Introduction to Antiprocess
Skeptic debating with paranormalist.
Atheist arguing with theist.
Paper or plastic?
Does anybody ever change their mind?
Some days ... we wonder.
Have you ever been in a discussion with somebody and even though the facts were solidly on your side, they wouldn't change their mind? Who hasn't been in that situation?
In this article, I will be describing a phenomenon I call "antiprocess". Here are several explanations of the concept:
If those explanations haven't made things clear, don't worry about it; this article will explain the underlying concepts and then explain, with examples, how antiprocess operates.
A Note About Interpretation
This article uses diagrams to portray what is going on in the mind. Please do not take these illustrations literally; they are not presented as a map of the brain or an explanation of consciousness. They are not designed for use in a psychology course. The diagrams are simply my attempt to show, in a visual way, something we can't actually see.
Incidentally, some of the words I use (such as "subconscious") have different meanings to different people. Please bear in mind that I am using various words in my own idiosyncratic way so that I do not have to invent new terms. If you think I am using the word "subconscious" incorrectly, I encourage you to substitute a different word, such as "unconscious", or "non-conscious", or whatever seems most appropriate to you.
So Is This a New Theory?
The short answer to that question is: no.
This article describes how and why people cling to comforting beliefs in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary. I am not claiming that I've discovered a new circuit in the brain or anything outlandish like that. I'm hoping that as I explain antiprocess, you'll realize that you've known about it all along, but you never had a name for it. How antiprocess physically operates is a matter for another article.
An Example of Antiprocess
Does this seem at all familiar to you?
After years of debating people without much success, I started to suspect that there was some hidden barrier to understanding, but I didn't know what it was. Why were people being so difficult? And why was I occasionally compelled to be just as irritating?
I believe the concept of antiprocess helps to explain the problem.
In the following sections I will explain some underlying concepts, in the following order...
Once you've read through these section it's quite likely that you'll already have a fairly good idea how antiprocess works. In any case, some examples are given in the subsequent section, followed by a general conclusion.
To proceed to the next section, please click on the NEXT link, below.