Common Sense

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Common Sense

In discussing Fundies with a friend of mine, I brought up how ridiculous their worldview is & threw something in about them lacking common sense, to which he replied there is no such thing as common sense, b/c then it would be common & everyone would have it. Well, that makes "sense" I guess, but now, I find myself in general conversation wanting to use that phrase, but find it hard to break the habit. Thoughts? Do u believe in the concept of "common sense"? If not, what is a more appropriate term?

[EDITED: clarity] 



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Common can mean "shared by

Common can mean "shared by all," in the sense of a "common goal", but it can also mean "frequent", such as a "common use of a word."  When used in "common sense" it is the latter.

Common sense simply means that which is generally known and/or shared by the majority. It does not have to be accepted unanimously.

HC Grindon
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The term is usable, but can

The term is usable, but may require clarification depending on what notion is being associated with it.

Example One (doesn't require much clarification):

Don't put a pizza in the 475 degree preheated oven then leave the house for an errand that takes 6 hours. "Well, that's just common sense."


Example Two (needs clarification):

Without religion, humans would have no morals. "Well, that's just common sense."


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This is why I never got

This is why I never got into linguistics.

"Common sense" to some people is general day to day know-how.  If something breaks, you can fix it.  Or, you know not to put an uncooked, uncracked egg in the microwave for ten minutes... or your poodle.

To other people, it means something opposite "book learnin."  Horse sense.  Those hi-fallutin' city slickers with thar uneevirsitee educations couldn't git theirselves outa the barn iff'n they had to ride a horse.

To still others, it means critical thinking skills -- problem solving ability. 

As with just about every other cultural idiom, real conversation isn't possible until we describe exactly which version of common sense we're talking about.

I think it's... common sense... to know that very few people in the U.S. have good critical thinking skills, for instance.  Then again, it took critical thinking for me to reach that conclusion.


Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin
Books about atheism

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At least 5 times a day I

At least 5 times a day I come across something someone does that pisses me off because it is the opposite of something I was brought up to believe is "just common courtesy". If anything, "common courtesy" as I know it is almost the least common thing these days. People are just becoming too selfish and only thinking of themselves, not giving the slightest thought to others (I had originally written "not giving the slightest care about others", but then it ocurred to me more that it's more a case of the thought not entering their minds rather than them thinking about it but not giving a stuff).

"Common sense" is going down the same path too.


Edit: This number triples when it's wet.  Nothing like almost getting your eyes poked out by umbrellas 4 times while walking a measley 50 meters ... along a COVERED footpath (so umbrellas aren't even needed). 

Organised religion is the ultimate form of blasphemy.
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