BCA Month Beauty Fall Reading Hallo nav_sap_plcc_ascpsc Learn more about Amazon Music Unlimited Electronics Gift Guide $69.99 Grocery Handmade Tote Bags hgg17 Save $30 on a Deep Cleaning Appointment curbpremiere curbpremiere curbpremiere  Three new members of the Echo family All-New Fire HD 8, starting at $79.99 All-New Kindle Oasis GNO Shop Now HTL17_gno



on January 9, 2017
I've read a lot of books in my life. Psychology, Poetry, Biology, Business Theory, Self-Help, Nutrition, Economics and so many other subjects are represented in my home library.

The Righteous Mind is hands-down the most important book I've ever consumed. Haidt's understanding of human morality and the science of communication and decision making are weaved together into an approachable, beautiful and potentially life changing symphony.

Enough has been said about why you should read this book so I want to use the rest of this review to tell you exactly what I experienced after finishing this book and how it became "The most important thing I've ever read".

I have struggled for years to communicate with some of my friends and family. So many words were wasted discussing politics, religion and conspiracy theories and all we ever accomplished was self-fulfillment. We never had resolution and we never succeeded in convincing the other side.

I'm a person who considers myself well-read and a champion for pragmatism and logic. You can probably imagine how frustrated I felt when I was consistently unable to win arguments about out-there, government's coming for us-so buy some guns, conspiracy discussions.

Something had to give, so I went searching and ended up on this book. I read it, digested it and decided to try and apply the principles to my communications. I was determined to "align with their elephant" first so I could then shift their mindset to my point of view.

Let's be honest: I was just trying to manipulate other people into seeing things my way.

Well, something incredible and completely unintentional happened: I realized I was wrong, a lot.

One of the foundational pieces discussed in the book is the fact that we, as humans, make decisions in the parts of our brain that aren't subject to critical thinking. If you want to sway someones opinion, Haidt suggests, you must first appeal to their elephant (the emotional part of their brain or "why they feel the way they do").

In the effort to start practicing this: I dedicated myself to asking "why do they believe this way?" first and only made suggestions after I felt that I could articulate what the other person was "feeling" about the subject.

A crazy thing happened: many times I would find myself changing my mind about a subject mid conversation. As it turns out, other people aren't quite as crazy as I thought, they just have different experiences than I do.

After I spent some time training my brain, I started to conversate this way without any conscious effort. I actually seem to have re-wired my brain. The implication of this can't be overstated.

I now see the world in completely different ways and I feel that I can actually empathize for the first time in my life.

I only wish everyone could read this book, understand their natural decision making process and be aware of what's happening to them when they have disagreements or strong opinions on a subject.

You need to read this book. Everyone does.

To the author: Thank you, Jonathan, for giving your life to understanding us a little better and for taking the time to write it all down and pass these lessons onto the rest of us.
77 comments| 240 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on January 18, 2017
This book was stressful for me to read because I really wanted to keep not liking the people I don't agree with. Challenge you to consider that those who do not agree with are not necessarily the devil. I will continue to refer to this in the future in my work as a therapist and minister.
0Comment| 68 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on January 18, 2017
Excellent read. Made me think about a lot of cultural and social factors I would never have considered. I lean toward "liberal" idealogies, but this book made me realize the value of a more diverse perspective for the survival of the human race and how my anti-religious viewpoints had incorporated "sacred" elements of their own. Subsequently, a few of my liberal views which I would not allow to be challenged in my own mind, I am now open to considering broader implications. In summary, this book moved a few of my black and white viewpoints back into the gray and was unexpectedly life changing for me.
0Comment| 71 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on June 10, 2017
Every active citizen in the US should read this book. You will better understand what's happening with your friends and coworkers on the other side of the political divide, and, just as importantly, what's going on with you. A little self-awareness and understanding that everyone is working based on their own strongly-felt reality can help us get through this mess.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on June 25, 2017
Dr Haidt cleverly leads through levels of thought experiments to allow me to understand different value systems. I feel I'm better able to understand the schisms of current politics from this background.

I picked up the book because of the podcast Make Me Smart, and look forward to the discussions planned in that group.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on October 4, 2017
I bought this right after the first Berkeley riots to attempt to understand why tolerance for other peoples views was shifting and right refused to listen to left and visa versa. I saw this guy on a Charlie Rose program and was fascinated by his explanation as to how we got where we are. It is fairly esoteric with lots of studies and research. I am still plowing through it hoping to gain understanding about how we got where we are regarding "free speech" and tolerance for our fellow beings.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on March 13, 2017
A great book that methodically develops the differences between the liberal and conservative dispositions and thinking. A most worthwhile read for one who wants to clarify his/her own moral stance as well as understand those who oppose it--and understand how these positions have developed into political party orthodoxy.
0Comment| 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on May 10, 2017
I found this book helpful. It addressed questions I'd had for years. I found it to be a quick read. It held my attention and I didn't want to put it down. It really made me think and it spurred some interesting conversations with husband and friends.

My husband didn't think he'd like it when I told him the title because he doesn't like political books but he very much enjoyed this one. It doesn't feel political. It goes to the root how we make decisions.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on February 4, 2016
Interesting insights into the different categories people find important (care, fairness, liberty, authority, loyalty, sanctity) and the different value that conservatives, liberals and libertarians place on those categories. The theories are backed up with research data. The insights gained could go a long way in diffusing the current political ill-will.
0Comment| 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on April 13, 2017
A very thoughtful book about how our brains work and why we think and act the way we do. Haidt comes to some challenging conclusions. I learned a lot and am still processing the significant ideas presented.
0Comment| One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse