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View Poll Results: How blindly do you trust superior entities?

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  • Not at all

    2 10.53%
  • Very little

    3 15.79%
  • Slightly

    10 52.63%
  • A good amount

    4 21.05%
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  1. #21
    Senior Member UniqueMixture's Avatar
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    @ygolo I understand, but I think the subconscious message "They are x I am y because x =//= y. I am not x." is sent. Also, questions like these tend to be representative of subconscious fears imo which is why they are "abstracted."
    For all that we have done, as a civilization, as individuals, the universe is not stable, and nor is any single thing within it. Stars consume themselves, the universe itself rushes apart, and we ourselves are composed of matter in constant flux. Colonies of cells in temporary alliance, replicating and decaying and housed within, an incandescent cloud of electrical impulses. This is reality, this is self knowledge, and the perception of it will, of course, make you dizzy.

  2. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by WhoCares View Post
    I cannot place a calculator in the same position as a spiritual entity. One you can crosschck the answers while the other has few checks and balances that are measurable. For one, the jeopardy of the outcome is low, the other could be massive. So my degree of willingness to trust or follow one over the other is variable and dependant upon the specific advice and and circumstances at hand.
    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    This was my thought as well. There are machines and processes that spit out the right answer as long as nothing is broken, and this answer is verifiable through other means. I have a lot of trust in processes and machines that seem to be established on sound principles. For example, I trust my car to operate consistently rather than running me into a tree, I've flown in airplanes, I use electrical devices without fearing to be electrocuted as long as I don't use them in the bathtub (or some other working conditions we all know), I trust the refrigerator to keep my food unspoiled for eating, I trust medicine I buy at the store to work as directed within its normal range of behavior, etc. We all trust a lot of processes and items implicitly, once we get a sense of how they work and can weigh them as effectual from experience.
    These are the products of human activity. The principles on which these are create were also described by human beings. So are you not inherently trusting the factory workers, engineers, inspectors, executives, regulators, etc. when you trust these things?

    However, people often trust machines, medicines, and other human creations with very little thought. Why do you believe this is the case? Are there actually some warm-fuzzies that come along with the completely depersonalized products of human activity?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    This is very different from a human being's opinion of spirituality, kind of on the opposite end, as spirituality cannot be "proven' at all or established as operating under a specific sense of principles. Instead we have different philosophies, and the most we can do is judge them historically (if they make any historical claims) or in terms of outcome if they presuppose a particular process to generate a particular conclusion.
    I am not sure historicity has any bearing on this. Maybe I am wrong. Can you explain?

    It seems to me that a "does it work" mentality can be applied here too, no? Are there actually no spiritual principles? Or are they just harder to discover?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    For me, I actually do handle these two very different items similarly, though, in terms of principle. I first establish how trustworthy it is --are the principles consistent, do things work as claimed -- and then I weigh it accordingly. It's just that physical processes, machines, and the like are naturally far more trustworthy; people are fuzzier in both their behavior and knowledge, and their beliefs cannot be tested as strongly as to whether they work or not, as there are always exceptions, misunderstandings, contextual factors, etc.
    What is it about physical processes that seem more trustworthy than people? Is the the relative simplicity?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    What happens when I evaluate people? I guess at best I judge the veracity of the person; Are they consistent? Do they normally show good understanding of the world? can they reasonably predict outcome correctly? What is their own judging process like -- are they trying to test their own ideas too? Have I know them to lie in the past? Or make mistakes? What do their lives look like? What is it the outcome of their own choices, typically? This gives me an idea of the person's general accuracy and insight and sincerity levels, and helps me establish trust.
    There are certainly a lot of factors involved. For me, it is a subconscious, or even unconscious process of trusting someone. Sometimes the process itself isn't that great and I end up trusting those that I should not. I used to be a lot more credulous and trusting than I am now. Usually, now, I am only fooled when I am either too eager, too lazy, too much in a hurry, too unprepared, or too much in agreement to spot the errors or warning signs.

