Cognitive bias is confirmation bias is a filter of our worldview. It tells us what is acceptable and what is not. If it contains harmful and prejudicial programming, it diminishes the use of common sense and logic. This cheat sheet will help you spot the signs of negative bias.
We all have certain things that we like or dislike. These are biases. But, not all partiality is harmful. You may prefer the color blue and hate orange. The real issue is when you accept dangerous thought scripts and values.
We can get negative bias from several sources. Our families may have a harmful tradition of discriminating against people of a particular background, ethnic or racial prejudice. Religious belief is the largest contributor to these destructive values.
We are all prone to the mind trap of confirmation bias, which distorts our thinking and values. It is the tendency to interpret fresh evidence within the limitations of our existing beliefs. It makes perception easier but not more accurate.
Common Sense and Logic
Common sense is the ability to make rational decisions based on the available data criteria. Logic is a systematic approach to decision-making that uses evidence to arrive at conclusions. Both of these methods can be
Cognitive Bias Cheat Sheet Summary
Here’s an outline of the tools to help you recognize negative cognitive bias:
1) Identify your core beliefs
2) Analyze the rules of your sacred ground
3) Remove the harmful scripts and prejudice
4) Reprogram with positive scripts
This process is straightforward. The more detrimental programming you have, the longer it will take to move through these four steps. Let’s discuss the source of the programming.
Not all religions are harmful. For example, many ancient religions like Paganism and Eastern religions like Taoism have very few constraints over freethinking. With these systems, you can develop a unique path. They leave your ability to use logic and reason intact.
In contrast, The Abrahamic religions of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam (1) are built upon negative confirmation bias. It is the basis of their “chosen one” mentality. People believe they are” special” because of their membership in the cult.
These systems accomplish a high level of control with methods of continuous indoctrination. They use group and self-hypnosis techniques to establish deep emotional ties to fear. This programming triggers your fight and flight response. You learn to reject facts and ideas that conflict with their boundaries. The more exposure to these brainwashing techniques, the harder it is to correct.
Thankfully, there are ways to correct this brainwashing. You can unravel this kind of magical thinking if you can get them to “see” the flaws of the paradigm and its effects on their lives. It starts with identifying the harmful components of religious belief.
1) Identify Confirmation Bias
Identifying your sacred ground is the first step of the cognitive bias cheat sheet. We’ll say it right from the start, don’t skip steps. Follow the process, and it will work.
Religions affect our ability to reason in differing degrees. It all depends upon the size, number, and content of the boundaries of the faith. The more harmful the rules and limitations, the more it affects our ability to reason facts from fiction. We become more susceptible to negative programming as we expose ourselves to religious indoctrination. Even if you don’t follow a religion, it still affects you. Religious beliefs infect a society through its customs. These superstitions make their way into the laws.
Fictional ideas cause the most significant distortion of perception. So, the crazier and more far-fetched the beliefs, and greater their adverse effect on our ability to think.
“The Gospels, written many decades after the fact, are a blend of fact and fantasy—historical fiction—and although the proportions of the blend may differ from scholar to scholar, no credible historians take them at 100 percent face value.” ―
“Academics concede that the Bible’s text is full of “pious fraud.” They admit that there are two gods spoken of in the opening books and that as time went by, the two (Elohim and Jehovah) were fused into one, henceforth referred to as “Lord God.” They concede the errors, fiction, skewed facts, and accounts of characters who never existed. They admit the plagiarism, and that the Four Gospels were not written by the so-called “Saints” after whom they are named.” ―
What are your core beliefs? If you are a part of the Abrahamic tree, the afterlife and salvation are the cornerstone doctrines that come straight from ancient mystery religions of the Medditraian. The Semitic faiths are the rebranding of Assyrian, Babylonian, Egyptian, and Persian mythologies. They took everything, including the tools of indoctrination and prejudice.
