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NEW! Political
Correctness and Fundamentalism

Jan 2008  MORE   A4L

#13 - Gambling -
Great? Gruesome?

May 2007  MORE   ALL

#12 - How To Think -
Tip Number One -
Ask This One Question

Apr 2007  MORE
  ALL

#11 -
Walls in the Mind,
They Cripple and Bind

inner walls, inner blocks -
invisible from within,
frustrating for outsiders
Jan 2007   MORE   ALL

#10 -
Don't Keep it Simple -
Keep it Alive

mental challenge is
the thrill of a lifetime -
or, the kiss of death
Dec 2006   MORE   ALL

#9 - Animal Rights -
from an Inner Voice

a childhood inner NO
to a god who prefers
the one who kills animals
Dec 2006  MORE   ALL

#8 -Whose Dog Is It?
pets, ownership, slavery
Dec 2006   MORE  ALL

#7 -
The Rottweiler Pope,
The Danish Cartoon
and Muslim Moderates

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

#6 - Mirror, Mirror,
Who is that Horror?

on the rage of the
righteous when coming
across mirrors
Sept 2006  MORE  ALL

#5 - A Dangerous
Temptation -

Counter-Prejudice

the lure of hating back
and hurting back
Sept 2006  MORE  ALL

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NEWSLETTER

#4 - Bush
the "Righteous"

his shell -
harder than stone -
illusions, delusions, lies
Sept 2006  MORE  ALL

#3 - The Pope Speaks
outraged Muslims protest,
kill nun, demand apology -
more rage of the
so-called righteous

Sept 2006  MORE   ALL

#2 - 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


#1 - The Rage
of the"Righteous"

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

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NEWSLETTER

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

Stupid
Opinions


#1
the opinion that
all opinions are equal
Aug 2006 MORE

#2
the opinion that you are
where you are meant to be
Aug 2006 MORE

Breaking the Spell
of Stupid Opinions

rule #1 - don't start by
calling it a stupid opinion

stupid opinion #3
that everything happens
for a reason
Aug 2006 MORE

stupid opinion #4
that everyone always did
the best they could -
an opinion voiced most
often about parents
who did lousy parenting

stupid opinion #5
that we shouldn't
be judgmental

stupid opinion #6
that all religions are
basically the same

stupid opinion #7
that all cultures are equal


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The Idea Emporium
why? what?
plus exploration of the
definition of "idea"

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em-po-ri-um
exploration of
the word
emporium
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innerwear that dares
innerwear for those
who dare -
The Idea Emporium
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Elsa, Brain Trainer
for a mental workout,
for good thinking tools,
to flex mental muscles
ABOUT ELSA
aka Dr Zee
Brain Trainer

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THE IDEA EMPORIUM
THE IDEA EMPORIUM
THE IDEA EMPORIUM



~ more ~
coming soon

The Rage-Hate Shell
Block-Out-All-Evidence-
Cut-Off-All-Empathy

so ordinary, so human,
so dangerous

SOON

School
Murder-Suicides

more rage-hate shells
SOON

Seeing Others
actually seeing them

Strengths and
Dangers of
Rights Movements
(race, gender,
sexual orientation,
religion, nation)

Ideas about
The Idea Emporium

as part of
the creativity emporium


If you bring forth
what is within you,
what is within you
will save you.
If you do not bring
forth what is within
you, what is within
you will destroy you.

from the gospel of
Thomas (part of the
gnostic gospels).
Thoughts on this ...


About Me
ideas and illusions
SOON



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critical thinking
The Idea Emporium
.

critical thinking

- STUPID OPINIONS -
spotting them,
blocking them,
stopping them,
and hardest of all,
breaking the hold of stupid opinions
on those caught within their spell
(and that sometimes includes us!).


- WEAPONS OF CHOICE -
magic bullets that sometimes break
the nasty spell
LOGIC,
EVIDENCE,
EMOTION,
INDIRECT ROUTES
(sneaky but sometimes most effective)

Like the evil fairy godmother
who casts her nasty spell over Sleeping Beauty
and traps her for one hundred years,
likewise many people in our society are caught
within the stupefiying spell of stupid opinions
that suffocate thought, shut down thinking.