    Unfortunately, not trusting someone who I should have is something I will be unlikely to discover.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer View Post
    Note that even if I believe someone is typically trustworthy as well as wise, it doesn't mean they are infallible. I can give a person more credit if they have an established track record, and if I believe there is no way for me to confirm or deny their suppositions myself -- there is no good way to "test" them -- but typically if something seems to be outside of the normal range of behavior or claim, I'll typically test the idea rather than trusting it. As soon as there is an inconsistency, then I now have a question/doubt about it that I need to do something with.
    Yes. I do this too. I wonder if this is what people call "Ti" on this forum, or if it is just normal human skepticism.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
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    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
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  3. #23

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    Quote Originally Posted by UniqueMixture View Post
    @ygolo I understand, but I think the subconscious message "They are x I am y because x =//= y. I am not x." is sent. Also, questions like these tend to be representative of subconscious fears imo which is why they are "abstracted."
    I am not sure I follow. I'll expand on my own interpretation of your responses:

    Who would be "they" and who "I" in this situation? The "superior entity" is "them" and I would be "I"?

    Also, is the fallacy (that subconsciously may be inferred) is that this "superior entity" has the ability to do x, while I am not this "superior entity" and therefore I do not have the ability to do x?

    The subconscious fear then would be that "I may not be able to do x", whatever that x may be?

    If this interpretation is correct, how is this necessarily harmful to growth?

    I've stated this before, but I don't believe fear is inherently a bad thing. If it is rooted in reality, it provides a good way to protect oneself from potential harm. If it is not rooted in reality, then it can be harmful. Someone who is either counterphobic or ignorant of real dangers in the world can put both himself and those he cares about in danger.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
    Robot Fusion
    "As our island of knowledge grows, so does the shore of our ignorance." John Wheeler
    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  4. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    These are the products of human activity. The principles on which these are create were also described by human beings. So are you not inherently trusting the factory workers, engineers, inspectors, executives, regulators, etc. when you trust these things?
    Yes, I am trusting to a degree that that people who were assigned to build such devices had established track records and built them according to reasonable specification. Again, we get into the "purchase decision" process with this, which is another form of what you are describing -- note the competition between brand names (for example) and generic, where with generic you are taking a chance that the product will still behave as desired even if it is not subject to the same branding or R&D or thorough testing that the name brand is. Here, you are willing to accept lesser performance in order to save money, because it is still "acceptable" performance. Or compare it to airlines, where the trust factor drops for particular airlines when performance takes a hit via the discovery of flaws and/or tragedies.

    Some of our trust in those situations is "fuzzy" trust -- we know the product is being widely used with little report of negative events, hence we get a sense of the product as trustworthy and the range over which is has been shown to be trustworthy.

    However, people often trust machines, medicines, and other human creations with very little thought. Why do you believe this is the case? Are there actually some warm-fuzzies that come along with the completely depersonalized products of human activity?
    Well your original question was asking me how I approached the matter personally. If you want to expand it to include other people besides me, I think we each have different processes we use to judge trust and performance, and some people use different criteria than I do. Obviously some people accept things unrelated to performance (such as tradition, or emotional gratification/rush created by an ad campaign or a particular sponsor, etc.) as judges of the item's ability.

    I am not sure historicity has any bearing on this. Maybe I am wrong. Can you explain?
    It has SOME bearing. For example, if we can prove a guy named Jesus existed, that's one link in the chain of accepting the rest of the Jesus claims. If we can prove a city existed at that time that fits with a city in the narrative, that's another link. And of course, if you have a witnesses example of a particular miraculous event that can be corroborated, that would be a much larger link in the chain. A lot of various independent links, hooked together, can create a chain of larger proportion. For me, it's still not "foolproof," but it lends credibility, and lots of times we are forced to make decisions based on less than complete information.

    It seems to me that a "does it work" mentality can be applied here too, no? Are there actually no spiritual principles? Or are they just harder to discover?
    Well,there is an issue where (I think) spiritual principles still usually are contextual rather than entirely universal, unless the rule is general enough. Many cultures seem to independently come up with some broad concepts such as protecting the innocent, protecting someone's property, protecting people from harm, etc. ANd they make rules and punish such crimes accordingly. Because if they do not, society tends to crumble in a predictable way. THere are other rules that seems less obvious, that cultures and individuals show more variance over.

    And then of course you get into spiritual claims where someone says "God believes such-and-such is wrong" but the evidence itself is inconclusive, whereas maybe another religion doesn't believe in a personal human-like God at all, and the same.

