All of Matthew_Pianalto's Comments + Replies

W.K. Clifford gave a short, sweet argument for your position in his "The Ethics of Belief":

  1. Our beliefs inform how we act.
  2. Our actions affect other people.
  3. Therefore. our beliefs affect other people. (And to the extent that how you treat me IS something I have a right to make judgments about, it IS my business what you believe or prefer...)

Example: Cognitive therapy (vs. SSRIs like Prozac) - studies show that good cognitive therapy can bring about similar changes in brain patterns, and relapse is lower once treatment (or medication) is terminated. I don't know how expensive good therapy is (so the user-end costs might be the same), but Pfizer sure isn't making its buck on cognitive therapy. (You can google stats on SSRI use and comparative studies.)

"Archimedes, don't listen to what Aristotle said about Empedocles!" (Empedocles proposed a rough version of natural selection, and Aristotle rejected Empedocles' view as absurd in his Physics.) I suppose that might be "too anachronistic," depending upon just how much authority was given to Aristotle's teleological view of the world. I don't know that saying this would be forcing our own preferred conclusions on him.