Or rather, the evil spell shuts down thinking,
and then the stupid opinions take hold,
grow like mildew, like poisonous fungus
in a damp and musty basement.
Stupid opinions need this airless environment.
Fresh air, fresh thinking kills them on the spot -
but many people are at home among
the fungus of stupid opinions,
the dangerous mold of shut down minds.

We need, like Prince Charming
who rescues Sleeping Beauty,
to cut through the thick walls of mildewed thought
that surround those mentally asleep.

Open it up, says Dr Zee, open up every stupid opinion
to the fresh air of clear thinking,
and then abracadabra,
there will be an awakening
from the stupor of stupid opinions.

The newly awakened are liklely to ask themselves,
rubbing their eyes,
how could we ever have been caught
by opinions as stupid as that? - such as,

- we're all where we are meant to be,
- everything happens for a reason,
- all opinions are equal,
- they all did the best they could,
- we shouldn't be judgemental,
- all cultures are equal,
- all religions are equal,
- all religions are basically the same.

Wall in the mind
keep us deaf,
keep us blind,
keep us all confined.


Elsa,
a.k.a. Dr Zee,
clear thinking trainer

- BAD THINKING -
WORSE THAN THAN BAD MANNERS,
EVEN WORSE THAN BAD BREATH!

A MONSTER AMONG US,
MONSTROUSLY BAD THINKING.

DR ZEE TO THE RESCUE -
for GOOD THINKING,
from A to Z
EE

and for spotting BAD THINKING.

CLICK HERE FOR
TO START FROM A to ZEE,
to SEE WHAT THIS IS ALL ABOUT .

CLICK HERE FOR
STUPID OPINIONS
SPOTTED BY D
R ZEE.

CLICK HERE FOR
THE NON-SECRET
INGREDIENTS
OF GOOD THINKING -
THE PRESCRIPTION TO COUNTERACT
THE MONSTER AMONG US.

CLICK HERE FOR
GOOD THINKING
EXPLORATIONS.

CLICK HERE FOR
EVERYTHING
THAT'S AVAILABLE.


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

When she heard that, she had a
EUREKA moment.
Yes, she had seen that very often.


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And should you believe in a god or many gods,
here's a great quote:

"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God
who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect
has intended us to forgo their use."
- Galileo Galilei (1564 - 1642)


PLUS
COMING SOON

PODCASTS
WITH D
R ZEE
AND WITH
CALL-IN TIME
FOR QUESTIONS,
OPINIONS,
EXPLORATIONS,
EXCHANGE
REGISTER NOW

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HERE – THE IDEA EMPORIUM
A CELEBRATION OF GOOD THINKING

HERE – THE IDEA EMPORIUM
NO HOLDS BARRED THINKING

HERE – THE IDEA EMPORIUM
LOOK AT ANYTHING, ASK ANYTHING

LOOK ANYWHERE ...

AT OUR OWNERSHIP OF PETS,

AT OUR CELEBRATION OF TOLERANCE,

AT GAMBLING,

AT THE RAGE OF THE RIGHTEOUS,

 

PLUS, LOOK AT THE JOURNEY…


FROM BAD THINKING TO GOOD THINKING,

AND EVEN LOOK AT …

HOW TO THINK, TIP NUMBER ONE

AND ...
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PLUS
COMING SOON

PODCASTS
WITH D
R ZEE
AND WITH
CALL-IN TIME
FOR QUESTIONS,
OPINIONS,
EXPLORATIONS,
EXCHANGE
REGISTER NOW

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Click here for a blog on the writing of The Rage of the "Righteous" -
fear, censorship, self-censorship, and the unexpected.

For a "favorite" stupid opinion, click here for Stupid Opinion #One.

