In search for excellence through critical thinking and...

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Published on October 23, 2017

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slide 1: In Search for Excellence through Critical Thinking Thought Leadership March 2012 By Harris A. Samaras Pytheas Social Political Review slide 2: Copyright © 2012 Pytheas Limited 18 March 2012 2 Pytheas Social Political Review About the Author – Harris A. Samaras An Economist and presently the Chairman CEO of Pytheas an international investment management organization Harris has also worked with the Bank of America Group Thomson Financial BankWatch and Moody’s Investors Service. His expertise lies primarily in the areas of investment and corporate banking private equity and finance corporate restructuring risk management and business development strategic advisory and thought leadership. His research and extensive publications in these areas range across practice rather than theory economic and business thought entrepreneurship and geopolitics. He has been an adviser to various governments central banks financial institutions and other corporates and has been a member of the board of directors of multinational organizations. slide 3: Copyright © 2012 Pytheas Limited 18 March 2012 3 Pytheas Social Political Review The men below – statesmen philosophers explorers scientists generals inventors artists businessmen – have been accused or characterized at some point of their lives as dreamers misfits unreal unusual odd strange bizarre enigmatic eccentric egocentric blasphemous heretic radical even insane and crazy... What is it that they have in common Solon Socrates Pericles Pytheas Leonardo da Vinci Galileo Galilei Thomas Edison Albert Einstein George Soros Steve Jobs Bill Gates Could it be you Intelligence Yes they can be characterized as intelligent but Attila the Hun Ataturk and Hitler are reported to have been intelligent but their leadership caused the suffering of millions... Success Yes but success can be very subjective... and one can almost be certain that their road to success has not necessarily been to the liking of all those that they came across... and the decisions they have taken down the road have indirectly or directly changed the lives of many and not always for the better... Let’s see Solon 638 - 558 BC the Athenian statesman lawmaker and poet the reformer one of the seven wise men of Athens credited with having laid the foundations of Athenian democracy believed that a lawmaker should work only on laws that were possible to improve without a total revolution “the best that they are possible to receive”. At a time when Athens was in disarray – poor farmers were becoming serfs of the rich when they could not pay their debts and the landless were enslaved and sold abroad territorial groups could not be controlled by the weak central government so the city split into factions – Solon took it upon himself to try to fix the city single-handed. He realized that he had to slide 4: Copyright © 2012 Pytheas Limited 18 March 2012 4 Pytheas Social Political Review create a balance between the classes. The vehicle for that balance was the creation of a middle class. And he wrote the constitution. Nothing can withstand the challenge of new times and the power of critical thinking he argued and it is critical thinking that will eventually direct change to the right path. And the constitution is change towards the right path... Solon writes in one of his poems: The New Dimension is peaceful and all work here just as they do on Earth. It’s a place where learning knowledge and wisdom are essential to that work. It is not corrupt like the Earth Plane and there they are free from all of the corruption that exists on Earth today. We created this New Dimension for growing and learning as we did Earth. Minds here are advanced as the knowledge that was acquired on Earth is now attuned to the minds of New Dimension souls. It is a slow process for all souls’ minds to learn and absorb knowledge and wisdom. Love is the answer for all kinds of souls to advance in the Universe. Through love knowledge and wisdom are well earned. Critical thinking the Earth Plane has gotten off track forgetting or ignoring this most important key to progress. We all here in the Universe is working so hard with Earth souls to remind them that their purpose on Earth is to advance. First they must love themselves if they are going to love all of those around them if they are going to love other souls if they are going to help less fortunate souls with love and kindness. All of this is part of Earth lessons they must learn. Once this is understood we will attain peace of soul and mind... Progress is all that matters in the Universe Pericles 495 – 429 BC the Athenian statesman during Athens’ Golden Age during of which time Athens experienced a growth in intellectual and artistic learning orator and General the transformer of Athens into an empire and a dominating power student of Anaxagoras believed that only through an open society of humanitarianism equality and political freedom a state can flourish. “In an open society he argues each citizen needs to engage in critical thinking which requires freedom of thought and expression and the cultural and legal institutions that can facilitate this”. During “the Golden Age” scientists like Aristarchus Pythagoras and Eudoxus studied the origins of the universe the relationship between the Earth Sun and Moon that the earth is constantly moving the earth orbits the sun in an elliptical orbit and the moon orbits the earth with the same kind of orbit. Looking down from the North Pole Aristarchus explains the earth spins in a counterclockwise direction on an imaginary line its axis once every day – note that up until and beyond the Renaissance Europe wrongly believed that the earth was flat and all the planets including the sun revolved around it. Pythagoras of Samos and later Plato explain why Earth is spherical in shape and explain why the eclipses occur... Scientists such was Democritus but also philosophers before him argue and observe for the first time that all matter was made from tiny particles called atoms – it wasn’t until two thousand and three hundred years later that John Dalton revived the ancient Greek theory in order to explain chemical observations... Euclid wrote a book “The Elements” which was used for more than two thousand years to teach geometry... Aristotle explains for the first time the law of gravity... He also Aristotle lays the basis of zoology and Theophrastus botany... Hipparchus invents trigonometry... and later on Archimedes discovers the laws of the lever and pulley... Hippocrates explains that health problems have natural causes and have nothing to do with gods and daemons... and he operates on patients on a regular basis... It is the responsibility of the state to provide means and ways for its people to think not think for them In an open society each citizen needs to engage in critical thinking which requires freedom of thought and expression and the cultural and legal institutions that can facilitate this slide 5: Copyright © 2012 Pytheas Limited 18 March 2012 5 Pytheas Social Political Review Why has it taken the world more than two millennia to understand Was it a period of darkness caused by lack of developed critical thinking skills Socrates 469 - 399 BC the enigmatic classical Athenian philosopher teacher of Plato Xenophon Alcibiades Critias and Antisthenes one of the founders of Western philosophy the father of philosophy and to many the father of psychoanalysis believed that the highest form of human excellence is to question oneself and others. His insights and examination of key moral concepts such as “good versus evil” justice beauty love virtue the most valuable of all possessions self-realization were ahead of his time and to a certain extent of our time as well. Socrates felt that “evil” was nothing more than an outcome of ignorance and an unwillingness to learn about the other side and that those who did wrong knew no better mainly because they had not developed their critical thinking skills. The best way for people to live according to Socrates is by focusing on self-development. This fits in line with his core belief that he was merely wise because he knew that he knew nothing because the person who assumes that has the answer and assumes that has an accurate grasp of what is logical is the person that leads himself into tragedy... Critical thinking he argued is opposite of ignorance and conscientious stupidity... Wisdom begins with wondering thus one must begin with admitting ones ignorance. Socrates argued that a philosopher was the only type of person suitable to govern others because only a philosopher could apply his critical thinking skills into true thought leadership... He objected to any form of government that did not conform to his ideal of a perfect republic led by philosophers... because one has to have a comprehensive perception of life in order to govern and lead effectively... He often talked that “our daemons” a form of divine madness: a sort of insanity that gives us poetry love mysticism philosophy our inner voice is a type of externalization of our subconscious or our own thinking processes that we can control and comprehend only if we possess critical thought... Socrates explains that the soul before its incarnation in the body was in the “realm of ideas”. There it saw the things the way they truly were rather than the pale shadows or copies that we experience on the idea of the earth of mediocrity that we created for ourselves. By a process of questioning the soul can be brought to remember the ideas in their pure form thus bringing wisdom. Socrates two and a half thousand years ago preached openly against the 12 gods of Olympus and for one abstract god invited others to concentrate on friendship and a sense of true community find the common ground he preached argued openly against oligarchy and the priests that through religion they only polarize people vastly contributed to the field of epistemology on analyzing the nature of knowledge and how it relates to connected notions such as truth belief and justification – “we have to not only attend to things literally but also scientifically” practiced precisely the approach that was meant to liberate the soul and provide insight into a reality that was larger than our own pushed democracy and liberty to its limits dared to speak against the Athenian democracy because it oppressed and exploited slaves and women and dared to exclaim in a society where religion was supreme: how could a democratic