    What is it about physical processes that seem more trustworthy than people? Is the the relative simplicity?
    Why not drag this into the T vs F thing? Impersonal truth vs personal truth? The impersonal rules can be reached by anyone following universal reasoning principles, whereas the personal rules are far more... personal... often making sense to only the person who has concluded them. Processes are based on impersonal principles and "how things work," whereas the people truths are based on personal principles and what resonates with the person.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

    “Pleasure to me is wonder—the unexplored, the unexpected, the thing that is hidden and the changeless thing that lurks behind superficial mutability. To trace the remote in the immediate; the eternal in the ephemeral; the past in the present; the infinite in the finite; these are to me the springs of delight and beauty.” ~ H.P. Lovecraft

  5. #25
    Senior Member UniqueMixture's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    I am not sure I follow. I'll expand on my own interpretation of your responses:

    Who would be "they" and who "I" in this situation? The "superior entity" is "them" and I would be "I"?

    Also, is the fallacy (that subconsciously may be inferred) is that this "superior entity" has the ability to do x, while I am not this "superior entity" and therefore I do not have the ability to do x?

    The subconscious fear then would be that "I may not be able to do x", whatever that x may be?

    If this interpretation is correct, how is this necessarily harmful to growth?

    I've stated this before, but I don't believe fear is inherently a bad thing. If it is rooted in reality, it provides a good way to protect oneself from potential harm. If it is not rooted in reality, then it can be harmful. Someone who is either counterphobic or ignorant of real dangers in the world can put both himself and those he cares about in danger.
    your interpretation of what I said is correct. my challenge to you is "what if reality is perception?" or "what if by perceiving differently you can alter reality?" So much of -who- we are is defined by other people's REACTIONS to us. however, by changing our perception and forcing others to change theirs by CHALLENGING their tropes while altering body language, behavior, and outer appearance we change their reaction and thus the mutual perception. this is what Se types refer to as "fronting"
    For all that we have done, as a civilization, as individuals, the universe is not stable, and nor is any single thing within it. Stars consume themselves, the universe itself rushes apart, and we ourselves are composed of matter in constant flux. Colonies of cells in temporary alliance, replicating and decaying and housed within, an incandescent cloud of electrical impulses. This is reality, this is self knowledge, and the perception of it will, of course, make you dizzy.

  6. #26

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    Quote Originally Posted by UniqueMixture View Post
    your interpretation of what I said is correct. my challenge to you is "what if reality is perception?" or "what if by perceiving differently you can alter reality?" So much of -who- we are is defined by other people's REACTIONS to us. however, by changing our perception and forcing others to change theirs by CHALLENGING their tropes while altering body language, behavior, and outer appearance we change their reaction and thus the mutual perception. this is what Se types refer to as "fronting"
    I suppose "fake it till you make it" is another way to say this. I am not sure how this is very different from having a vision of yourself in the future that is different from what you believe you are now, and making this happen.

    I still think the relevance to the idea of trusting someone or something who can do something better than me is a bit tenuous.

    We cannot be all things. I think it is perfectly OK to trust people or things who have gotten better at certain things than me. But I will try to sanity check and make sure what they are doing for me or advising me of makes sense. I answered "slightly" on my own poll.

    Accept the past. Live for the present. Look forward to the future.
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    "[A] scientist looking at nonscientific problems is just as dumb as the next guy." Richard Feynman
    "[P]etabytes of [] data is not the same thing as understanding emergent mechanisms and structures." Jim Crutchfield

  7. #27
    Senior Member UniqueMixture's Avatar
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    Yeah, I hear you. You're being realistic. I just get pissed at "the game" and want more intps to play it to their advantage because I think the world would be a better place if more people like you were in positions of greater influence/power.
    For all that we have done, as a civilization, as individuals, the universe is not stable, and nor is any single thing within it. Stars consume themselves, the universe itself rushes apart, and we ourselves are composed of matter in constant flux. Colonies of cells in temporary alliance, replicating and decaying and housed within, an incandescent cloud of electrical impulses. This is reality, this is self knowledge, and the perception of it will, of course, make you dizzy.

