More Ideas About Self-Correction.

My last two entries suggested developing the habit of practicing self-correction. Here are a few specific suggestions:

* Keep a diary. Write down experiences that involve topics such as open-mindedness about religion and learning to notice ourselves rejecting an unsettling idea without considering its merits.

* Digital diary. Regularly jot down notes in a computer file. Review the file regularly.

* Find yourself a buddy. Look for an ally who also wants to break out of the self-perpetuation trap. Meet or talk on the phone every week or two to discuss your progress and encourage each other when you slide back into worshiping your own viewpoint.

* Practice a regular discipline of prayer or meditation. Select a theme such as “arguments,” “becoming more charitable,” and “finding the grain of truth in ‘stupid’ opinions.” 

* If you are a Roman Catholic, focus on open-mindedness when you go to confession.

BTW, it occurs to me that the basic concept of confessing our sins is incredibly out of date. Confession is still important, but these days we know that positive reinforcement typically works better than shame and self-recrimination. How about confessing the times we fall short and celebrating times when we take a step forward?

Roger Christan Schriner

To subscribe to Theists & Atheists: Communication & Common Ground, click the “Follow” link on the upper left.