society vote to sacrifice an innocent girl Pytheas 4 th century BC a Greek geographer astronomer and businessman from the Greek colony Massalia modern day Marseilles made a voyage of exploration to northwestern Europe close to or into the Arctic circle at about 325 BC travelled around and visited a considerable part of the British Isles the first person on record to describe the Midnight Sun the relationship of tides to the moon polar ice Germanic and Finnic tribes also from an anthropological point of view the one who introduced the idea of distant Hyperborea or Ultima Thule to the geographic and mystic imagination. Our daemons our inner voice is a type of externalization of our subconscious or our thinking process that we can best control and comprehend only if we possess critical thought Whether an explorer of new worlds or an explorer of life it requires perfect virtue and boldness courage and vigilance to truly achieve and enjoy freedom… slide 6: Copyright © 2012 Pytheas Limited 18 March 2012 6 Pytheas Social Political Review Pytheas’ journey is remarkable not just for the fact that he recorded it but because he was a true explorer chronicling the people he met and places he visited giving an insightful account of pre-historic northern Europe and its people. Not until the beginning of the 20 th century and to Arctic explorers Fridtjof Nansen and Vilhjalmur Stefansson were we able to explain and confirm his descriptions of the many strange and fascinating accounts he had experienced including the strange mixture of fog air ice and water in those wild windy and frigid seas. Reaching Greenland which is part of the North American continent 1400 years before Leif Ericson and 1900 years before Christopher Columbus crowns Pytheas as the Explorer of explorers. It makes one wonder what kind of skills and leadership charismas one should possess to achieve what Pytheas achieved two and a half thousand years ago and the despair and frustration he must have felt when he returned to his hometown only to be tagged a crazy... Leonardo da Vinci 1452 - 1519 the Italian Renaissance polymath a painter sculptor architect musician scientist mathematician engineer inventor anatomist geologist cartographer botanist and writer whose genius perhaps more than that of any other figure epitomized the Renaissance humanist ideal often been described as the archetype of the Renaissance Man a man of "unquenchable curiosity" and "feverishly inventive imagination" believed that for the development of a complete mind one should study the science of art study the art of science develop his/her critical senses especially learn how to see realize that everything connects to everything else. Galileo Galilei 1564 - 1642 an Italian physicist mathematician astronomer and philosopher who played a major role in the scientific revolution the father of modern observational astronomy the father of modern physics and the father of modern science who at a period of darkness while facing death and torture by the inquisition when he was accused by the Catholic church for “vehement suspicion of heresy” uttered: “And yet it moves”. Imagine at a time such were the Dark Ages a period of intellectual darkness that lasted for more than five centuries a handful of thinkers such was Galileo Galilei not only dared to defy torture and death and the stereotypes of the time but possessed and developed those skills that enabled him to think critically and create. Thomas Edison 1847 - 1931 an American inventor and businessman who’s incredible ability to come up with a meaningful new patent every two weeks throughout his working career added more to the collective wealth of the world and had more impact upon shaping modern civilization than the accomplishments of any figure since Gutenberg the inventor of the phonograph the motion picture camera a longer-lasting electric light bulb and the first genuinely safe and economically viable system for generating and distributing light and power one of the first inventors to apply the principles of mass production and large teamwork to the process of invention often credited with the creation of the first industrial research laboratory. His passion and quest for answers driven by a superhuman desire to fulfill the promise of research and invent things to serve mankind often ascribed him as peculiar to the extent that a number of “medical authorities” of the time have argued that he may have been plagued by a fundamental learning disability that went well beyond his deafness... Others had conjectured that this mysterious ailment along with his lack of a formal education may account for why he always seemed to think so differently compared to others: "Always tenaciously clinging to those unique methods of analysis and experimentation with which he alone seemed to feel so comfortable...”