Critical Thinking Skills

How To Improve Your Critical Thinking Skills

Find out how enhancing analytical thinking can help you in all areas of your life.  Learn why common sense and logic are essential for your journey.

Enhancing Your Critical Thinking Skills

The field of spiritual exploration might seem like an odd place for the study of analytical processes. However, these vital reasoning tools are essential for life.  Studying these skills will enhance your awareness and increase your problem-solving ability.  This will help you avoid many common roadblocks in your day-to-day activities.

What we think affects “how we think,” and how we think affects the health of our mind.  One way to measure our mind’s health is by the breadth of our awareness.  Awareness enables one to be open-minded, a freethinker who can consider and analyze additional information.  They can change their worldview based on new evidence.

“Your life experience can only be as deep as your awareness.” — Bryant McGill

When we learn how to think more clearly, we make better decisions.  We use four primary components to make decisions; our use of critical thinking and logic, the emotions we attach to the subject, intuition, and our overall mental health.

“The essence of the independent mind lies not in what it thinks, but in how it thinks.” ― Christopher Hitchens, Letters to a Young Contrarian

Critical or analytical thinking skills can play a significant part in making our decision process accurate.  These skills don’t override our intuition or emotions, complementing one another.

“I believe in intuition and inspiration. Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to evolution. It is, strictly speaking, a real factor in scientific research.” ― Albert Einstein, On Cosmic Religion and Other Opinions and Aphorisms

What is Critical Thinking?

This type of thinking is a step-by-step method of gathering, analyzing, validating, and testing data.  The focus is on using sound evidence and logic to make informed decisions.

You would think everyone would want to enhance these skills.  However, organized religion sees this as a threat to their customer base.  If you think critically, you will start asking questions about the contradictory, illogical, and inhumane doctrines.  Organized religion does not want you to use these analytical tools to investigate their system.

So, for religion to keep you a customer, they rely on tactics we know today as groupthink manipulation.  These are the tactics of propaganda and censorship used to control thinking and values.  This allows someone to program your thinking in ways that violate your natural abilities of common sense.

Critical thinking skills are a range of mental strategies and cognitive tools that promote rational thought.  They improve your overall ability to determine facts from fiction.  They help you sort out what is valid from the illegitimate, and this is precisely why organized religion wants to control what you see and hear.  They want to keep you away from facts and logic that undermine their hold on you, their paying customer.

If the above definition of thinking critically sounds like science, you’d be right.  These are the tools that are at the heart of the scientific approach.  But it’s not just for scientists.  It comes in handy and day-to-day life. And it’s available to almost everyone who can use common sense.  The only thing that hampers it is the blinders of religious belief that create unhealthy bias and prejudice.

Studying these skills will also increase the clarity of thought and problem-solving abilities.  So, enhancing these skills is a way of improving your mind’s health.  A healthy mind is less susceptible to the tactics of groupthink manipulation. It is a vaccination against bias and prejudice.  This is the thinking what brings us all the advances and achievements of the modern world.  That means learning to think critically is good for you and the world.

Critical Thinking Toolbox

our monkey brain

A Suite of Logical Tools

These tools help us make decisions that yield accurate outcomes. We think they are essential today more than ever.  You’ll need them when swimming the waters of spirituality, but it is also vital in our day-to-day living.  Religion and politics are at the forefront of our lives.

Using these tools will help you spot errors and fallacies in many areas.  They help you discern fact from fiction and metaphor from mythology.  You can use them with almost every type of social media, from the internet to TV.  These tools are beneficial with news and religious programming.

We’ve put together a suite of these helpful tools, free resources to enhance your thinking and reasoning capabilities.  These resources include Logical Reasoning, Spotting Logical Fallacy, and The logical Axioms.

The first tool, Logical Reasoning, helps us see how arguments are used to sell us everything from toothpaste to ideologies. It’s one thing to buy the wrong toothpaste.  But, if you buy into a harmful ideology, you can harm yourself and others.

Spotting Logical Fallacy shows us the most commonly misused forms of logical arguments.  If we learn to recognize these ploys, we are less likely to buy into an illogical argument.

