Your cognitive dissonance makes you vulnerable

If you are living half-consciously, you can expect that the simple act of explaining an argument might change your mind. The solution, of course is to live in full consciousness. But that will require a possibly painful process of weeding out all sources of cognitive dissonance.

Your Beliefs Are Malleable

Many years ago, while teaching my first college level course in Human Sexuality, I was having a bit of difficulty dealing with two students who seemed to always be at each other’s throats. Each time a controversial topic (e.g., abortion, homosexuality, pornography) was covered, their open disagreements seemed to escalate into full blown arguments. After a few weeks of this I’d had enough, and I executed a plan designed to teach them (and the rest of the class) to expand their horizons and to find common ground. I asked all of the students to write a short paragraph expressing their positions on a list of ten sex-related topics, and to turn it in after they had signed it. They were then instructed to write a research paper in which they attempted to support the opposite of their own opinion on one of the topics in the list. This is an old trick, and I expected a bit of resistance and protest, but I had faith that most would follow through and learn from the experience.

Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed.

Subscribe to RSS Feed Follow me on Twitter!
var OB_langJS = ''; var OBITm = '1351717354630';var OB_raterMode = 'none';var OB_recMode = 'strip'; var OutbrainPermaLink=''; if ( typeof(OB_Script)!='undefined' )OutbrainStart(); else { var OB_Script = true; var str = unescape("%3Cscript src=\'\' type=\'text/javascript\'%3E%3C/script%3E"); document.write(str); } **/?>