  8. #28
    Emperor/Dictator kyuuei's Avatar
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    Not to offend all of the people that voted 'slightly' but I find this mentality to be childish. "If I can't understand it, it must not make sense." I don't know how many times I've had to deal with people making jobs more difficult on themselves and others just because they don't want to trust the people that work over them even a tiny bit.

    "WHAT?! I have to work the weekend?! That doesnt make any sense, I worked LAST weekend!" Cue stomping around, and bursting into my office all pissed off and red-faced.
    Me: "You requested your brother's wedding off next month. So-and-so said they'd agree to it if they went to a wedding this month, so I switched ya'll on the schedule."

    Then suddenly, the light bulb comes on, and instead of just trusting me to do the basics of my own damn job they have to go crazy and complain and worry about what EVERYONE ELSE is doing.

    Its even worse with army people. They worry about what this unit is doing, why this squad gets to wake up late, why these people don't have to do PT and they do... It's ridiculously selfish. They claim they trust their supervisors, but at the first sign of something looking bad for them, they start to cry.

    /rant.
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  9. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by ygolo View Post
    Every question biases the results. How would you have preferred it phrased?
    True, good point. Still, the word "blindly" seems particularly negative to me, connoting ignorance, as in "the blind leading the blind". I suppose "To what extent do you trust superior entities?" would seem more neutral to me. That is in my culture, however. I didn't comment further because I wasn't sure how widespread that opinion may be.

    Can you unpack this a little? How does your own competence the area in question affect how much you trust? Are you talking about trust in the entity as a whole (not just competence in a particular domain)? How does the significance and time frame affect how much you trust?

    It seems from the specific scenarios, what you perceive to be a potential for loss is important, and that the greater the potential for loss, the less you will trust. Is this right?
    Well, I've been trying to break it down, but it seems incredibly multifaceted to me.

    I would say yes, absolutely, the greater significance (ie more potential for loss), the less I trust. If I just delegate trust without fact-checking, I feel like that's me ducking out of my inherent responsibility to use my abilities to try to make a good world. The more riding on the decision, the more people who will be affected by the information we use, the more it's important to make sure that it's the best information available.

    However, the more time I have, the less I trust, since verification of information takes a good deal of time. To expound upon my doctor example, if someone was clearly having a medical emergency, I would probably place a great extent of my trust into the nearest doctor's decisions - the medical profession generally being a humanitarian one, most doctors in my country undergoing years of intense training, and me not having enough time to fact-check before risking a life. It would be a calculated risk.

    The more competence I have in an area, the less I trust, since that makes fact-checking much more quick and easy on my part. If I'm an expert, I'm likely to know almost immediately if something is risky or not.

    The less I feel comfortable around a person, the less I trust. I had a previous supervisor who irked me because she seemed narcissistic and unreliable. Sure enough, it eventually came to light that she made up her own rules and often twisted others to her own benefit, while screwing the rest of us. I think instinctual impulses and intuition are helpful in terms of knowing when you need to investigate. Sometimes you might find nothing, and sometimes you might find layers of complexity, but other times you find lies and intentional misinformation.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jennifer
    It's just that physical processes, machines, and the like are naturally far more trustworthy; people are fuzzier in both their behavior and knowledge, and their beliefs cannot be tested as strongly as to whether they work or not, as there are always exceptions, misunderstandings, contextual factors, etc.
    This is true. Physical processes are perhaps most trustworthy because they weren't built by or aren't operated by fuzzy people. Then machines, which reek of humans. Then humans, who are messy and complex.

  10. #30
    @.~*virinaĉo*~.@ Totenkindly's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kyuuei View Post
    Not to offend all of the people that voted 'slightly' but I find this mentality to be childish. "If I can't understand it, it must not make sense."
    I don't think I voted because I think the categories are malleable... i.e., in some contexts I don't trust others at all, in other contexts I very much do.

    I agree with your complaints about the specific behaviors you are describing; in that context, a lack of trust is rather simplistic, self-absorbed, and emotionally immature. However, some people who might have answered "slightly" are likely to have other contexts in mind, so it seems kind of a mistaken broad brush to introduce your post with this line.
    "Hey Capa -- We're only stardust." ~ "Sunshine"

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