Sunday, April 7, 2019

What's so great about unwavering beliefs?

That someone has unwaveringly stuck to the same beliefs or principles or values throughout their life is often said as if it were a compliment, but it isn't. The fact that you've consistently believed something isn't particularly valuable in itself. You might be consistently right, but you could be consistently wrong. So consistency of beliefs is not the best standard to apply when judging, say, a political leader. More useful tests are how flexible and adaptable you are, and how reliably you recognize truths and reject falsehoods. You don't get any bonus points for resolutely standing by what's irrational or false. If you have a false belief, the worst thing you can do is to keep believing it, and the best thing you can do in the future is to change.