It would be one thing if humanity’s biggest problem was assumptions unfounded in experience. I might learn something when my assumptions were contradicted by experience. But humanity has a much worse problem than that, in my opinion. We don’t believe things because they are actually happening or because we are actually experiencing them. We believe things to be true because they feed the appetites of the animal soul.
“Beliefs are primarily founded upon what is wished for, not on what is actually happening and not on what is genuine.They may in fact represent the greater ideals of humanity and in this they bear a true reflection, but on a day-to-day basis, and in most practical questions, people base their beliefs on things they hope for, not on things that actually exist.” (Steps to Knowledge, Step 5, “I believe what I want to believe.“)
And what are these appetites? Survival, sex (species survival), pleasure (as observed by Sigmund Freud), power (as observed by psychologist Alfred Adler), and avoidance of responsibility (as observed by psychologist B. F. Skinner) As I pondered this step, I thought to myself, “I say, the human condition is insanity, isn’t it? Any connection between what is actually so, and what people believe is so, is purely coincidental, isn’t it? And we’re in big trouble, up a stump, up a creek without a paddle, aren’t we?”
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