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Critical Thinking - "How to Understand Everything"

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Ashley Cook

on 16 February 2013

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Transcript of Critical Thinking - "How to Understand Everything"

An in-depth guide to help you know yourself better, use your brain for thinking, predict the future, know what’s important, and ask the right questions. How to Understand
Everything How to Identify Important Information The saying, "Don't miss the forest for the trees," means that you don't want to be so focused on the details that you miss the big picture.

At the same time, though, you don't want to neglect the details because you're only looking at the big picture. Identify one aspect of the image that you deem important. Identify the words you consider important. Father McKenzie,
Writing the words of a sermon no one will hear,
No one comes near
Look at him working,
Darning* his socks in the night when there’s nobody there.
What does he care? Who to the What Now? Your understanding of a situation grows as you gather information until you have enough awareness to make a decision about what to do next.
However, just because we have enough information to choose a course of action doesn't mean that there isn't more information to be had. If someone asks you to help them pick a baby gift for a pregnant friend, what is the first question you ask? Imagine that you work at a car dealership. Your job is to sell a new car to Susan. There are three options for her to look at: *Darn – mend a hole in knitted material by weaving yarn across the tear with a needle. Learning to intuitively ask the right question. The Six Most Important Questions You Could Ever Ask. You Need to Get Your Priorities Straight. Girl Boy or ? Details
Susan - Susan is buying a new vehicle
for her family.
- Susan's favorite color is blue. However, it is possible that more information might change the right choice for Susan.
To decide what
question to ask next,
review the information
that you already know
about Susan. - She's buying a vehicle.
- The vehicle is for her family.
- Her favorite color is blue. Details about Susan What one word can you learn more information about that might change Susan's needs? Details about Susan - She's buying a vehicle.
- The vehicle is for her family.
- Her favorite color is blue.
- She has a family of six. Look into the Future...
What do You See? Predicting Outcomes and Probable Consequences To anticipate the results of something, study the details of a situation and make a logical assumption about what will happen as a result of the observed elements. Don't Be Dumb How to Reason, Rationalize, and Spot Logical Fallacies Reasoning Rationalizing Logic & Logical Fallacies Wait, I'm Not Perfect? And How Do You
Know That? "Eleanor Rigby” Words and Music by John Lennon & Paul McCartney © 1966. Renewed 1994. SONY/ATV Songs LLC. Administered by EMI Blackwood Music Inc. (BMI). All rights reserved. International copyright secured. "There are genuine mysteries in the world that mark the limits of human knowing and thinking. Wisdom is fortified, not destroyed, by understanding its limitations. Ignorance does not make a fool as surely as self-deception.” – Mortimer J. Adler, – Rick Riordan, The Lightening Thief – Charlotte Brontë, Jane Eyre The Difference Between Assumption and Inference An assumption is something we take for granted or presuppose. An inference is a step of the mind, an intellectual act by which one concludes that something is true in light of something else’s being true, or seeming to be true. If we believe that it is dangerous to walk late at night in big cities and we are staying in Chicago, we will infer that it is dangerous to go for a walk late at night. Usually it is something we previously learned and do not question. It is part of our system of beliefs. If our belief is a sound one, our assumption is sound.

If our belief is not sound, our assumption is not sound. Beliefs, and hence assumptions, can be unjustified or justified, depending upon whether we do or do not have good reasons for them. Consider this example: “I heard a scratch at the door. I got up to let the cat in.” My inference was based on the assumption (my prior belief) that only the cat makes that noise, and that he makes it only when he wants to be let in. We assume our beliefs to be true and use them to interpret the world about us. We take for granted our belief that it is dangerous to walk late at night in big cities. How to Read a Book: The Classic Bestselling Guide to Reading Books and Accessing Information The first step to analysis is to realize and remember that you don't know everything and that's okay. "Humans see what they want to see." Your own perception plays a large role in how you understand and interpret the meaning of anything. "You are human and fallible.” Your skepticism or belief in something does not change whether or not it is true. Do not hold too firmly to the concept that your beliefs and opinions are always correct; when there is sufficient evidence to the contrary, be open to hearing that evidence and evaluating your position. “The man who views the world at fifty the same as he did at twenty has wasted thirty years of his life.” –Muhammad Ali “Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism. Confronting your fears and allowing yourself the right to be human can, paradoxically, make you a far happier and more productive person.” – David M. Burns Recognizing Your Own Limitations, Biases, & Fallibility Criticalthinking.org Copyright ©2011
Foundation for Critical Thinking If you come at me with a knife in your hand, I probably would infer that you mean to do me harm. Inferences can be accurate or inaccurate, logical or illogical, justified or unjustified. Get Your Facts Straight, Dude. In the absence of insufficient evidence, suspend judgment until you're able to investigate things further. Think about things in a logical manner and select the most sensible choice or solution. ra·tio·nal·ize - verb - \rash-n-lz, ra-sh-n-lz\ 1. To bring into accord with reason or cause something to seem reasonable. © 2013 Merriam-Webster, Incorporated A logical fallacy is, roughly speaking, an error of reasoning. When someone adopts a position, or tries to persuade someone else to adopt a position, based on a bad piece of reasoning, they commit a fallacy. Copyright © 2009 Logical Fallacies Who? What? When? Where? How? Why?
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