"Check Your Premises": A Practical Guide for the Active Mind
Jul 02, 2005
It is often said that effective critical thinking requires an "open mind," i.e., a willingness to suspend judgment on issues. However, as Ayn Rand observed, it is not an open mind (or worse yet, a "wide open mind") that is needed for good thinking; rather, it is an active mind. Perhaps the most trenchant advice she gave her readers in this connection was to "check your premises!" In this course you will learn mind-self-management methods that incorporate her advice, methods for directing your thinking to the right issue at each step of your thought processes. These psycho-epistemological procedures can help you make the most of your thinking abilities in constructing your own arguments and intellectual self-defense against the arguments of politicians, professors and others who may try—knowingly or not!—to "put something over on you."