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Suryc11 comments on Welcome to Less Wrong! (2010-2011) - Less Wrong

42 Post author: orthonormal 12 August 2010 01:08AM

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Comment author: Suryc11 01 November 2011 09:13:35PM 6 points [-]


I'm 18 years old, American, and a sophomore in college.

I discovered this site through HPMoR in December of last year, but did not seriously start reading the Sequences and other posts until the past half year or so. This site played an instrumental role in de-converting me; I had grown up in the Midwest in a very fundamentalist Christian household. After becoming firm in my atheism (untheism + antitheism), I sadly stopped lurking on here, until I became interested in philosophy and the rationality as espoused on LW.

I have always been considered "smart" in school, or to put it more specifically, I was well-optimized for succeeding in the United States' public educational system. Similar to probably a non-trivial number of posters on here, the U.S.'s approach to (public) education almost completely failed me - not necessarily saying the system is broken, but it is/was broken for me individually. My high school taught to the lower denominator, and even after both skipping a grade and deciding to graduate a year early, I was never challenged in school. I never discovered my academic interests, never was intellectually stimulated, and in fact, was socially pressured into downplaying my intelligence whenever possible. This is not to say that I was blameless. I have always fallen prey to akrasia, and this combined with low standards in school contributed to me not exploring my intellectual boundaries and accepting the worldview I was brought up in.

Thankfully, because of a life-changing event (in summary: went halfway across the country to a top 15-ranked private college, accepted an Army ROTC full scholarship, partied too hard, realized I abhorred the military, decided not to contract with the Army, realized after almost failing first semester that my work ethic from high school was not enough, and transferred to my state's flagship college for the second semester) I was forced to re-evaluate my worldview, confront any hidden assumptions, make my personal philosophy as coherent as possible, and really discover what I wanted to do with my time on this pale blue dot.

Currently I'm at my third educational institution (small, private liberal arts college) in two years and finally feeling simultaneously happy and intellectually stimulated. I'm looking forward to reading more insights on this blog and applying them to my life whenever possible. Perhaps I may even chime in if I'm feeling particularly courageous, but I'm a lurker by nature.

Just wanted to finally introduce myself and say thanks to all of you here for helping me turn my life around for the better!

Comment author: kilobug 02 November 2011 04:25:50PM 1 point [-]

Welcome here !