Book VI

Becoming Stronger

How can individuals and communities put all this into practice? These three sequences begin with an autobiographical account of Yudkowsky’s own biggest philosophical blunders, with advice on how he thinks others might do better. The book closes with recommendations for developing evidence-based applied rationality curricula, and for forming groups and institutions to support interested students, educators, researchers, and friends.

Beginnings: An Introduction

Yudkowsky’s Coming of Age

  1. My Childhood Death Spiral
  2. My Best and Worst Mistake
  3. Raised in Technophilia
  4. A Prodigy of Refutation
  5. The Sheer Folly of Callow Youth
  6. That Tiny Note of Discord
  7. Fighting a Rearguard Action Against the Truth
  8. My Naturalistic Awakening
  9. The Level Above Mine
  10. The Magnitude of His Own Folly
  11. Beyond the Reach of God
  12. My Bayesian Enlightenment

Challenging the Difficult

  1. Tsuyoku Naritai! (I Want to Become Stronger)
  2. Tsuyoku vs. the Egalitarian Instinct
  3. Trying to Try
  4. Use the Try Harder, Luke
  5. On Doing the Impossible
  6. Make an Extraordinary Effort
  7. Shut Up and Do the Impossible!
  8. Final Words

The Craft and the Community

  1. Raising the Sanity Waterline
  2. A Sense That More Is Possible
  3. Epistemic Viciousness
  4. Schools Proliferating Without Evidence
  5. Three Levels of Rationality Verification
  6. Why Our Kind Can’t Cooperate
  7. Tolerate Tolerance
  8. Your Price for Joining
  9. Can Humanism Match Religion’s Output?
  10. Church vs. Taskforce
  11. Rationality: Common Interest of Many Causes
  12. Helpless Individuals
  13. Money: The Unit of Caring
  14. Purchase Fuzzies and Utilons Separately
  15. Bystander Apathy
  16. Collective Apathy and the Internet
  17. Incremental Progress and the Valley
  18. Bayesians vs. Barbarians
  19. Beware of Other-Optimizing
  20. Practical Advice Backed by Deep Theories
  21. The Sin of Underconfidence
  22. Go Forth and Create the Art!

Interlude: The Twelve Virtues of Rationality


Beginnings: An Introduction