I recently linked to a fascinating article about research that indicates that, while we’re all prone to cognitive bias, smarter people might actually be more prone to such bias. My Christ and Pop Culture colleague Alan Noble takes it from there.
We cannot analyze ourselves to pure objectivity; we will always be blind to some bias in our thinking. But we are good at observing and pointing out the biases in others. Which means that we need to rely upon each other for correction. Our task is to cultivate communities where criticism, disagreements, and differences exist with love and grace (2 Timothy 4:2). It’s not acceptable to allow one another to continue on in blindness and ignorance. We must sharpen each other, lovingly, but actively (Proverbs 27:17). –For more on why criticism is critical for believers, see Citizenship Confusion: Why I Criticize the Church.
Such a community requires us to be open to correction, with the knowledge that we not only have biases, but that we are likely blind to many of them. Our response to loving criticism or disagreement shouldn’t be shock, hurt, anger, dismissiveness, or defensiveness, but gratitude and prayerful reflection. Let’s petition the Lord for wise correction, knowing that He will provide it and that the prayer will form our hearts to be open to contrary views.