. For the development of a complete mind one should study the science of art study the art of science develop his/her critical senses especially learn how to see realize that everything connects to everything else Philosophy is written in this grand book the universe which stands continually open to our gaze. But the book cannot be understood unless one first learns to comprehend the language and read the letters in which it is composed Through critical to creative thinking and problem-solving ideas become reality and the best way to have a good idea is to have a lot of ideas slide 7: Copyright © 2012 Pytheas Limited 18 March 2012 7 Pytheas Social Political Review Albert Einstein 1879 - 1955 a German-born theoretical physicist who developed the theory of general relativity effecting a revolution in physics discoverer of the law of photoelectric effect father of modern physics and one of the most prolific intellects in human history believed that the development of general ability for independent thinking and judgment should always be placed foremost not the acquisition of special knowledge. Einstein argued that it is not enough to teach a man a specialty. Through the specialty he may become a kind of useful machine but not a harmoniously developed personality. It is essential that the student acquires an understanding of and a lively feeling for values. He must acquire a vivid sense of the beautiful and of the morally good. Otherwise he with his specialized knowledge more closely resembles a well trained dog than a harmoniously developed person. He must learn to understand the motives of human beings their illusions and their sufferings in order to acquire a proper relationship to the individual fellow-men and to the community… George Soros 1930 - a Hungarian-born businessman investor financier and billionaire Chairman of Soros Fund Management LLC and Chairman of the Open Society Institute supporter of progressive-liberal causes and philanthropist developer of the theory of reflexivity based on the ideas of Karl Popper and author is known as the man who broke the Bank of England 1992 and “accused” for triggering the Asian Financial Crisis 1997. Steve Jobs 1955 - 2011 an American businessman designer and inventor best known as the co-founder chairman and CEO of Apple Inc. widely recognized as a charismatic pioneer of the personal computer revolution and for his influential career in the computer and consumer electronics fields. After losing a power struggle with the board of directors of Apple in 1985 he returns in 1997 as its interim CEO when the company is near bankrupt. Under his leadership in 1998 Apple becomes profitable and by 2011 it becomes the world’s most valuable company. Bill Gates 1955 - an American business magnate investor philanthropist and author co- founder former CEO and current chairman of Microsoft consistently ranked among the worlds wealthiest people one of the best-known entrepreneurs of the personal computer revolution. Soros Jobs and Gates have all been characterized by an amazing ability to find the flaws or see opportunities or connect the dots by an ability to zoom in to details with precision or zoom out to the big picture by a constant charisma to flip back in time or fast forward to the future and by the ability to focus on the merits of the idea or innovation before worrying about the business case. All characteristics of a critical thinker... Whether a World War II refugee or school drop-outs Soros Jobs and Gates mastered the charismas required to achieve and through developing their critical thinking skills thinking outside-the-box thinking strategically defying the obvious against the status quo thinking creatively with passion and purpose established empires against all odds Three critical thinkers that have been amongst the most influential of the 20 th and 21 st century... So what does Solon Pericles Socrates Pytheas da Vinci Galileo Edison Einstein Soros Jobs and Gates have in common Is it intelligence and brilliance courage and vigilance curiosity and imagination passion and purpose vision and creativity Yes probably all of the above but none alone could have made them achieve the remarkable and extraordinary accomplishments they did achieve contrary to common belief of their times practice and understanding unless they possessed critical thinking skills: To exhaust the answers to their own questions of ideas the “whys” and the “whynots” the “cans” and the “cannots” the “hows” and the “hownots” the “whatifs”. They are all critical thinkers acknowledged for their achievements and accomplishments to the extent that some if not all have been characterized by either history or by their peers enemies and opponents as “Great” men. The important thing is not to stop questioning. Curiosity has its own reason for existing Education is not the learning of facts but the training of the mind to think We all possess charismas but have we ever bothered to develop them or had the curiosity to master them slide 8: Copyright © 2012 Pytheas Limited 18 March 2012 8 Pytheas Social Political Review Now Are all critical thinkers “Great” men or are all “Great” men critical thinkers We seem to consider a “Great” man to be someone who had a positive impact on people and society. Solon Socrates Plato Aristotle Martin Luther King Nelson Mandela Mahatma Gandhi are unquestionably great men whose actions were beneficial to millions. But then what about the others What about Alexander the “Great” Attila the Hun Napoleon Hitler or Lenin As Machiavellian or ruthless as you might want to make them they all participated in shaping the world we live in today. They as well must have possessed critical thinking skills that guided their decisions and achievements... But the latter cannot be “Great” from the view of a true or ideal critical thinker being