Last but not least is Logical Axioms.  This a list of the tactics and principles that you are most likely to encounter in the arena of religion and politics. Again, you learn to spot the misuse of common sense and logic, and then you are less likely to be sold on a bad idea.

These tools will enhance critical thinking, enabling you to discern facts from fiction.  Mark these articles in your favorites so you can return to them regularly to refresh your skills.

Comparative Analysis

Comparative Analysis is another valuable analytical tool. This is a systematic approach to research based on the scientific model.  It’s a method that compares ideas and beliefs from different worldviews.  And, yes.  These critical thinking skills can change your entire outlook on life.

This process introduces the challenge of comparing their beliefs to other worldviews.  Here we also learn why it is so important to use emotional checks.  It helps us research with the least amount of bias and prejudice.

Above all, the use of logical reasoning and comparative analysis will sharpen your ability to discern fact from fiction.  So, these aren’t just for research.  You’ll find a use for these tools every day.  Besides their use in religion and politics, it is also helpful with TV and Radio newscasts.

Self-Awareness

We all have unique life stories.  And so, everyone starts their spiritual journey in a different place.  Similarly, there isn’t one path that fits everyone. However, we think you should start with learning about yourself.  Several tools will help you in this aspect of self-discovery.

One tool we like for self-discovery is The Enneagram of Personality.  This tool uses a questionnaire to show you your ego’s default setting.  Your Ego includes the elements of your personality and instincts. Besides our Ego, we also have the programming of the cultural narrative.  Together these mechanisms make up our worldview or paradigm.  This is the filter through which we experience and value everything.

Finding out about these default scripts, values, and programming will give you the power to change them.  It will prove to you we are not our Ego.  It’s just a necessary tool for awareness and consciousness.   This is a good starting place for your spiritual journey.

Finally, our perception isn’t just about the physical world.  It’s also a reflection of our thoughts, emotions, and dreams.  Learning about who and what you are is key to your spiritual development. Above all, trust your intuition and common sense, and logic to lead you to the right teachers and sources.  Seek those who can teach you processes. Learn techniques for expanding awareness and exploring consciousness.

Spiritual Technologies

Spiritual technologies are what we call methods for exploring human consciousness.  These methods come to us from cultures all around the globe, and they comprise a diverse body of practical mental tools.  You can use these tools to develop your potential, open spiritual gifts, expand awareness, and reach higher states of consciousness.

We select the best of these ancient methods for our blended learning method.  These processes are time-tested by generations of use, and they stand up to the rigorous tests of science.

The techniques we use are repeatable processes, and several produce measurable effects on our physiology.  These changes include increased brainwave coherence, lower heart rate, and increased skin resistance. These changes prove these techniques produce states of consciousness that differ significantly from waking, dreaming, and sleeping.

Anyone can use these processes to develop their full potential.  They do not require faith or belief in any religious doctrine. All you need to do is follow the process, and it’s like following the recipe for baking a cake.  If you combine the right ingredients in the right way and you get something delicious.

We divide these tools into four major categories:

Everyone has their own path, and you can start with any of these methods.  The more of them you use, the faster your progress.

Final Thoughts

Critical Thinking skills are a platform on which you build a better life.  Studying and using them is good for us and the world.  They protect us from falling prey to the tactics of harmful religious ideologies.

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References

Some other excellent resources to enhance your critical thinking include:

Joseph Campbell & Joseph Campbell’s book The Hero’s Journey, Wikipedia
Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus 471st ed. Edition by Ludwig Wittgenstein
The Undiscovered Self: The Dilemma of the Individual in Modern Society by Carl Jung
The Basic Writings of Nietzsche (Modern Library Classics)
If You Meet the Buddha on the Road, Kill Him! The Pilgrimage of Psychotherapy Patients by Sheldon B. Kopp
The Holographic Universe: The Revolutionary Theory of Reality by Michael Talbot (Author)
E=Einstein, His life, His thought and Influence on Culture by Donald Goldsmith and Marcia Bartusiak
Models For Critical Thinking: A Fundamental Guide to Effective Decision Making, Deep Analysis, Intelligent Reasoning, and Independent Thinking by Albert Rutherford

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