I love thinking about human psychology. In particular, I love thinking about things humans do that are non-obvious, but pervasively drive their behaviour.
I can think of two general principles that drive a great deal of human behaviour, yet are non-obvious.
I'm using this post to hold a link to this good breakdown on unconscious bias from Scientific American: https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-to-think-about-implicit-…
I have to start this post with some self-reflection. It's easy to believe that only stupid people get swept up in cults. I heard a few years ago, however, that in fact intelligent people are in fact more likely to join a cult (article, reference).
As a practising Christian, I've therefore spent a lot of time considering whether I'm just another naive cult member.
I used to come across linear algebra problems in math class that seemed impossible to solve. Consider trying to find the value of x, y, and z given this set of two equations:
4x + 3y + z = 8
x + y = 2
If I plug this into Wolfram Alpha, all it can tell me is "y = 4 - x". That doesn't solve for x, y, and z like we want. The problem is intractable.
When I was younger I believed in the Internet. I believed the Internet was a brave place, where knowledge and culture was disseminated freely. I saw it as a place where you could tap into unparalleled knowledge and improve yourself.
I want to explain a theory about how to successfully share the good news. First I'll talk generally about what I've heard from people I know about their experience with the church. Then I'll talk about three of my Christian friends's experiences in their churches growing up. I'll talk about how the good news was shared with me, and then I'll tie it back to my new theory of how to share the good news ethically and successfully.
Before I talk about my life, I should share the Parable of the Sower (explanation here):
I love the feeling of reading a great Bible passage and having that chilling realization that I've still got so much to learn in life. It's called being "convicted". I associate it with positive feelings by now, since I know that if I follow the train of thought, and make some changes in my life, I'll feel so much better later.
I am a dishonest debater.
I remember being around 7 years old and arguing with my brother. Some adult had told us in the past not to run when crossing the road, and I agreed. My brother, a little older and a little more rebellious, still wanted to run across the road. One day, he did, and I confronted him.
"Don't run across the road" I (proudly) stated.
"Why not?" he (reasonably) asked.