___________________________________________

comments, responses, further thinking, more ideas
__________________________________________

 


blue green idea

THE IDEA EMPORIUM
IDEA * EVALUATION * CONCLUSION * INSIGHT * COMMENTARY *
CONTROVERSY * INTELLECTUAL CONFLICTS *
CONFLICTING VERSIONS AND CONCLUSIONS * DIFFICULT AREAS *
THEORY * THEORIZING * FEMINIST THEORIES *
PSYCHOANALYTICAL THEORIES * ENVORINMENTAL CONCERNS * UNDERSTANDINGS * COMPLEXITIES * UNCERTAINTIES* GUESSES *
HUNCHES * GUT FEELINGS ABOUT THINGS *
EXPERIMENTS TO VERIFY IDEAS * VIEWPOINTS * OPINION *
THOUGHT-PROVOKING IDEAS * STIMULATING THEORIZING *
IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS * THE IDEA EMPORIUM *


blue green idea

The Idea Emporium. 
Stupid opinions exposed. Logical fallacies debunked.
Good thinking, logical analysis.
Exploration of evidence and facts.
Elsa's Idea Emporium. Fun. Recommended by Dr
Zee.

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
brain trainer

July 30, 2006

copyright © Elsa Schieder 2006, 2007 - all rights reserved
publishing house - FlufferDuff Impressions 2006

blue green idea

THE IDEA EMPORIUM
IDEA * EVALUATION * CONCLUSION * INSIGHT * COMMENTARY *
CONTROVERSY * INTELLECTUAL CONFLICTS *
CONFLICTING VERSIONS AND CONCLUSIONS * DIFFICULT AREAS *
OPINION * WELL-REASONED OPINION * UNFOUNDED OPINION *
STUPID OPINION * THEORY * THEORIZING * FEMINIST THEORIES *
PERCEPTION * PERCEPTIONS * PERSPECTIVES *
PSYCHOANALYTICAL THEORIES *
ENVORINMENTAL CONCERNS * ANALYSIS *
DISCOVERING UNDERLYING CAUSES *
AMBIVALENCES * AMBIGUITIES *
FEAR OF AND RAGE AGAINST IDEAS * FEAR OF EXPRESSING IDEAS *
ANTI-THINKING TORRORISM * ANTI-INTELLECTUAL TERRORISM *
FALLACIES * FLAWED REASONING *
THE RAGE AGAINST UNWANTED IDEAS *
THE RAGE AGAINST UNWANTED VISONS OF REALITY *
BLINKERS AGAINST PERCEPTION * BARRIERS TO THINKING *
BARRIERS TO REASONING *
INTELLECTUAL STIMULATION * STIMULATING IDEAS * FERTILE THOUGHT * VIEWPOINTS * UNDERSTANDINGS * COMPLEXITIES *
UNCERTAINTIES * GUESSES * HUNCHES *
FACTS * GUT FEELINGS ABOUT THINGS * EXPLORING IDEAS *
EXPLORATIONS OF IDEAS *
EXPERIMENTS TO VERIFY IDEAS * REALITIES * REASONING *
IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS *
THOUGHT OF THE DAY * PERCEPTION * PERSPECTIVE *
DATA * INFORMATION *
OPINION PIECES * LOGICAL THINKING * CRITICAL THOUGHT *
INTELLECTUAL LAZINESS * IDEA
THE IDEA EMPORIUM

blue green idea

 

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elsa with ideas
coming soon
PODCASTS
WITH DR ZEE

AND WITH
CALL-IN TIME
FOR
QUESTIONS,
OPINIONS,
EXPLORATIONS,
EXCHANGE

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QUESTION:
CAN ONE LEARN
HOW TO THINK?
                             MORE
                             MOREEXPLORATION: DANGEROUS USES
OF RIGHTEOUSNESS
                             MORE
                             MOREEXPLORATION:
DANGERS
OF TOLERANCE,
OF ACCEPTENCE
OF ALL OTHERS
AND
THEIR CUSTOMS -
included in
                             MORE
                             MORE GENERAL
DANGER:

ACCEPTING
IDEAS
INSTEAD OF
THINKING
THEM THROUGH
included in
                             MORETOP TWO
NON-SECRET
INGREDIENTS
OF
GOOD THINKING

                             MORE

MORE
EXPLORATIONS:

WHOSE DOG
IS IT ANYWAY? -
ON PETS,
OWNERSHIP,
AND SLAVERY
                             MOREGOOD
GAMBLING
vs
BAD
GAMBLING
                             MORETHE
ROTTWEILER
POPE,
THE DANISH
CARTOON,
AD MUSLIM
MODERATES
                             MOREANIMAL
RIGHTS -
AGE 7,
I TAKE ON GOD,
KNOW
HE IS WRONG
                             MORE