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How to Communicate More Logically

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Posted 22 October 2012 by Chris FarmerChris Farmer

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How to communicate more logically

Here are 37 tips on how to communicate more logically

  1. If you want to communicate logically, then you should learn the definition of logic.
  2. Logic is the art of correct reasoning; to be applied in thought, language and in action.
  3. Logic is a specific method of thinking, speaking and writing that is distinguished by the following attributes: logic is systematic, objective, coherent (non-contradictory) and non-emotionalised.
  4. Logical communication means that you should strive to ensure that all terms used in your reasoning are terms have one, and only one, specific, distinct and unchanging meaning.
  5. Logical communication requires that you should strive to be Self-consistent (non-contradictory) i.e. that you never say "It is and it isn't" or "The answer is Yes AND No".
  6. Logical communication means that you should strive to ensure that your message is based on facts, not prejudice or gut-feelings.
  7. Logical communication means that you should strive to ensure that you are using systematic method- logic implies a rejection of making "leaps of faith".
  8. Logic relies on accurate use of language; that each term is clearly defined and that its meaning is agreed and does not change during the course of the reasoning process.
  9. Definitions have the function of marking out both the denotation and connotation of the term.
  10. The Connotation of a term or class, is a statement of the set of distinguishing characteristics that are possessed by every member of that class, and by virtue of which they are admitted to be members of that class.
  11. Denotations is sum of the actual members of the class that are described by the connotative attributes.
  12. To define any term take these three steps:
    Name the context
    Name the class
    Name the four distinguishing characteristics that are possessed by every member of the class, and by virtue of which they are allowed as members of that class.13. Learn this example of the above method: Define "Leader":
  13. A leader: in the context of business / a leader is a member of a group or an organisation / who is primarily responsible for the (1) the creation and (2) the communication of a clear goal, and who can (3) act as a role model and who can (4) inspire others to act to achieve the goal.
  14. Once a term is defined, then don't allow its meaning to change; if you change the meaning of a term during the reasoning, then the conclusions will be become invalid.
  15. The error of allowing your meanings to slip and slide is called "equivocation".
  16. Memorise this example of equivocation; "Do you believe in freedom of choice? If yes then shouldn't I be free to choose to drink and drive?"
  17. There are two major categories of logical communication; inductive logic and deductive.
  18. Inductive logical communication is defined as: the presentation of the facts FIRST, and THEN you draw a general conclusion from the facts already stated.
  19. Example of inductive communication: Person 1 took the drug and recovered from the disease; person 2 took the drug and recovered from the disease; so did three hundred others; no person who took the drug failed to show significant improvement in their rate of recovery from the disease. Therefore, we conclude the drug is an effective agent against the disease.
  20. Deductive communications is the opposite of inductive communication; deductive communication is the presentation of the General Principle FIRST, and THEN the application of that principle to a particular case.
  21. Example of deductive communication;
    All mammals have placental young and don't lay eggs; whales have placental young and don't lay eggs. Therefore we conclude that whales are mammals - not fish. In addition: No fish have placental young and fish do lay eggs and therefore no fish are mammals.
  22. All Logical communication requires two things from you: (1) true premises and (2) valid reasoning. The definition of a true premise is "a premise that correspond to the facts".
  23. Obviously true premises are more valuable that false premises. If you say "Sydney is the capital of Australia" then you are "operating under a false premise".
  24. Operating under a false premise is the most dangerous thing you can do: For example: if you think that is a man in a bear costume, when it is, in reality, an enraged grizzly bear, then you are in deep trouble.
  25. The definition of a true statement is "a statement that correspond to the facts".
  26. Before you start talking - Get your facts straight!
  27. "Valid reasoning" means that you are able to put the facts together in the proper way so that you infer the correct conclusions from the facts.
  28. The ability to infer the correct conclusion from a set of true premises is the essence of logic.
  29. "To infer" is defined as: "The mental process of moving from the starting premises and combining them in such a way as to draw out the correct conclusions".
  30. Example of proper, valid inference:
    All life as we know it requires water, the planet mercury has no water, and therefore the planet mercury can bear no life as we know it.
  31. WARNING: It is easy to create invalid conclusions even from true premises: Example: All fish live in water(true) ; All dolphins live in water (true) ; Therefore all dolphins are fish (false).
  32. The process of proper deductive inference has been studied for centuries and is now a well-crafted mental discipline. It is a fully learnable system of thought. It is called "syllogistic reasoning".
  33. It would pay you big dividends to begin a serious study of "syllogistic reasoning".
  34. If you can't communicate logically, then you won't be able to effectively persuade others that what you say has any "intellectual weight".
  35. If you do learn to communicate logically, then you will more easily succeed in persuading others that what you say has intellectual weight and is worth listening to.
  36. Therefore we recommend that you begin a systematic study of logic.
  37. Start your study with learning all the rules for the proper definition of terms. (Google it!)


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