But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you yet with gentleness and reverence; and keep a good conscience so that in the thing in which you are slandered, those who revile your good behavior in Christ will be put to shame.  1 Peter 3: 14-16

In 1829 George Washington Smith published a “pamphlet” in the Philadelphia Gazette entitled, A Defence of the System of Solitary Confinement of Prisoners Adopted by the State of Pennsylvania. In 1833, the work was republished by the Philadelphia Society for the Alleviating the...

Read more

Tuesday, 26 May 2020 03:43

Draft Preface

Written by

Preface

This book began in a law office, late at night, arguing, with each other. These conversations have continued for hundreds upon thousands of hours over the decades. We will spend hours to write a one paragraph letter. We will take weeks to work and re-work a brief. We will make an argument...

Read more

Sunday, 24 May 2020 08:32

Talking Yourself Into Tipping

Written by

So, which will be more effective: a list of reasons you tell yourself, or a list of reasons which someone else tells you? Are you more likely to be persuaded by your own ideas or the ideas of another.

Studies have shown that when confronting a person who engages in addictive behaviors,...

Read more

Thursday, 21 May 2020 06:12

What goes into Ethos?

Written by

A basic element of persuasion is the speaker: what do we think about the speaker? Aristotle called this element of persuasion, ethos (like ethic).

Dr. Flynn of McMasters University argues that Aristotle’s ethos, the way in which we perceive the speaker functions as a heuristic, a means of...

Read more

Wednesday, 20 May 2020 09:34

Anxiety and Thoughts of Death

Written by

Short version: It’s not just the idea, but the anxiety produced by the idea, which gives rise to an increase in thoughts of death. If I tell you your worldview is stupid and you don’t care, you don’t have increased thoughts of death. But if you take my “you’re stupid...

Read more

Distraction as a Means of Relief

A 2005 series of studies published in Journal of Personality and Social Psychology suggests that perhaps people deal with threats by thinking about something else. This is essentially the Squirrel! Theory of stress management. That is perhaps too glib a summary and...

Read more

In a 1983 article published in Crítica, Richard Shusterman examples Wittgenstein’s doctrine indeterminacy in aesthetic value and the work of critical evaluation. At first, this may seem rather remote from the matter of persuasion, but Shusterman rightly notes that the work of a critic...

Read more

Monday, 18 May 2020 13:11

Schopenhauer on Happiness.17 Envy

Written by

The prior post on Schopenhauer and happiness may be found here.

Schopenhauer makes the reasonable observation that envy makes one unhappy:

Envy is natural to man; and still, it is at once a vice and a source of misery.

There are ways in which envy makes one unhappy: to be envious and to be envied....

Read more

How seriously should I take the lockdown orders from my county? How seriously should I consider the consequence of disregarding the orders? Is it a trivial matter? It is there any real sin at stake?

The easiest way out would be merely to say this is no big deal. And perhaps as an ultimate matter,...

Read more

The previous post from this book may be found here. 

Embrace Your Defamations, as affording you precious opportunities to exemplify a patience that shall glorify God; and imitate the exemplary patience of your admirable Savior.

Usually defamations are little more than provocations. Nothing so...

Read more

Thursday, 14 May 2020 08:33

Persuasion and Education

Written by

Karen Murphy and Patricia A. Alexander, “Persuasion as a Dynamic, Multidimensional Process: An Investigation of Intraindividual Differences,” American Educational Research Journal41, no. 2 (Summer 2004): 337-63.

In a study published in 2004, Professors Murphy and Alexander...

Read more

At this point, the poet continues on with the absurdity which lies at the heart of Christianity: How and why could or would God be joined to us?

I have heard atheist mock Christian belief with the ridiculous thought that God – if there were a God – would concern his Godship with a...

Read more

The previous post on Rieff may be found here. 

Therapy as Re-Education

Rieff has a useful understanding of therapy in contrast religion (which in the case of Freud would be Christianity of Judaism) which Rieff refers to as “older moral pedagogies.” (45) The prior moral system...

Read more

 

May my rough voice and blunt tongue but spell

My tale (for tune they can’t) perhaps there may

Some angel catch an end of’t up and tell

In Heaven when he doth return that way

He’ll make thy palace, Lord, all over ring

With it in songs, thy saint and angels sing.

The poet cannot now...

Read more

A meditation on Canticles 4:8

This poem begins with an unmistakable picture of the heavenly Jerusalem come down to earth. In the first stanza, the poet tells us that his soul would become “inflamed” if he were only to see that city filled with saints and angels.

To understand the function...

Read more

A study published in 2006 sought to examine the effectiveness of the Elaboration Likelihood Model (ELM) of persuasion to examine various artificial intelligence responses to online consumers.

The putative consumers were categorized into four groups. First, they were arranged by their “need for...

Read more

Tuesday, 05 May 2020 10:59

Risk and Politics

Written by

Just a thought about risks and costs and politics. It was known that a plague was always going to happen. Such things are unavoidable. Globalization made a rapid dissemination of a disease easy and cheap. But the costs of preparation are great and they have to be paid before the risks exists....

Read more

In chapter 13, Kuyper begins to specifically develop the doctrine of common grace. He notes that while the operation of common grace changed in the post-flood world, the fact of such grace – grace to preserve life rather than redeem from sin – was not new with Noah. He places the advent...

Read more

Distinctions and Similarities Among Positive Emotions

A study published in 2013 (Belinda Campos et al., “What Is Shared, What Is Different? Core Relational Themes and Expressive Displays of Eight Positive Emotions,” Cognition and Emotion 27, no. 1 (2013): 37-52) sought to determine which...

Read more

Thursday, 30 April 2020 08:59

Chained to an idol

Written by

image

For that wicked reptile monster, by his enchantments, enslaves and plagues men even till now; inflicting, as seems to me, such barbarous vengeance on them as those who are said to bind the captives to corpses till they rot together. This wicked tyrant and serpent, accordingly, binding fast with the...

Read more

Wednesday, 29 April 2020 09:35

The Cognitive Learning Approach to Persuasion

Written by

The Cognitive Learning Theory of Persuasion seeks to explain persuasion in terms of ideas.  It is a theory that persuasion takes place as the modification of ideas:

[T]he cognitive response analysis assumes that attitude change can be achieved by modification, through learning, of the...

Read more

Wednesday, 29 April 2020 03:52

How to Manipulate with the truth

Written by

Look at this thread:

It is a simple demonstration of how the angle of a photograph changes the meaning:

image

Multiple examples of such manipulation are given in the comments. Note that there is no “lie” precisely. There is no photoshop. There is no misattribution of the location — only a...

Read more

The previous post on Schopenhauer may be found here.

At this point, Schopenhauer develops his argument concerning solitude. We can see this argument in a few different ways. There are three quotations which help outline his argument:

One:

From what has been said it is obvious that the love of solitude...

Read more

Monday, 27 April 2020 14:32

The plague led to deranged souls

Written by

Moreover, the plague did not abate when the wanton madness of the stage plays took possession of a warlike people, once accustomed only to the sports of the arena. It was the work of wicked spirits crafty enough to know that that pestilence would soon run its course. They seized the occasion, to...

Read more

Monday, 27 April 2020 07:03

Does Forewarning Affect Persuasion?

Written by

A study published in 1991 by psychologists at the University of Florida, Changing Personal Beliefs: Effects of Forewarning, Argument Quality, Prior Bias, and Personal Exploration (Journal of Social and Clinical Psychology, vol. 10, no. 1, 1991, pp. 1-20) found being well-prepared to respond to an...

Read more

Page 1 of 9