influential or a great leader does not make one into a true critical thinker. Socrates explains it best through his life and legacy: The critical thinker should possess not only inquiry but also intellectual integrity must be humble and with skeptical attitude. A critical thinker cannot be dogmatic despotic or nepotistic. A critical thinker must argue freely according to conscience above all liberties. A critical thinker is logical thus he cannot be a conqueror of people or a warmonger. Above all a critical thinker is virtuous. What about their followers What about the followers of men and great leaders like Alexander the “Great” Napoleon and Hitler Yes it was different times and different circumstances and one cannot compare with the other but they all conquered people made slaves of people tortured or killed in the name of an idea their own idea that it was not necessarily the idea of the people they conquered. Well what about the people that followed these men In the case of Hitler for instance could he have caused such horrific suffering and death without millions of unquestioning patriotic followers Walter Lippmann explains: “The German experiment except to those who are its victims is particularly interesting... For the Germans are the most gifted and most highly educated people who ever devoted the full strength of a modern state to stopping the exchange of ideas they are the most highly organized people who ever devoted all the coercive power of government to the abolition of their own intellectual life they are the most learned people who ever pretended to believe that the premises and the conclusion of all inquiry may be fixed by political fiat". It was a conditioned lack of mass self-awareness along with love of ease unwillingness to dispel social and moral delusions headlong rush into the mindless attitude that "everything is okay" that “forced” the majority of the German people to follow Hitler. It was lack of the ability to think critically. A whole nation lived in denial polarized by a leadership that cleverly and systematically “indoctrinated” its citizens by “selling” to them what they wanted and liked to hear touched and entertained their complexes to such an extent that discrimination was acceptable elimination of the thinking elements of their society was made tolerable because they were somehow convinced that they were a threat mass murder and torture as a means to an end bullying and jingoism were all unobjectionable because the followers lacked critical thought and their leadership lack thought – a society of madness. What about superpowers All empires and superpowers i.e. Sumerian Persian Egyptian Greek Roman Byzantine Ottoman British Soviet have collapsed and all failed because of a variety of reasons but none more prominent than these four: a over-extension of limited resources i.e. debt b corruption c loss of their vibrant innovative middle class and d seriously poor judgment on the part of leadership. These four reasons have one common denominator: critical thinking or rather the lack of critical thinking skills. And what about the dominant and influential superpowers of the present and their followers... What is an idea without critical thinking An idea is a thought or suggestion a concept or mental impression as to a possible course of action. But how can one make an idea materialize formed shaped if he or she does not possess critical thinking skills Even the idea itself how can it be generated if one does not ask “Why” “How” or “What if”. And when would one know when is the best “When” for the Critical thinking is not an intellectual option for the few it is a necessary tool for discovering what kind of people we have allowed ourselves to become A critical thinker must argue freely according to conscience above all liberties slide 9: Copyright © 2012 Pytheas Limited 18 March 2012 9 Pytheas Social Political Review idea to best take shape into a “project” or be best optimized optimum scenario for the idea adopted realized How can one ask the best Why How What if or When if that person is not in a position to identify the aspects and parameters that make that idea a brilliant idea that is not just an idea but also a “sensible” one How can one be courageous and vigilant and fight for and pursue the “right” cause project or idea How can one be curious enough to become imaginative about life’s pleasures and rewards How can one be creative and fulfill his vision with passion and purpose How can one become a contributing and productive member of society but first to himself How can one respect himself and others How can one master the essence of life Can a “sensible” idea emerge without critical thinking And can an idea be actively and skillfully conceptualized applied analyzed synthesized generalized evaluated observed experienced reflected reasoned or communicated best as a guide to belief and action with clarity accuracy precision consistency relevance sound evidence good reasons depth breadth and fairness if it is not “embraced” by a critical thinking process It cannot Critical thinking entails the examination of those structures or elements of thought implicit in all reasoning – purpose problem or question-at-issue assumptions concepts empirical grounding reasoning leading to conclusions implications and consequences objections from