Critical thinking, in the history of modern Western thought, is strongly associated with the Enlightenment, the period when European and American philosophers decided to approach the world with a rational eye, rejecting blind faith and questioning traditional authority.It was this moment in history that gave us modern medicine, democracy, and the early forms of industrial technology.
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After all, rejecting tradition Traditions provide valuable resources for critical thinking, and without them it would be impossible.
Think about this: the English language is a tradition, and without it you wouldn’t be sitting there reading these (hopefully useful) words about critical thinking!
At the same time, the Enlightenment also came with many downsides, particularly the fact that it was so hostile to tradition.
Edmund Wilson Essays - What Is Meant By Critical Thinking
This hostility is understandable given the state of Europe at the time — ripped apart by bloody conflict between different religions, and oppressed by traditional monarchs who rooted their power in that of the Church.So critical thinking absolutely depends on traditions.There’s no question that critical thinking means something Until Einstein, no physicist was ever more influential than Isaac Newton.At the same time, skepticism has to be inwardly focused as well!You have to be equally skeptical of your own beliefs and instincts as you are of others’.Through curiosity and probable skepticism, he not only worked out the basic rules for matter and energy in the universe — he also realized that the force causing objects to fall was the same as the force causing celestial objects to orbit around each other (thus discovering the modern theory of gravity).He was also known for having a big ego and being a little arrogant with those he considered beneath his intellect — but even Newton had enough humility to recognize that he wasn’t doing it alone.Sooner or later you have to come up with your own ideas, your own solutions, and your own visions.That requires a creative and independent mind, but one that is also capable of listening and learning.Although video games are sometimes simply a passive way to enjoy yourself, they sometimes rely on critical thinking skills.This is particularly true of puzzle games and role playing games (RPGs) that present your character with puzzles at critical moments.