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AN INNER VOICE,
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Paranormal Proof
Warnings of Danger
Sept 2009

Feed the Bears?!
bears starving
Sept 2009


What's Narcissism?
and what's wrong with it?
Sept 2009


Fatal Flaw in
Economics of Growth

Aug 2009
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Hard Lessons About
Islamic History

August 2009


Deceptive Advertising
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July 2009

Conservative America
bad thinking
June 2009

The Ultimate Reality
are all religions equal?
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The Brain Game
Manifesto

good thinking,
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Mar 2009

Collective Guilt &
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past horrors,
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Lots of Thinking!
A Celebration
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Mar 2009

Western Tolerance,
Islamic Intolerance
Muslim outrage, Western
blindness - seen through
my curious eyes
Jan 2008   INTRO

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Imagination -
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not just make believe
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Open Secret on
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Bush, McCain, Palin -
Armed & Dangerous

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Paranormal
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Autism, Vaccines -
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How To Think -
Tip Number One:
Ask This One Question

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They Cripple and Bind

inner walls,
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frustrating for outsiders
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Don't Keep it Simple -
Keep it Alive

mental challenge -
the thrill of a lifetime
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Animals and Ethics
a childhood NO to a god
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Whose Dog Is It?
pets, ownership, slavery
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The Rottweiler Pope,
The Danish Cartoon
and Muslim Moderates

the pope's remarks -
help or hindrance?
Sept 2006  MORE  ALL

Mirror, Mirror,
Who is that Horror?

on the rage of the
righteous when coming
across mirrors
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A Dangerous
Temptation -

Counter-Prejudice

the lure of hating back
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Bush the "Righteous"
illusions, delusions, lies
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The Pope Speaks
outraged Muslims protest,
kill nun, demand apology

Sept 2006  MORE   ALL

Give Peace a Chance
by giving empathy
a chance
An Open Letter to
All People, and
for now, especially
all Muslims -
Feb/Aug 2006   MORE

The Rage
of the"Righteous"

on Muslim outrage
at a Danish cartoon
Feb/July 2006   MORE

This Is Not Me
but it's a tempting
disguise due to the
"righteous"
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Stupid
Opinions


stupid opinion #1
all opinions are equal
Aug 06  MORE  ALL
  

logical fallacy
opinion #2

you are where
you are supposed to be
Aug 06   MORE   ALL

Collective Sense of Guilt
Crazy Not Thinking

past horrors,
current baggage
Feb 09  ALL

Breaking the Spell
of Irrational Opinions

rule #1 - don't start by
calling it a stupid opinion
Aug 06  MORE   ALL

stupid opinion #3
everything happens
for a reason

stupid opinion #4
everyone always did
the best they could

stupid opinion #5
we shouldn't
be judgmental

stupid opinion #6
all religions are
basically the same

stupid opinion #7
all cultures are equal

 

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The Idea Emporium
ideas drawing on facts, thinking, logic, knowledge, experience, analysis; questions and thoughts on perceiving others, narcissism,
terrorism, rage, prejudice, fundamentalism, how change can happen, self-expression, self knowledge, limitations, fear, fear as weapon,
human possibilities and limitations; evaluation of some stupid opinions; causes of some current stupid opinions; plus, plus, plus ...

Elsa looking with ideas cooking

"It is a fact readily acknowledged,
that for humans, an idea is much more
powerful than a fact."

I don't know who wrote that, but I will take that as my springboard for some ideas of mine. One idea is that, just as ideas can close our minds (the idea that one race is better than another, for example), ideas can expand them.

. Idea Idea Idea Idea .
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The Rottweiler Pope,
the Danish Cartoon
and Muslim Moderates

Yesterday I listened to an interview with Clinton (former American president, in case anyone has forgotten). His view on the pope's remarks and the Danish cartoon: they make it more difficult for Muslims moderates.

But according to a Danish report, the discussions sparked by the cartoon moved the local Muslim community forward by at least three centuries - because before that, the Muslim views were not challenged and until that happened, they could not be changed.

