Friday, February 14, 2014

Cognitive Dissonance & Descent into Madness.

Is important to recognize the problem of cognitive dissonance in the UFO subculture, because in the ufological  and “paranormal industry”, we find intelligent individuals whose life becomes a permanent contradiction between their real convictions and public rhetoric.
Cognitive dissonance is an uncomfortable feeling caused by holding two contradictory ideas simultaneously.
The "ideas" or "cognitions" in question may include attitudes and beliefs, and also the awareness of one's behavior. The theory of cognitive dissonance proposes that people have a motivational drive to reduce dissonance by changing their attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors, or by justifying or rationalizing their attitudes, beliefs, and behaviors.
Cognitive Dissonance usually manifests when a person perceives a logical and perhaps an ethical inconsistency among his or her cognitions.
Let’s imagine that someone is forced to do or say publicly something they privately really don't want to do, dissonance is created between their cognition (I didn't want to do this) and their behavior (I did it).  Forced compliance occurs when an individual performs an action that is inconsistent with his or her beliefs.
Now, this cognitive dissonance will have also a great impact on the social life of the individual affected.
Most probably she or he will became growingly isolated and loose self-esteem.
If the differences between real and proclaimed convictions grow, the situation will eventually become critical.
It is probable that individuals forced to remain in such a cognitive dissonance will “lose their minds.”
Even Insanity is possible for some border line personalities.
I think those cognitive dissonance crises are worse when the inconsistencies and contradictions include ethics.
In addition, cognitive dissonance is particularly critical when the affected individuals live in a familiar context that makes these contradictions more and more obvious.
We should not believe that Cognitive Dissonance is an uncommon phenomenon. On the contrary, the mass of information-disinformation and misinformation makes the C.D. inevitable in many cases.
What should we do about it? We should be aware of the works of our Mind.
A rational approach to the information we receive is a must for those who want to eliminate this uncomfortable feeling or prevent what some researchers call the descent into Madness.”
Obviously things go from bad to worst with professional ufologists. Publishers want books that sell, not books that are true. 
Also, sooner or later, UFO researchers understand that the UFO phenomenon is unsolvable and this make things worse.
The alternative is a secret skepticism, but this is no solution for the cognitive dissonance if the researcher is an ethical individual.  


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