alternative viewpoints and frame of reference. Critical thinking in being responsive to variable subject matter issues and purposes is incorporated in a family of interwoven modes of thinking – such are scientific thinking mathematical thinking historical thinking anthropological thinking economic thinking moral thinking and philosophical thinking. But no one is a critical thinker through-and-through or can be as it depends to the critical thinker’s insights and deficiencies tendencies and self-delusion and that is merely why the development of critical thinking is a life-long endeavor. Also when critical thinking is grounded in selfish motives it is often manifested in the skillful manipulation of ideas in service of one’s own or ones groups’ vested interest e.g. Hitler and Nazism. As such it is typically intellectually flawed however pragmatically successful it might be. When grounded in Socrates’ virtue and intellectual integrity it is typically of a higher order intellectually though subject to the charge of idealism by those habituated to its selfish use. And one being a critical thinker does not necessarily mean that he or she will be a successful business person or a leader of people unless his or her critical thinking skills are enhanced by passion determination perseverance courage hard work insight and organizational abilities. The Hellenistic Era philosophers argued that if you are to master the meaning of life if you are to be whole as a person and a true member of society if you are to be a leader and at least be able to lead yourself to the quest for life and excellence you will need to develop your critical thinking skills. On a broader perspective the spirit of enlightenment and the renewal of philosophy and what it entails is dying with the slow death of the “cultivation of critical thinking”… The demand for true “freedom” and social justice is fading with the direct and indirect silence or confinement of those intellectual circles and voices that over time “motivated” and gave food for thought critical thought for people to live with virtue and courage… and to assume responsibility of own life through creativity vision hard work planning innovation… in search for excellence The development of critical thinking is a life-long endeavor Only the trained mind is prepared to see through the way things look on the surface to the way they really are beneath the surface slide 10: Copyright © 2012 Pytheas Limited 18 March 2012 10 Pytheas Social Political Review Critical Thinking Pioneers From Socrates method of probing questioning who set the agenda for the tradition of critical thinking establishing the importance of seeking evidence closely examining reasoning and assumptions analyzing basic concepts and tracing out implications not only of what is said but of what is done as well the need in critical thinking for clarity and logical consistency to Plato Aristotle and the Greek sophists all of whom emphasized that things are often very different from what they appear to be and that only the trained mind is prepared to see through the way things look to us on the surface to the way they really are beneath the surface the deeper realities of life. From this ancient Greek tradition of thought emerged the need for anyone who aspired to understand the deeper realities to think systematically to trace implications broadly and deeply for only thinking that is comprehensive well-reasoned and responsive to objections can take us beyond the surface. Then to the Middle Ages with thinkers such was Thomas Aquinas who to ensure his thinking met the test of critical thought always systematically stated considered and answered all criticisms of his ideas as a necessary stage in developing them. In the Renaissance with scholars such were Colet Erasmus and More who highlighted the importance to think critically about religion art society human nature law and freedom. And Francis Bacon who was explicitly concerned with the way we misuse our minds in seeking knowledge and who in his “The Advancement of Learning” argued for the importance of studying the world empirically and the problems in thinking when based on blind rules and poor instruction. Descartes who in his “Rules for the Direction of the Mind” argued for the need in thinking for clarity and precision with emphasis to base thinking on well-thought through foundational assumptions. In the Italian Renaissance Machiavelli critically assessed the politics of the day and laid the foundation for modern critical political thought. He critically analyzed how government did function and laid the foundation for political thinking that exposes both on the one hand the real agendas of politicians and on the other hand the many contradictions and inconsistencies of the hard cruel world of the politics of his day. It was in this spirit of intellectual freedom and critical thought that people such as Robert Boyle Isaac Newton Copernicus Galileo and Kepler developed a far-reaching framework of thought which roundly criticized the traditionally accepted world view. The thinkers of the French Enlightenment such were Bayle Montesquieu Voltaire and Diderot who began with the premise that the human mind when disciplined by reason is better able to figure out the nature of the social and political world and who valued disciplined