tribal epistemology

Tribal Epistemology.JPG

Epistemology is the study of how we know what we know. Do we base our beliefs on our cultural traditions, on the authority of someone who tells us what is true and what is false, on ‘common sense’, on intuition, or on rational explanation and scientific proof? It would be highly desirable to employ the scientific proof as the basis for our beliefs but there are many instances where we go with common sense, received wisdom, and, increasingly, intuition, which is being preferred to rational explanation in  recent decades.

 The latest in this methodology of knowing is one which merges what is going to be accepted as true with what is good for the tribe.  This is evident in Western politics where truth becomes what the political party says is true, with the result that the adherents of the other party are not just holding an opposing opinion but are fundamentally wrong. No doubt about it. My party says there is no climate change so that must be true and the people who say there is climate change are all liars. This habit of shaping truth to suit the needs of the group is so prevalent that we now have a word for it. Tribal epistemology.

ZG: 5

This should get a higher score because we should all be warned against it, but I think it has fairly low currency.