So have the Danish cartoon and the pope's remarks hurt or helped Muslim moderates?

First, the cartoon and the remarks are not one and the same.      MORE

   
We're born with the capacity to rage.
What we learn to do with it,
is what matters.


Do we learn it is our right to rage? - others deserve whatever we're shelling out? Do we learn how to diminish the rage? Do we learn empathy - to feel the reality of others - so it become far harder to hurt?
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Clinton: The pope has hurt Muslim moderates.
Elsa: He's helping break the shell of Muslim self-righteousness.
The Idea Emporium - facts, ideas, analysis, conclusions.
Plus stupid opinions exposed.

For a "favorite" stupid opinion,
click here for Stupid Opinion #One
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The Idea Emporium - why and what

One of my lifelong concerns has been trying to make sense of reality. What is happening? Why is this happening? And with that I come to ideas - ideas about reality, ideas that need to be checked against reality, not just believed in like the tooth fairy is accepted by a child. But how does one check them? What qualifies as proof, as evidence?

And why, so often, is evidence of no interest to people? We have masses of evidence of how good many people are at denying evidence when it goes against what they believe. Millions have denied, and continue to deny the equality of women and men, of Jews and nonJews, of atheists and Muslims, gays and heterosexuals. People are incredible experts at denying reality - what is seen, experienced. Of course we need to interpret reality - we do not know it "pure" but through our limited senses, our limited memory, our limited ability to perceive and make sense of the amazing array of information that does gets perceived.

Still, it boggles the even slightly rational mind - how can so many people be so utterly blind to, let's say, findings about nutrition? It amazed me to find out, when I was growing up, that there was evidence for the health benefits of whole grains over refined products - because masses of people stuck with white flour, white rice, white sugar. How could they be so closed to evidence? Somehow they had a wall against the evidence.

The ideas I want to explore are those that go with, not against, the evidence, that try to make sense of evidence.

So, the Idea Emporium - a place for ideas.
The Idea Emporium - a place where ideas are explored.
The Idea Emporium - a place where ideas are entertained , played with,
looked at from many angles.
The Idea Emporium, a place where ideas are evaluated.

What is an idea, by the way. I hadn't thought of that when I chose the name of The Idea Emporium. It just seemed the obviously right name. It was months before I realized I had a hard time putting into words what I meant by idea. I began to think about the word. Sentences with the word, idea, floated into my mind. Like, "I have an idea. Why don't we order pizza?" That was an eye-opener for me.

My guess is that most of us use the word without knowing exactly what it means. "I have an idea of what we might do. Maybe we could go out for Chinese food. But It's just an idea" - meaning this need not come to pass, but we think it might be fun. That is obviously not what I meant by idea.

"I have an idea. Maybe you left your hat in the car." Again, no

""My idea is that we go in together and talk to her." No.

These are all legitimate uses of the term, idea, but it's not what I meant when I came to name The Idea Emporium. And I'm sure it's not what people might expect if they click on The Idea Emporium - because it's not what most people mean by the word "idea."

Word has a built-in dictionary. This is what it says:

Idea -
a personal opinion or belief;
a thought to be presented as a suggestion;
an impression or knowledge of something;
a realization of a possible way of doing something or of something to be done;
the aim or purpose of a plan or project;
the gist or précis of something such as a book, report, project or plan;
a thought about or mental picture of something such as a future or possible event;
a concept that exists in the mind only;
a mental image that reflects reality.

The last is what I'm most interested in - ideas that reflect reality as well as possible. But I've decided that I like it that idea is such a wide term.

Here I am taking idea to mean (and I think this is what most of us think of when we think of the meaning of the word, idea) some thought one has about something. "I have an idea" - meaning, I am not sure this concept fits reality, but it is a hypothesis I have formed.

I also think that, when I named The Idea Emporium, I was blurring words together in my mind - idea, concept, conception, understanding, hypothesis.

The Idea Emporium - a place for all these things.