intellectual exchange in which all views had to be submitted to serious analysis and critique believed that all authority must submit in one way or another to the scrutiny of reasonable critical questioning. In the 18 th century thinkers like Adam Smith and Kant through the power of critical though and its tools produced “The Wealth of Nations” applied to economics and “Critique of Pure Thought” applied to reason respectively. In the 19 th century critical thought was extended even further into the domain of human social life by Comte and Spencer. Applied to the problems of capitalism it produced the searching social and economic critique of Karl Marx. Applied to the history of human culture and the basis of biological life it led to Darwin’s “Descent of Man”. Applied to the unconscious mind it is reflected in the works of Sigmund Freud. Applied to cultures it led to the establishment of the field of Anthropological studies. Applied to language it led to the field of Linguistics and to many deep probings of the functions of symbols and language in human life. In the 20 th century William Graham Sumner published “Folkways” in which he documented the tendency of the human mind to think sociocentrically. John Dewey agreed and from his work we have increased our sense of the pragmatic basis of human thought its instrumental nature and especially its grounding in actual human purposes goals and objectives. From the work of Ludwig Wittgenstein we have increased our awareness not only of the importance of concepts in human thought but also of the need to analyze concepts and assess their power and limitations. From the work of Piaget we have increased our awareness of the egocentric and sociocentric tendencies of human thought and of the special need to develop critical thought which is able to reason within multiple standpoints and to be raised to the level of "conscious realization." From the massive contribution of all the "hard" sciences we have learned the power of information and the importance of gathering information with great care and precision and with sensitivity to its potential inaccuracy distortion or misuse. From the contribution of depth-psychology we have learned how easily the human mind is self-deceived how easily it unconsciously constructs illusions and delusions how easily it rationalizes and stereotypes projects and scapegoats. slide 11: Copyright © 2012 Pytheas Limited 18 March 2012 11 Pytheas Social Political Review Sources Alphabetically ► Alec Fischer – Critical thinking an introduction ► Air University – Improving leadership through better decision making: Fostering critical thinking ► Ebookee – Ideas and Opinions by Albert Einstein ► Forum on Public Policy – Creative and critical thinking in the arts and sciences ► Glyn Hughes’ Squashed Philosophers – Discourse on method by Reni Descartes ► Glyn Hughes’ Squashed Philosophers – The advancement of learning by Francis Bacon ► Glyn Hughes’ Squashed Philosophers – The critiques of pure and practical reason by Immanuel Kant ► Insight Assessment – Critical thinking what it is and what it counts ► Intered – Less than critical thinking ► Mount Holyoke College – The history of the Peloponnesian War by Thucydides Pericles’ Funeral Oration ► Perseus Digital Library Tufts University – Plato Apology ► Perseus Digital Library Tufts University – Plato Crito page 45 ► Philip Coppens – Socrates that’s the question ► Project Gutenberg – Apology Crito and Phaedo of Socrates by Plato ► Project Gutenberg – Folkways by William Graham Sumner ► Project Gutenberg – Socrates by Voltaire ► Project Gutenberg – The advancement of learning by Francis Bacon ► Project Gutenberg – The descent of man by Charles Darwin ► Project Gutenberg – The prince by Niccoló Machiavelli ► Project Gutenberg – The Sceptical Chymist by Robert Boyle ► Project Gutenberg – Utopia by Thomas More ► Pytheas – Pytheas the explorer ► Robert Todd Carroll – Becoming a critical thinker ► Shoreline Community College – Critical thinking at Viterbo ► Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy – Karl Popper ► The Creative Mind with Douglas Eby – Thinking like Leonardo da Vinci ► The Critical Thinking Community – A brief history of the idea of critical thinking ► The Critical Thinking Community – California teacher preparation for instruction in critical thinking ► The History Guide – Aquinas and Dante ► The Critical Thinking Community – Defining critical thinking ► The Rational Polemicist – Fifteen lessons from history ► The Schiller Institute – Erasmus of Rotterdam the educator’s educator ► The Skeptic Tank – A history of the British secular movement ► The Loeb Classical Library – The life of Solon by Plutarch ► Thomas – The biography of Thomas Edison ► Walden University – How to think like Leonardo da Vinci ► Wikipedia – Leonardo da Vinci ► You Tube – Athens the birthplace of Democracy Disclaimer The above notes have been compiled to assist you however actions taken as a result of this document are at the discretion of the reader and not of Harris A. Samaras or Pytheas Limited. All rights reserved. The material in this publication may not be copied stored or transmitted without the prior permission of the publishers. Short extracts may be quoted provided the source is fully acknowledged.

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