What to do and why to do it!

How many times we already feel an impulse to immediately seek to satisfy a desire?

And how many times people follow arguments, based on these desires rather than relying on facts or rationality?

How many people, by virtue of a wish, were slow to realize that his brilliant idea, after all was not so bright?

When we believe in something because we want it to be true we face one of two paths:

-The path of imagination and creativity that makes us to go through the world of connectivity until we find the solution to a problem.

-The path of the consented ignorance of the facts, that is, without appeal to critical thinking, and that can lead to meaningless experimentation, to the limit of our capacity for perseverance.

Through critical thinking, as I understand it, we have a means to evaluate and improve our ability to judge and the options we are placed, or we have built, for deciding (evaluating alternatives, weighing against each other, so as to make it possible to choose between them) about a particular subject.

Critical thinking is the thought that involves the application of principles, standards and criteria in assessing options, practical and theoretical, with the aim of reaching conclusions on the possible options.

So what are the values, considered appropriate at the time, which are reflected in these standards and criteria?

Is not that critical thinking that can give a direction to our beliefs and our actions, unless that in a consistently way, we do the assessment not only of our cognitive abilities, but also of our feelings or emotional states. This would not be eventually the form more natural relaxed of living.

Even so, despite a choice or decision to be a way of thinking, it is not the most relevant part of critical thinking. It is the process of critical thinking that helps to structure and prepare the way for a choice.

This path provides information about relevant aspects, which will give rise to a new option created by us or on the relevant options available to make a choice.

A path where we will have to check, if needs are identified to build a strong enough argument, according to our point of view, to make a choice.

And in the construction of these arguments, what is the role of our emotions?

Emotions or states of consciousness that have to do with the excitement of feelings, i.e. the subjective reactions, pleasant or unpleasant that any of us can experience in a given situation, can easily lead us to “Wishful thinking”.

In the search for dive into pleasant feelings we are often faced with almost invisible, alerts, questioning whether the path we chose is a smart attitude.

If our thinking is reflective and worried about what to do or what to believe this may mean that we are looking for something that can justify our emotions and this something is closely linked to our beliefs and past experiences.

For example:

Watch this video and think how you would respond:

What consequences will have this accident in future decisions of these people?

“I shall argue, in other words, that critical thinking provides the crucial link between intelligence and emotions in the “emotionally intelligent” person. Critical thinking, I believe, is the only plausible vehicle by means of which we could bring intelligence to bear upon our emotional life. It is critical thinking I shall argue, and critical thinking alone, which enables us to take active command of not only our thoughts, but our feelings, emotions, and desires as well. It is critical thinking which provides us with the mental tools needed to explicitly understand how reasoning works, and how those tools can be used to take command of what we think, feel, desire, and do.” – Linda Elder

Some of these comments may have application in organizations, don’t you think?



One Response to Clarify the “Wishful thinking” through critical thinking

  1. Mark Zorro says:

    IMHO critical thinking is an essential brain gym activity but I think the relationship between the prefrontal cortex and the amygdala isn’t the only mindful flow. Our brains are wired in a myriad ways and critical thinking is one aspect of the way we utilize the human brain.

    I think the You-Tube video is an extreme example of something that would set our amygdala on fire, and if there is one criticism of critical thinking, if it becomes a test or show. If the extremes occur in our life, we will discover in those extremes what our natural response is. We are not all born to be firefighters, nor soldiers who deal with extreme situations.

    Critical thinking supports creative thinking, but it is still one form of thinking – and thinking itself isn’t necessarily the defining aspect of our judgement or decision making ability. I look at true mindfulness as our ability to not get caught up in the ebb and flow of our thoughts.

    In the course of my life, I could of course embrace extreme sports, but I am a middle of the road guy, I am a natural introvert and I like doing my own thing – so how critical thinking supports who I am, is more important then what it does to improve the revolutions of my decision engine. The whole idea of argument is great when one is a creative philosopher or a pragmatic computer scientist – but I can relate to neither, yet I draw from both because I appreciate the ability, skill and capability involved.

    I am more interested in how we settle our arguments not the critical thinking on show. I am sure we can award a prize for our show of critical thinking, but when I look at how human beings settle arguments – one extreme is war.

    So if the consequences and outcomes of critical thinking add to the whole, I am a great supporter of it, but if it blinds us because it becomes the most important form of thinking that we identify with – then I attach no importance to that – nor shall I battle it, there is enough battles and wars in this world, without my added my relativley unnecessary and needless challenge.

    I think awareness of the beauty and complexity of our mind is where critical thinking fits in – then I can see the rigor of it, as well as the beauty of the resulting development – then I can embrace unintended consequence and emergence as outcomes. I am all for meaningless experimentation, for that is a form of play, but I also recognize that too much of one kind of thing can reverse into consequences we would not deem to intend.

    Enjoyed reading your thoughts here, at the end of the end of the day – critical thinking has its place, but it is ours to discover and above all, it is accepting its challenge, hard work and difficulty. In that spirit I certainly do support the long term developmental process of critical thinking. I of course, endeavor to learn more from it, but there are so many palettes of educational wonder available today.

    Sometimes the real decision point is the creativity we attach to taking each breath that oxygenates our brain, rather than how we engulf our minds with more inputs or ways of thought. (Just thinking out aloud) 🙂


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