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Old 23rd December 2017, 09:41 PM
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The Irreverent Mr Black The Irreverent Mr Black is offline
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Default Article - Conspiracy theories as maladaptive coping


A review called ‘The Psychology of Conspiracy Theories‘ sets out a theory of why individuals end up believing Elvis is alive, NASA faked the moon landings or 9/11 was an inside job. Karen Douglas and colleagues suggest:

Belief in conspiracy theories appears to be driven by motives that can be characterized as epistemic (understanding one’s environment), existential (being safe and in control of one’s environment), and social (maintaining a positive image of the self and the social group).
In their review they cover evidence showing that factors like uncertainty about the world, lack of control or social exclusion (factors affecting epistemic, existential and social motives respectively) are all associated with increased susceptibility to conspiracy theory beliefs.

But also they show, paradoxically, that exposure to conspiracy theories doesn’t salve these needs. People presented with pro-conspiracy theory information about vaccines or climate change felt a reduced sense of control and increased disillusion with politics and distrust of government. Douglas’ argument is that although individuals might find conspiracy theories attractive because they promise to make sense of the world, they actually increase uncertainty and decrease the chance people will take effective collective action.
And so on, @source.

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Old 24th December 2017, 01:37 AM
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Default Re: Article - Conspiracy theories as maladaptive coping

A great paper.

Within the general category 'conspiracy theories' must be included the plethora of books on God's plan for Israel ushering in the Last Days. The 'Signs of the Times.'

You don't have to be poor to be attracted to this trip. People can have a bookshelf full of these Premillennial eschatological prognostications from that crypto-exegesis of the bible purely from a motive to appear deeply informed, smart, and also separate, set apart from the ignorant masses and the 'lukewarm' who would identify themselves as Christian, but are not truly born again. It is pretty much an ego trip.

I know one, tried to evangelise my daughter at my mum's funeral after the Christians from mum's church turned it into an evangelising farce, co-opted and misappropriated what I said about inherited traits, concerning mum's genuine altruism.

They asserted her charity and empathy was all purely due to Jesus.

I'm sure the attendees saw it for what it was. Fucking ego trip. Self importance. They just have to have the last say. Buddhism would call it 'grasping.'

That was getting a bit off topic.
We can know something only if it is both true and knowable, Thinking Fast and Slow, Daniel Kahneman, 2011.
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