This is not the same as people having "an idee fixe" - meaning, a fixed idea, a rigid belief that something is one way or another.
The sooner people get rid of such ideas, the better. The Idea Emporium is not a place to set out rock-hard beliefs and stone people with them, hurling them like missiles at all and any that come within striking range.

That is not The Idea Emporium.

The Idea Emporium - a place to present and explore ideas - for now my ideas.

That does not mean the idea need to be timidly set forth, all hemming and hawing, tentative even when the evidence is strong.

The Idea Emporium – the goal is smart opinions, critical thought, perception, good analysis.

The Idea Emporium. Smart opinions - meaning, drawing on every resource possible, rather than "it's my opinion, that's why I believe it, and it's as good as yours any day. Who are you to say blacks can do math, women can learn to read, Jews deserve to live. I have every right to my opinion." Personally, I'd rather do my best to think well, but many others are clearly proud of their avowed right to be thoughtless.

That's not The Idea Emporium.

The Idea Emporium. Critical thought - that means we do our best to think well, to apply logic, information, all our capacities.

The Idea Emporium. Good analysis. Again, that means we try to ensure that we use valid arguments - not, "because it's my opinion," "because I say so" "because I know that's right" "because my god says so" "because everyone knows that's right" . We both draw conclusions from evidence (so there may be evidence showing patterns and tendencies in certain groups (for instance, I've done lots of research on the impact of rights movements on those who get involved, and have found lots of evidence for patterns of response) - and at the same time we are careful not to generalize, to draw conclusions beyond what we have evidence for, and even contradicting the evidence ("Women are ..." "Muslims believe ..." "everyone this happens to ..." "Jews are..." "Gays are ..."

The Idea Emporium. Perception. Not easy to perceive. We each do it through a filter of experience, memory, assumptions, and so on. We have all learned not to perceive many things - denial - and to magnify other things. The goal at The Idea Emporium (and this should be the goal everywhere) is to be as perceptive - taking in as much information - as possible.

The Idea Emporium. i could go on and on. But this is enough for a start. More important now to put it into action - because it's ideas came first, surging inside me, wanting to find a place to be heard.

I'm (among other things) a college teacher, so my teaching gives me one outlet for my ideas, to express them, modify them, listen to other ideas, test the evidence, the power (or lack thereof) of different arguments.

But that hasn't been enough for me. One small class at a time.

I have a sense that I have some ideas that could be valuable to many people - ideas many people don't have (many have very different ideas), ideas where my ideas may help other people struggling with some of the same concerns, and so on. I think these ideas could help make some kind of positive difference in the world, reach people who are reachable, maybe even break through some shells many people live inside, shells that stop them from perceiving things.

There will be space for the ideas of others as well. Right now I am starting with a few ideas of mine. But I envisage that The Idea Emporium is a place that will grow, enriching both others and also myself - that I and my ideas will grow from some of what comes back.

Elsa
July 30, 2006


copyright © Elsa Schieder 2006, 2011
publishing house - FlufferDuff Impressions 2006, 2011

Questions - on rage, hatred, narcissism, empathy, caring, peace.
Good thinking and analysis. Logic plus emotion.
The Idea Emporium - facts, ideas, conclusions.
Plus stupid opinions exposed.


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THE IDEA EMPORIUM
A CELEBRATION OF GOOD THINKING

THE IDEA EMPORIUM
NO HOLDS BARRED THINKING

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LOOK AT ANYTHING, ASK ANYTHING

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"It is a fact readily acknowledged,
that for humans,
an idea is much more powerful
than a fact."

 

WHEN I HEARD THAT,
I HAD A EUREKA MOMENT.
YES, I HAD SEEN THAT SO OFTEN.

 

SOME OF US ALREADY LOVE GOOD THINKING.

BUT GOOD THINKING IS POSSIBLE
FOR ALMOST ALL OF US,
JUST LIKE EVEN A COUCH POTATO
CAN GET INTO SHAPE!

SO, FOR THE THINKERS
AND THE POTENTIAL THINKERS


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