For those concerned about the growth of dangerous ideologies and crazy new theories, remember the following:

Inside every bad idea lie the seeds of its own destruction. Truth will always win out in the end; the only question is how long it takes.
It's easy to tell bad ideas from good ideas. Good ideas, like liberalism or science, explicitly invite criticism, welcoming the improvement that this brings. Bad ideas, like fascism or certain religions, forbid criticism, fearing the impact it may have on their followers' belief.
So, if anyone you know seeks to close down debate, or attacks anyone that questions their beliefs, ask yourself one question. If they are so confident that their beliefs are true, why are they afraid of those beliefs being criticised? 🤔
They may claim that they feel offended at their beliefs being questioned, and that debate must be closed down so as to spare their feelings. Anyone with contrary beliefs must be punished for voicing their hurtful beliefs, whatever that takes.
Don't fall for this. It's nothing more than an excuse to avoid defending a bad idea.

All ideas, good and bad, deserve criticism. It makes good ideas flourish, and bad ideas wither and die. Don't let people with bad ideas stop you saying what you believe to be true.
And if you find yourself adopting that attitude, feeling offense that your beliefs are under attack, the remedy is simple. Stop identifying yourself with your beliefs. People that attack your beliefs are not attacking you. They're trying to help you see the truth, as they see it.
They may be right, you may be right. Who cares? Everyone gets it wrong sometimes. No one is infallible. Our beliefs change over our lifetimes and so they should. No belief is so important it must be defended at all costs. Knowing the truth is far more important than being right.

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More from @ATBollands

26 Jul
It's hard to believe that it's 30 years and a few months since that fateful evening, driving through the wind and rain towards Lytham St Anne’s, when I suddenly saw how this material world of ours was put together... 1/n
I worked for an IT consultancy, and had been preparing a talk for a few weeks, which had taken a lot of my energy. I was trying to explain systems architecture, comparing developments in technology to the political upheavals we were seeing in the world.
The Soviet Union was falling apart, breaking into a commonwealth of independent states, while the countries of Europe were drawing together into an ever closer union. These were seen as opposing forces but they weren’t; they were both leading towards a similar federated structure
Read 35 tweets
13 Feb
Just realised this morning, it’s 30 years - almost to the day - since that evening, driving through the wind and rain towards Lytham St Anne’s, that I suddenly saw how this material world of ours was put together...
I worked for a company called Andersen Consulting and had been preparing a talk for the previous few weeks. I was trying to explain systems architecture, comparing developments in technology to the political upheavals we were seeing in the world.
The Soviet Union was falling apart, breaking into a commonwealth of independent states, while the countries of Europe were drawing together into an ever closer union. These were seen as opposing forces but they weren’t; they were both leading towards a similar federated structure
Read 34 tweets
20 Aug 19
This is my Short Solution to the Hard Problem of Consciousness, which I presented to the Oxford Philosophical Society in August 2019. It is very concise, and glosses over some important aspects, but nevertheless appears to work.

Unless you think otherwise... ImageImage
Thank you to everyone that has read, liked, retweeted or commented on this Short Solution over the past two weeks. It's been great fun defending my argument and its conclusion against the various objections raised, some of which were really quite inventive.
Objections varied according to the objector's intuitions: traditional physicalists tend to object to Stmt A; traditional panpsychists tend to object to Stmt B; while some objected to the interpretation of 'N=1', saying that a single particle cannot experience the life of a human.
Read 14 tweets

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