“Acts as Historical Fiction The book of Acts has been all but discredited as a work of apologetic historical fiction.1 Nevertheless, its author (traditionally Luke, the author of the Gospel: see Chapter 7, §4) may have derived some of its material or ideas from earlier traditions, written or oral. But the latter would still be extremely unreliable (note, for example, the condition of oral tradition under Papias, as discussed in Chapter 8, §7) and wholly unverifiable (and not only because teasing out what Luke inherited from what Luke chose to compose therefrom is all but impossible for us now). Thus, our best hope is to posit some written sources, even though their reliability would be almost as hard to verify, especially, again, as we don’t have them, so we cannot distinguish what they actually said from what Luke added, left out, or changed.” ―
2) Analyzing the Rules of Religious Belief
If you are a member of one of the Abrahamic religions, this cognitive bias cheat sheet can be scary. We’ll ask you to examine the doctrines you feel you must defend. Many people get so entangled in their religion it becomes their identity.
An excellent place to start is with your Afterlife beliefs. What are the benefits? How much do they cost? What are the negative views it inspires towards people who don’t believe as you do?
Salvation is also a central topology for the Abrahamic traditions. How do these beliefs want you to treat others who don’t believe as you do?
“So this is the state of the Gospels: four contradictory, convoluted and reworked writings set down decades after the supposed events by unknown author or authors falsely being passed off as eyewitnesses, and all primarily derived from a single source, which as we’ll see, appears to be entirely literary fiction.” ―
“I do not pretend to be able to prove that there is no God. I equally cannot prove that Satan is a fiction. The Christian God may exist; so may the gods of Olympus, or ancient Egypt, or of Babylon. But no one of these hypotheses is more probable than any other: they lie outside the region of even probable knowledge, and therefore there is no reason to consider any of them.” ―
Western Organized Religion contains many harmful doctrines that promote bias and prejudice. Its sacred texts include the most contradictory and illogical collection of superstitions and mythology of any major religion. Those who propagate it use it to control and create cash flow. It’s a “system of indoctrination and programming” beginning with the youth. It’s a method of brainwashing to mold values and thinking.
With this kind of group and self-hypnosis, you can install thinking and behaviors without limitation. It establishes what is right and wrong. It reaches all facets of life, dictating personal and social values. These systems thrive on conflict selling genocide and war. They justify the discrimination of races, ethnicity, and gender while proclaiming they are agents of love. Teachers cherry-pick their holy texts to fit their needs. It’s the main reason we know them as false light.
Children are the most effective agents for change within these paradigms because children ask hard questions. Children are not afraid to point out the illogical inconsistencies. Many Sunday school teachers end up leaving Christianity because of the questions posed by innocent children. We see how children force adults to face their bias and discrimination.
3) Remove the Harmful Scripts and Prejudice
To remove them, you must not only identify them but determine that they are harmful. You’ll need to decide to change your thinking. If you understand how even seemingly harmless beliefs affect your thought processes, it will help you choose.
Right now, you might be saying to yourself, so what if I believe in an imaginary friend in the sky? What does that hurt? We’ll spend some time explaining why removing ideas like this is essential.
How Belief Affects Common Sense and Logic
Here’s how it works: Western Religion programs the mind to set up filters that trigger our “fight or flight reaction. We react to the threat as if it were a real physical danger. So, the more extreme your beliefs, the more violently you respond to the stimulus. And, the release of adrenaline in your systems means you stop using your critical thinking skills. You automatically reject any idea outside the boundaries of your paradigm and your ability to use common sense and logic is greatly diminished. Confirmation bias takes precedent, and you’ll fight to defend superstition and mythology.
We use a readiness to learn assessment to ensure participants are prepared to engage in the learning process. This assessment shows an inverse relationship between extreme religious beliefs and the ability to think rationally. It also indicates a high intolerance for ideas outside their current belief system.
In short, the more extreme your religious beliefs are, the less likely you perceive ideas outside your paradigm, which means you aren’t ready to learn. Not only will you disregard facts that conflict with your paradigm, but you’ll also likely disrupt the learning of others. You are a puppet of those who are behind the programming.
