All of sara-34's Comments + Replies

Sam Harris and the Is–Ought Gap

I haven't finished reading the comments here, so it's possible my mind will be changed.

I actually see the difference between these two arguments (represented by Sam Harris and Hume) as being a buckets issue. Sam Harris puts "ought" in the same bucket as "is." In most cases, the thing that causes harm or joy is relatively obvious, so there is no problem with having "ought" and "is" in the same bucket. The problem with having things in the same bucket in general is that we tend to forget that the bucket ex... (read more)

The 3 Books Technique for Learning a New Skilll

Sadly, there aren't a lot of books dedicated to suicide intervention, so it's harder to make a list for that.

The 3 Books Technique for Learning a New Skilll

I love your thoughts on this. As someone who has studied educational design and psychology, I'd like to offer a perspective on what you're describing.

In educational psychology, there are three categories of educational goals: knowledge, skills, and attitudes. (Presently, there is a bias against teaching attitudes, so the "KSA" is frequently changed to "knowledge, skills, and abilities," which is incorrect and redundant.)

It seems that your "What" book represents the knowledge of the field, the "How" the s... (read more)

This sounds like a topic worth digging into. Don't suppose you have a curated list of books (or other resources) to share?
The 3 Books Technique for Learning a New Skilll

Buddhism: What: What Makes You Not a Buddhist by Dzongsar Jamyang Khyentse Rinpoche (There are probably books with more detail and a more broad view, but I love this one for how it contrasts ideas from popular culture with Buddhism to highlight similarities and differences, making it very accessible); How: Meditation Is Not What You Think by Jon Kabat-Zinn; Why: Bring Me the Rhinoceros by John Tarrant (It's not explicit in explaining the why, but presents zen koans that cause you to enter the mindset of letting go of assumptions)

Crisis Interventi... (read more)

I have read a lot of books on Buddhism, but the first in your list is the only one I have even heard of. I will have to check them out.
Sadly, there aren't a lot of books dedicated to suicide intervention, so it's harder to make a list for that.
Anti-social Punishment

What is it about Protestantism that makes it different from all other religions in altruism, in your opinion?

I ask as someone who grew up in a very Protestant-dominant culture.

Unknown Knowns

I think a little more goes into it with poker, at least with Texas Hold'em. The odds change every time a new card is laid down. The player who goes all-in before the flop might actually have a pair of Aces, but another player could still win with a flush once all the cards are down.

I'm not sure what your underlying point here is - I might not be disagreeing with you. One lesson I take from poker is that there is little cost to folding when the stakes are high, but a very large cost to betting and being wrong. It is safer to sit and watch for ... (read more)

The central point I'm making is that people often know that the kid with a backwards baseball cap and sunglasses is likely to be bluffing, even though they don't know that they know it, and thus it's an example of an unknown known. It is true that the cards change every hand, and so the kid may not be bluffing, but the probabilities don't change (for a given context), so the kid is just as likely to be bluffing each time (for a given context). Eg. on a 964 flop, if the kid is the preflop raiser, he could have AA, but on that flop he's likely to be bluffing, say, 80% of the time.
A Fable of Science and Politics

How so? Would internalizing and understanding the color of the sky prevent him from exploring?

I would argue that the color of the sky does matter because all of the other reactions described are realistic reactions, and the shape of their society will be altered by this new information. It's possible that any other discovery he makes on the surface will never actually come to be appreciated or used by the rest of humanity as they fight while he's in the wilderness if he doesn't take into consideration what will happen when others see the sky..

A Fable of Science and Politics

Ferris definitely had the most pro-science reaction. I worry about drawing conclusions about the "best" approach out of these archetypes. Ferris is the one that doesn't think for a moment about the societal impact his discovery will have. That's OK, but it's not necessarily a good guiding principle for behavior. Everyone depicted had realistic reactions that would be viewed as better or worse by different groups.

I'm not saying that you're wrong - at all. My very first reaction was that Ferris is "right." But I think which one we think of as "right" says a lot about our existing values.