Death Spirals and the Cult Attractor

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A subsequence of How to Actually Change Your Mind on two of the huger obstacles, the affective death spiral and the cultishness attractor.

Affective death spirals are positive feedback loop caused by the halo effect: Positive characteristics perceptually correlate, so the more nice things we say about X, the more additional nice things we're likely to believe about X.

Cultishness is an empirical attractor in human groups, roughly an affective death spiral, plus peer pressure and outcasting behavior, plus (quite often) defensiveness around something believed to have been perfected.

Some overlap with the Politics is the Mind-Killer subsequence (preferably read that first).

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See also