• It’s sometimes reasonable to believe things based on heuristic arguments, but it’s useful to be clear with yourself about when you believe things for heuristic reasons as opposed to having strong arguments that take you all the way to your conclusion.
  • A lot of the time, I think that when you hear a heuristic argument for something, you should be interested in converting this into the form of an argument which would take you all the way to the conclusion except that you haven’t done a bunch of the steps–I think it’s healthy to have a map of all the argumentative steps which you haven’t done, or which you’re taking on faith.
  • I think that all the above can be combined to form a set of attitudes which are healthy on both an individual and community level. For example, one way that our community could be unhealthy would be if people felt inhibited to say when they don’t feel persuaded by arguments. But another unhealthy culture would be if we acted like you’re a chump if you believe things just because people who you trust and respect believe them. We should have a culture where it’s okay to act on arguments without having verified every step for yourself, and you can express confusion about individual steps without that being an act of rebellion against the conclusion of those arguments.

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