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Friday
Sep202013

causation and prediction

Knowing the cause of something is not the same as being able to predict it. We know that the sea and excessive rainfall cause cliffs to collapse onto the beach. But we can't predict when that will happen. Local people may know when to take especial care- maybe after a period of severe rainfall- but they can't know for sure. Economists are good at knowing the causes- they have identified the sea and the hard rains- but they make fools of themselves when they try and predict a cliff fall. Likewise, saying that they'll never be another cliff fall is another risky strategy. However, maybe someone who walks the beach everyday, knows well the history of cliff falls, has seen a few in their time- maybe they would be good at predicting...something. But even they will probably get the severity of the fall wrong.

To become better at prediction than this you might need to access some inner talents, perhaps the ability to rise above, or sideline, all the outside emotional noise that binds us and seperates us from things.

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