summary essay

In the book “How to think” By Alan Jacobs in the chapter “Beginning to think” States “Why it wouldn’t be a good idea to think for yourself, even if you could”. One chapter 1, “Beginning to Think,” says that thinking is risky. Jacobs says that “There are no guarantees that it will make us happy or even give us satisfaction.” In addition, “Thinking is necessarily, thoroughly, and wonderfully social.Alan Jacobs argues that people have thoughts affected by their surroundings and explains how people can remove some of the problems resulting from a lack of individual critical thought. He focuses on recent American trends.No words are often on our lips than thinking and thought. So profuse and varied, indeed, is our use of these words that it is not easy to define just what we mean by them. The aim of this chapter is to find a single consistent meaning. Assistance may be had by considering some typical ways in which the terms are employed. In the first place thought is used broadly, not to say loosely. Everything that comes to mind, that ″goes through our heads,″ is called a thought. To think of a thing is just to be conscious of it in any way whatsoever. Second, the term is restricted by excluding whatever is directly presented; we think (or think of) only such things as we do not directly see, hear, smell, or taste. Then, third, the meaning is further limited to beliefs that rest upon some kind of evidence or testimony. Of this third type, two kinds ― or, rather, two degrees ― must be discriminated against. In some cases, a belief is accepted with slight or almost no attempt to state the grounds that support it. In other cases, the ground or basis for a belief is deliberately sought and its adequacy to support the belief examined. This process is called reflective thought; it alone is truly educative in value, and it forms, accordingly, the principal subject of this volume.

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