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Showing posts from January, 2016

Traditional Monkeys: Received Wisdom and "The Five Monkeys Experiment"

In which the pilgrim wonders at the strange misreading skeptics give a modern fable, pontificates about the discernment and value of Catholic Tradition and traditions, and sings along with Tevye.

The Pilgrim ran across this contemporary fable today: The Five Monkeys Experiment An experimenter puts 5 monkeys in a large cage. High up at the top of the cage, well beyond the reach of the monkeys, is a bunch of bananas. Underneath the bananas is a ladder.  The monkeys immediately spot the bananas and one begins to climb the ladder. As he does, however, the experimenter sprays him with a stream of cold water. Then, he proceeds to spray each of the other monkeys.  The monkey on the ladder scrambles off. And all 5 sit for a time on the floor, wet, cold, and bewildered. Soon, though, the temptation of the bananas is too great, and another monkey begins to climb the ladder. Again, the experimenter sprays the ambitious monkey with cold water and all the other monkeys as well. When a third monkey …