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Ethical Debates Are More About Prioritization Than Right and Wrong

Nathanael Garrett Novosel, June 9 2021

Have your ever argued with someone whether it’s okay to walk up to someone at random and kill them?  Probably not.  It’s pretty clear that killing someone for no reason is morally wrong.  But what if someone was killing you, raping you, or stealing from you?  The answer is that the act becomes clearly moral when that person threatens your life, but...

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Facts, Conclusions, Recommendations, and Actions

Nathanael Garrett Novosel, May 19 2021

As I spoke about two weeks ago in my post, Conflating Science and Ethics, people like to find ways to conflate concepts so they can either get others to agree/comply with them or avoid having to put up an actual compelling, convincing argument for their position.  After all, you can argue with an opinion and weigh facts differently, but you can’t a...

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Don't FIND Happiness...CHOOSE Happiness

Nathanael Garrett Novosel, December 30 2020

A lot of people this time of year will be asking, "How do I find happiness?"  That's what people are really looking for: more happiness and fulfillment in their lives.  They're looking outside themselves and trying to find what will make them happy.  In doing so, they're missing a key part of the happiness formula where they can choose to make thei...

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Luck vs. Choice

Nathanael Garrett Novosel, December 9 2020

How much of life is controllable vs. uncontrollable?  50/50?  75/25?  There are a multitude of articles and videos analyzing the degree with which luck factors in to success or not.  Some of my favorites are: The role of luck vs. skill in sports "Coin flipping" (aka luck) vs. skill in stock market picks

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5 Christian Concepts That Are Aligned with the Unified Theory of Meaning

Nathanael Garrett Novosel, December 2 2020

A Unified Theory of Meaning can't truly be unified if it isn't aligned or compatible with most philosophies.  In this blog post, I thought I'd start to show how all philosophies have the eight core concepts of meaning embedded into their ideologies.  Let's begin with Christianity, which has a lot of relevant concepts.  Here are five ideas from the...

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Life’s 8 Major Fallacies

Nathanael Garrett Novosel, October 7 2020

Life can be very difficult to understand or figure out.  Why do bad things happen to good people?  Why does evil exist?  What is the right thing to do in no-win situations?  Questions like these can eat up your time in deep philosophical thought trying to find the best way to either live optimally or understand why the world works the way it does.

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What Do You Do If You Have No Purpose?

Nathanael Garrett Novosel, September 23 2020

"I [feel like I] don't have a purpose."  It's a common statement from people who don't have the direction that they wish they had in life.  It's definitely difficult to turn it around when you are overwhelmed by a sense of aimlessness, but it is possible. First, it's important to note that you always have a purpose; it's just not clear.  I've advis...

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Would You Really Want to Know Your Future?

Nathanael Garrett Novosel, September 9 2020

People often say that they wish that they could see what the future held for them.  If only they knew whether that relationship would work, they would get the job they applied for, or they really wanted to pursue that hobby.  After all, they could avoid a lot of pain, disappointment, and seemingly wasted time if they did the right thing every time...

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Standing Out vs. Fitting In

Nathanael Garrett Novosel, September 2 2020

It's a bizarre seeming paradox in human behavior: as social animals, we want to fit in and be part of the group for safety and support but also want to achieve social status and stand out from the crowd in areas where you excel.  How are those two ideas true at the same time, and how do you balance those desires in your life?

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What the 37% Rule Can Tell You About Life Decisions

Nathanael Garrett Novosel, July 15 2020

If you're not familiar with the 37% Rule, it comes from optimal stopping theory in mathematics where decision makers are trying to determine the optimal point at which to stop looking at more options and select from the best they've seen so far.  In brief, it finds that if you have a large number of options to sift through one at a time and can't r...

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