self-deception

A Quote by George Orwell on self-deception and belief

We are all capable of believing things which we know to be untrue, and then, whene we are finally proved wrong, impudently twisting the facts so as to show that we were right. Intellectually, is possible to carry this process for an indefinite time: the only check on it is that sooner or later a false belief bumps up against solid reality, usually on a battlefield

George Orwell (1903 - 1950)

Contributed by: Ryan

A Quote by George Orwell on self-deception and belief

We are all capable of believing things which we know to be untrue, and then, whene we are finally proved wrong, impudently twisting the facts so as to show that we were right. Intellectually, is possible to carry this process for an indefinite time: the only check on it is that sooner or later a false belief bumps up against solid reality, usually on a battlefield

George Orwell (1903 - 1950)

Contributed by: Ryan

A Quote by Kenneth Smith on philosophy, values, ideals, self-deception, priorities, time, and importance

People compose the schedules they do out of the priorities they have; and someone who says otherwise is deceiving himself about what he really values. The same thing applies to money that applies to time. I make a practice of watching what people do, never what they say. Whatever is important, to anyone sane, he will make a place for it; people live out their values. Values are different in this respect from "ideals," which are typically vain and effete and thus exist mostly for the sake of promoting self-delusions.

Kenneth Smith

Contributed by: Dave

A Quote by Adyashanti on attachment, clinking, enlightment, self-deception, ego, and narcisism

Many spiritual seekers get "stuck" in emptiness, in the absolute, in transcendence. They cling to bliss, or peace, or indifference. When the self-centered motivation for living disappears, many seekers become indifferent. They see the perfection of all existence and find no reason for doing anything, including caring for themselves or others. I call this "taking a false refuge." It is a very subtle egoic trap; it's a fixation in the absolute and all unconscious form of attachment that masquerades as liberation. It can be very difficult to wake someone up from this deceptive fixation because they literally have no motivation to let go of it. Stuck in a form of divine indifference, such people believe they have reached the top of the mountain when actually they are hiding out halfway up its slope.

Enlightenment does not mean one should disappear into the realm of transcendence. To be fixated in the absolute is simply the polar opposite of being fixated in the relative. With the dawning of true enlightenment, there is a tremendous birthing of impersonal Love and wisdom that never fixates in any realm of experience. To awaken to the absolute view is profound and transformative, but to awaken from all fixed points of view is the birth of true nonduality. If emptiness cannot dance, it is not true Emptiness. If moonlight does not flood the empty night sky and reflect in every drop of water, on every blade of grass, then you are only looking at your own empty dream. I say, Wake up! Then, your heart will be flooded with a Love that you cannot contain.

Adyashanti

Contributed by: Ryan

A Quote by Robert Trivers on self-deception, evolution, and deception

If... deceit is fundamental to animal communication, then there must be strong selection to spot deception and this ought, in turn, to select for a degree of self-deception, rendering some facts and motives unconscious so as not to betray — by the subtle signs of self-knowledge — the deception being practiced.' Thus, 'the conventional view that natural selection favors nervous systems which produce ever more accurate images of the world must be a very naive view of mental evolution.

Robert Trivers

Source: The Selfish Gene, Pages: foreward

Contributed by: Ryan

A Quote by Scott Berkun on intelligence, logic, argument, and self-deception

The problem with smart people is that they like to be right and sometimes will defend ideas to the death rather than admit they’re wrong. This is bad. Worse, if they got away with it when they were young (say, because they were smarter than their parents, their friends, and their parent’s friends) they’ve probably built an ego around being right, and will therefore defend their perfect record of invented righteousness to the death. Smart people often fall into the trap of preferring to be right even if it’s based in delusion, or results in them, or their loved ones, becoming miserable. (Somewhere in your town there is a row of graves at the cemetery, called smartypants lane, filled with people who were buried at poorly attended funerals, whose headstones say “Well, at least I was right.”)

Until they come face to face with someone who is tenacious enough to dissect their logic, and resilient enough to endure the thinly veiled intellectual abuse they dish out during debate (e.g. “You don’t really think that do you?” or “Well if you knew the <insert obscure reference here> rule/law/corollary you wouldn’t say such things”), they’re never forced to question their ability to defend bad ideas. Opportunities for this are rare: a new boss, a new co-worker, a new spouse. But if their obsessiveness about being right is strong enough, they’ll reject those people out of hand before they question their own biases and self-manipulations. It can be easier for smart people who have a habit of defending bad ideas to change jobs, spouses, or cities rather than honestly examine what is at the core of their psyche (and often, their misery).

Scott Berkun

Source: Why Smart People Defend Bad Ideas: http://www.scottberkun.com/essays/essay40.htm

Contributed by: Ryan

A Quote by Dan Lusthaus on anxiety, buddhism, ego, anatta, not-self, and self-deception

According to Buddhism, the deepest, most pernicious erroneous view held by sentient beings is the view that a permanent, eternal, immutable, independent self exists.  There is not such self, and deep down we know that.  This makes us anxious, since it entails that no self or identity endures forever.  In order to assuage that anxiety, we attempt to construct a self, to fill the anxious void, to do something enduring.  The projection of cognitive objects for appropriation is consciousness's main tool for this construction.  If I own things (ideas, theories, identities, material objects), then "I am."  If there are permanent objects that I can possess, then I too must be permanent.  If I can be identified with something permanent, the I too must have a permanent identity.  To undermine this desperate and erroneous appropriative grasping, Yogacara texts say: Negate the object , and the self is also negated.

Dan Lusthaus

Source: Buddhist Phenomeonlogy: 538-539

Contributed by: Ryan

A Quote by Henepola Gunaratana on self-deception, defence mechanisms, buddhism, awareness, acceptance, and denial

One popular human strategy for dealing with difficulty is autosuggestion: when something nasty pops up, you convince yourself it is not there, or you convince yourself it is pleasant rather than unpleasant. The Buddha's tactic is quite the reverse. Rather than hide it or disguise it, the Buddha's teaching urges you to examine it to death. Buddhism advises you not to implant feelings that you don't really have or avoid feelings that you do have. If you are miserable you are miserable; that is the reality, that is what is happening, so confront that.  Look it square in the eye without flinching. When you are having a bad time, examine that experience, observe it mindfully, study the phenomenon and learn its mechanics. The way out of a trap is to study the trap itself, learn how it is built. You do this by taking the thing apart piece by piece. The trap can't trap you if it has been taken to pieces. The result is freedom.

Henepola Gunaratana

Source: Mindfulness in Plain English, Updated and Expanded Edition, Pages: 98

Contributed by: Ryan

A Quote by William James on people, thinking, and self-deception

A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.

William James (1842 - 1910)

Contributed by: Zaady

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