Pareidolia | #mentalmodels

Pareidolia: For aeons predators stalked us in undergrowth & shadow. In such times survival favored the paranoid—those who could discern a wolf from the vaguest of outlines. This paranoia preserved our species, but cursed us with pareidolia, so we now see wolves even in the skies. — Gurwinder (@G_S_Bhogal) February 6, 2020

Reactance Theory | #mentalmodels

Reactance Theory: When someone is restricted from expressing a POV, or pressured to adopt a different POV, they usually react by believing their original POV even more. For a detailed example read my piece on my attempt to deradicalize a neo-Nazi: — Gurwinder (@G_S_Bhogal) February 6, 2020

Availability Cascade | #mentalmodels

Availability Cascade: When a new concept enters the arena of ideas, people react to it, thereby amplifying it. The idea thus becomes more popular, causing even more people to amplify it by reacting to it, until everyone feels the need to talk about it. — Gurwinder (@G_S_Bhogal) February 6, 2020

Shifting Baseline Syndrome | #mentalmodels

Shifting Baseline Syndrome: Frog says to Fish, “how’s the water?” Fish replies, “what’s water?” We become blind to what we’re familiar with. And since the world is always changing, and we're always getting used to it, we can even become blind to the slow march of catastrophe. — Gurwinder (@G_S_Bhogal) February 6, 2020

Legibility | #mentalmodels

Legibility: We see a complex natural system, assume that because it *looks* messy that it must be disordered, then impose our own order on it to make it “legible”. But in removing the messiness we remove essential components of the system that we couldn’t grasp, and it fails. — Gurwinder (@G_S_Bhogal) February 6, 2020

Subselves | #mentalmodels

Subselves: We use different mental processes in different situations, so each of us is not a single character but a collection of different characters, who take turns to commandeer the body depending on the situation. There is an office “you”, a lover “you”, an online “you”, etc. — Gurwinder (@G_S_Bhogal) February 6, 2020

Loki’s Wager | #mentalmodels

Loki’s Wager: Fallacy where someone tries to defend a concept from criticism, or dismiss it as a myth, by unduly claiming it cannot be defined. E.g. “God works in mysterious ways” (god of the gaps), “race is biologically meaningless” (Lewontin’s fallacy). — Gurwinder (@G_S_Bhogal) February 6, 2020

Emotive Conjugation | #mentalmodels

Emotive Conjugation: Synonyms can yield positive or negative impressions without changing the basic meaning of a word. Example: someone who is obstinate (neutral term) can be “headstrong” (positive) or “pig-headed” (negative). This is the basis for much bias in journalism. — Gurwinder (@G_S_Bhogal) February 6, 2020