In this article, Eliezer says:

Bad argument gets counterargument. Does not get bullet. Never. Never ever never for ever.

Recently, a similar phrase popped into my head, which I found quite useful:

Confusion gets curiosity. Does not get anger, disgust or fear. Never. Never ever never for ever.

That's all.


I don't know what you mean precisely by confusion, but I personally can't always control what my immediate primal level response is to certain situations. If I try to strictly avoid certain feelings, I usually end up convincing myself that I'm not feeling that way when actually I am. I'd rather notice what I'm feeling and then move on from there, it's probably easier to control your thinking that way. Just because you're angry doesn't mean you have to act like angry.

0[anonymous]6y"Make yourself feel curiosity" is not very concretely actionable in the short term. If you want to coin near-mode actionable advice, instead of a far-mode affirmation of positive emotions, you might say something like, "The proper responses to feelings of confusion are orienting and exploring behaviors". Those behaviors should be unpacked to more specific things like looking at your surroundings, asking questions of nearby people, searching your memory for situation-relevant information, and planning an experiment or other (navigable) (causal) path to sources of information. Those levels should be fleshed out and made more concrete too. Now that I've given some helpful advice, I think I've earned an opportunity to express some cynicism: cheering for curiosity and exploration over anger, disgust, and fear shows a stereotypical value alignment of affluent, socially tolerant people in safe environments. The advice you give will not serve you will in adversarial games like chess. It will not serve you well in combat or social competition. It is in many situations harmful advice. Separate and unrelated, I would not like to see this template for inarticulately expressing advice continued. Mostly I say this for the same reasons that we don't make use of reaction .gifs and image macros on lesswrong. There is also a small concern that variants of familiar phrases are harder to evaluate critically, much as the mnemonic device of rhyme apparently [] makes some specific phrasings of claims more credible than others phrasings of those same claims.

Open thread, January 25- February 1

by NancyLebovitz 1 min read25th Jan 2014318 comments


If it's worth saying, but not worth its own post (even in Discussion), then it goes here.