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  1. #11
    Senior Member Habba's Avatar
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    I make assumptions to save time. It's no use to question every detail of everything. Assumptions are not 100% accurate, but they are accurate enough to keep you on the track.

    But then again, sometimes assumptions can be dreadfully wrong, and lead to catastrophic results.

    What's the point of this topic? I've failed to see it, and I think without a point this thread will be nothing but empty words of how everything can be anything and we can never be sure about anything. So, to build an interesting discussion here, we need more stuff! Examples, claims, statements, anything!
    "The present is theirs; the future, for which I have really worked, is mine."
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  2. #12
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    OK here's an example.

    Evangelists discussing politics.

    The evangelical wing of the republican party and (sometimes) those who align themselves with it generally have not been very open minded to changing their position when presented with hard facts showing that what they are doing is killing our nation.

    The more those who are ashamed of their ignorance are made aware of it, the more hopelessly they cling to their flawed convictions.

  3. #13
    A Benign Tumor PoprocksAndCoke's Avatar
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    If everyone just researched and quoted what is already proven, we would never get anywhere.
    "In order for the light to shine so brightly, the darkness must be present." -Francis Bacon

    "No matter how dark the moment, love and hope are always possible." -George Chakiris

  4. #14
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    Which is why scientist's hypothesize about the things they can't prove.

  5. #15
    A Benign Tumor PoprocksAndCoke's Avatar
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    ^Exactly.
    "In order for the light to shine so brightly, the darkness must be present." -Francis Bacon

    "No matter how dark the moment, love and hope are always possible." -George Chakiris

  6. #16
    darkened dreams labyrinthine's Avatar
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    Assumptions serve a purpose, but there can be a problem is it is embraced too readily, and/or held onto for too long.

    Based on the media presentation of "fact" and "analysis" it can seem like people do not know how to form an assumption rationally or how to question it. When bombarded with complex information from every side as we do in modern life, there needs to be some system for filtering it into something manageable that can be processed within a human mind. Fear and familiarity become two of the most powerful systems for generating assumption. When this is how the original assumption is formed, then that is typically how it needs to be replaced. An individual must be able to recognize reason and then choose to implement it as a new way of forming assumption, and not everyone will do this, and it is possible that not everyone can do this.

    There is also a lot of potential security in embracing closed systems of thought. These require certain hard assumptions that by their nature cannot be questioned or disproved. In the smaller context this can provide more closure and certainty than the more open systems of assumptions used in science, where there are varying degrees of certainty, but no assumption is held as sacred or off-limits to questioning if they aren't holding up against a new flow of information.

    I do think that many people genuinely do not see the difference between a hard, unquestioned assumption and an open assumption that is still used presently as a fact, but is not off-limits to being questioned and removed.
    Step into my metaphysical room of mirrors.
    Fear of reality creates myopic morality
    So I guess it means there is trouble until the robins come
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  7. #17
    mod love baby... Lady_X's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscoBiscuit View Post
    Please weigh in on this topic!

    I think that assumption acts like the training wheels to logical thought. For those who are too lazy to take the time to do the research, or those who are to ashamed to admit what they don't know.
    presumptuous bastard! who says they do!
    There can’t be any large-scale revolution until there’s a personal revolution, on an individual level. It’s got to happen inside first.
    -Jim Morrison

  8. #18

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    I humbly suggest that the main reason why anybody makes any sort of assumption in any sort of scenario is to save time and effort.

    Sometimes this is done because there isn't much of a choice, such as in a medical emergency or other crisis situation. Sometimes, as any overworked and under-appreciated parent will tell you, this is done to divert time and energy elsewhere, such as in the pursuit of a decent social life. Often this is done simply to avoid expending time and energy to begin with.

    I'm guessing that what you're really asking is, why do so many people people make such ignorant assumptions? To put it in economic terms, ignorant assumptions have negative externalities, caused by a divergence between personal cost and social cost. The average ignorant individual considers the personal benefit of his ignorance (the self-perception of intelligence or superiority) to exceed his personal cost, and hence indulges in lots of ignorant behavior.

    In contrast, ignorant assumptions have a net social cost- all of us collectively are worse off because of them. However, as ignorance is not significantly taxed or penalized, humanity collectively indulges in far more ignorance than what is socially optimal.

    Whatever it is done for, it is certain that we will have to make assumptions in our lives to allow us to get on with them- we can't spend everyday worrying whether our assumption that the laws of the universe will still hold through tomorrow. (Unless you're a theoretical physicist or something, in which case you could perhaps make a living out of it.)

  9. #19
    Senior Member Willfrey's Avatar
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    Assuming is quick, easy, and generally correct. You can mull over how it isn't always perfect, but I'll take the lack of perfection weighed against how inefficient it is to go back and fact check. Yes there are isolated cases where assuming gets you into trouble, but far and large for the general day-to-day operations assuming is key. It's only the times when we assume incorrectly do we ever remember it.

    It looked cold from my window this morning. I didn't have to go outside to check, I just took my coat and went to work.
    ...Then I ducked my head and the lights went out, and two guns blazed in the dark;
    And a woman screamed, and the lights went up, and two men lay stiff and stark...

  10. #20
    Crazy Diamond Billy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiscoBiscuit View Post
    Please weigh in on this topic!

    I think that assumption acts like the training wheels to logical thought. For those who are too lazy to take the time to do the research, or those who are to ashamed to admit what they don't know.
    I think assumption is good in general but can be bad if its not used correctly. It is not possible ot know all, therefore we have to fill in gaps in the logic to make a ore coherent picture. As long as people are willing to work on thier assumptions as new facts evolve and show themselves assumption is good. When people use their assumptions as the truth even though its known to be wrong is when they turn negative.

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