Mixing Memory on the Socrates principle

Mixing memory referring in his ever so learned way to what i more simply call the Socrates principle:

[this] reminded me of one of my favorite concepts in cognitive psychology, the illusion of explanatory depth. I’m generally fascinated with anything that shows just how little we know about our individual selves (and man, do we know very little!), and the illusion of explanatory depth is a great example of a lack of self-knowledge. The idea behind the illusion of explanatory depth (and it may be a dangerous one) is simply that there are many cases in which we think we know what’s going on, but we don’t.
on Mixing Memory

The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.


Problem with most of Socrates work is that he is actually Plato’s parrot. Plato, the arch, um.. Platonist believed in a true and perfect world that existed outside the cave and that we might get to know it. It lead him to all sorts of idiotic and dogmatic assertions especially in the social realm. The original and the best Socrates was another man entirely altogether more aware of his own limitations and the complexity of the world. And whilst I don’t doubt that some of our modern knowledge is true in some sense, i think that Socrates’ insight is as important as it ever was; Wisdom and knowledge are not the same thing. And ignorance isn’t necessarily shameful.

About caspar

Caspar is just one monkey among billions. Battering his keyboard without expectations even of peanuts, let alone of aping the Immortal Bard. By day he is an infantologist at Birkbeck Babylab, by night he runs BabyLaughter.net
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1 Response to Mixing Memory on the Socrates principle

  1. Chris says:

    I actually thought of Socrates the first time I read Keil’s papers on the IOED. The participants in his experiments remind me of Socrates’ interlocutors. As Socrates (or the experimenters) continue to force them to explore their knowledge, they find that it’s much shallower, if it exists at all, than they had previously thought.

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