Wednesday, April 24, 2024

How To Develop Critical Thinking

"Critical thinking is the intellectually disciplined process of actively and skillfully conceptualizing, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and/or evaluating information gathered from, or generated by, observation, experience, reflection, reasoning, or communication, as a guide to belief and action."

In short, critical thinking is the ability to question the information presented to you.

Reinforce your critical thinking abilities with reading...

If you read non-fiction books of similar subjects you will encounter situations where there's contradictions either amongst the authors or with your own experience. You, the reader, will need to think about who's right/wrong and that exercise is what ultimately develops your critical thinking abilities. 

Critical thinking is a lost art because not enough people are reading or being exposed to situations that requires them to think critically. Society suffers when there's not enough critical thinkers.

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

The Torch of Knowledge

We must learn from our ancestors, sprinkle in some of our own knowledge, and pass it on to the next generation hoping that they’ll do the same. Shame is having to relearn a lesson from the history of our civilization. We must keep pushing our understanding, perfect it, make it easier to learn, for the benefit of students that will follow in our footsteps.

Life is short - we are but carriers of the torch of knowledge. We’re but messengers in the canvas of our civilization.

Read, learn every day, become all that you’re supposed to be, share your lessons with the hopes that someone will learn from your mistakes. Make tomorrow better from your contribution.

Wednesday, April 10, 2024

Growing Up Is A Choice

As a kid, I would look at adults with awe because I believed that they had everything figured out. Now that I'm an adult I realize that not only do most people don't have everything figured out they're basically thinking the same way as they did when they were kids.

“Growing old is mandatory, but growing up is optional.” 
-Walt Disney (or Charles Theodore Davis)

While you'll never have everything figured out, you must live your life in such a way that if you were to look back 5 years ago you can see how much progress you've made since. Gray hair, by itself, isn't a good enough indicator of how "grown up" someone is.

How do I "grow up"?

You need to plan for it as it won't happen naturally. You need constantly challenge your philosophies for life, read and associate with people that are better than you so that some of their experiences can rub off on you.

Wednesday, April 3, 2024

A Snippet of The Book of Politics by Aristotle

I’ve learned 3 things from reading this book:

  • Books translated from Greek are difficult to read. 
  • Aristotle expects the reader to be versed in everything else going on in his day which makes his work difficult to read. 
  • The methods with which a tyrant takes over a government were the same 2500 years ago as it is today.

Some notable thoughts taken from the book:

“They who love in excess also hate in excess.”
-Aristotle, Politics

“All constitutions are overthrown either from within or from without; the latter, when there is some government close at hand having an opposite interest, or at a distance, but powerful.”
-P. 207 from “Politics” book by Aristotle (Translated by Benjamin Jowett)

“History shows that almost all tyrants have been demagogues who gained the favour of the people by their accusations of the notables.”
-P.216 from “Politics” book by Aristotle (translated by Benjamin Jowett)

"...The tyrant is also fond of making war in order that his subjects may have something to do and be always in want of a leader. And whereas the power of a king is preserved by his friends, the characteristic of the tyrant is to distrust his friends, because he knows that all men want to overthrow him, and they above all have the power."
-P.226 from “Politics” book by Aristotle (translated by Benjamin Jowett)

“Every man should be responsible to others, nor should anyone be allowed to do just as he pleases; for where absolute freedom is allowed there is nothing to restrain the evil which is inherent in every man.”
-P.244 from “Politics” book by Aristotle (translated by Benjamin Jowett)

“No one will doubt that the legislator should direct his attention above all to the education of youth, or that the neglect of education does harm to states. The citizen should be moulded to suit the form of government under which he lives. For each government has a peculiar character which originally formed and which continues to preserve it. The character of democracy creates democracy, and the character of oligarchy creates oligarchy; and always the better character, the better government”
-P.300 from “Politics” book by Aristotle (translated by Benjamin Jowett)

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