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Pensans comments on The Martial Art of Rationality - Less Wrong

42 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 22 November 2006 08:00PM

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Comment author: Pensans 23 November 2006 02:02:18AM 0 points [-]

Do we want "techniques" for finding the truth? I suppose if the truth is "the weight of this fruit for sale." But if the truth is more like "what I ought to be doing," there is something closer to the essence of personality involved. If my personality is gained as a technique at a truth dojo, then it does not feel like mine. The necessity of discovering certain truths personally rather through technical instruction is a limit on the usefulness of teaching.

Ultimately, the nature of rationality is a question that goes to essence of personality. If I am willing to receive only deductively derived formula as rational, then I have -- not only a technique of rationality -- but a particularly well-known and annoying personality. If I am willing to act on any emotional or intuitive vapor, then I have another well-known and annoying personality. We are all aware that the grounds upon which I am willing to believe and act are not just techniques of rationality -- they are part of our fundamental identities and determine the way that we form or do not form social relations with others.