An easy self-test to determine your level of indoctrination is your emotional reaction to facts and evidence that challenge it. How are you doing right now? Are you having an adverse emotional response to this article? If so, this is a sign you are probably a follower of one of the Abrahamic religion sects. Let’s look at how learning about the correct use of logical reasoning can help unmask your vulnerability level. Many people find this the most challenging step in the cognitive bias cheat sheet.
A Little Logic Goes a Long Way
Here’s an example of how to spot the improper use of deductive reasoning and the “false premise.” We’ll use the Supreme Being Odin as our subject.
One of the most common ploys is for someone to ask you to prove their God does not exist. Turn the argument around. The burden of proof is on the person claiming the existence of something. It is especially true for entities without physical form.
The absence of physicality is not proof of absence. People will use the analogy of the milk bowl. They will say the lack of milk in a bowl is like their God. The problem is, this isn’t a valid analogy to prove Odin exists. Milk exists apart from the bowl; Odin does not. So, the absence of evidence is not proof of absence.
You cannot prove the non-existence of something that does not exist. For example, you cannot disprove the existence of Odin, but this does not prove he exists.
It’s impossible to prove or disprove things that don’t have a physical form. It’s impossible to prove gods don’t exist. However, that doesn’t mean they do. You cannot prove or disprove the existence of an imaginary entity including Apolo, Zeus, Mythra, Dyonisys, or any other god. Similarly, anecdotal evidence is not proof of the existence of gods. What you think is a picture of Jesus appearing in your toast is not proof he exists.
Let’s continue our discussion of God with one of our favorites, Odin.
Proving Odin Exists?
Let’s assume we meet someone who claims Odin exists. When we challenge them to provide evidence for the existence of Odin, we get the following response:
First, they point out that there are no ice-giants because Odin promised to kill them. Ergo, since there aren’t any ice-giants, Odin is obviously the one who took care of this problem. But we aren’t done yet.
Secondly, there are many stories of Odin dating back through oral traditions in Germanic mythology over 3,000 years. There are stories about Odin (from Old Norse Óðinn) in ancient forms of Paganism that reach from outer Russia, Scandinavia to the British Iles where he is known in Old English as Wóden, Old Saxon as Wōden, and Old High German as Wuotan or Wodan. That’s a much broader range of people than Jesus of the New Testament.
Therefore, with such a large amount of evidence from many authoritative sources over thousands of years, you have to concede it proves Odin exists. The answer to these arguments is, no, sorry, you’re mistaken. Neither of your arguments proves the existence of Odin.
First, the absence of imaginary creatures like ice giants doesn’t mean they ever existed. Nor does the lack of ice giants mean Odin (if he ever lived) had anything to do with their absence today. Second, just because someone writes something down doesn’t mean it happened, especially when talking about mythological people or creatures. Repeating stories does not suffice as proof for the existence of Odin, and these points apply to all mythologies, superstitions, imaginary friends, and enemies, not just Odin.
This example shows us how superstitious fallacies, circular logic, and misuse of an argument are used to tell a story. Using common sense and logic reveals the problems with false propositions.
Okay, I’m Done with Mythology and Superstition!
Removing religious scripts isn’t easy. The longer you believe something, the more it gets ingrained in our psychic structure. The more you expose yourself to religious programming, the more it reinforces these scripts. We have several tools to get you started if you are ready for this step. Here are some you can start with:
4) Reprogram with Positive Scripts
So, did you make this far in the process, or are you skimming ahead to see the last step? If you did follow the process, you’ve identified and at least have begun removing the prejudice and bigotry you discovered. Great for you. Feeling “raw” and worn-out is common. You’ve completed some serious inner work and can begin to rebuild healthy psychic structures.
Common sense and logic are the natural analytical tools that help us discern facts from fiction. Western organized religion dominates most of the cultural narrative. So, minimizing your exposure to religious beliefs and harmful programming will help you think more clearly. Follow the steps provided in the cognitive bias cheat sheet, and you will change yourself and the world.
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(1) Abrahamic Religions, Wikipedia