O’Brien Technique

Written by Ziz

Epistemic status: tested on my own brain, seems to work.

I’m naming it after the character from 1984, it’s a way of disentangling social reality / reality buckets errors in system 1, and possibly of building general immunity to social reality.

Start with something you know is reality, contradicted by a social reality. I’ll use “2+2=4” as a placeholder for the part of reality, and “2+2=5” as a placeholder for the contradicting part of social reality.

Find things you anticipate because 2+2=4, and find things that you anticipate because of “2+2=5”.

Hold or bounce between two mutually negating verbal statements in your head, “2+2=4”, “2+2=5”, in a way that generates tension. Keep thinking up diverging expectations. Trace the “Inconsistency! Fix by walking from each proposition to find entangled things and see which is false!” processes that this spins up along separate planes. You may need to use the whole technique again for entangled things that are buckets-errored.

Even if O’Brien will kill you if he doesn’t read your mind and know you believe 2+2=5, if you prepare for a 5-month voyage by packing 2 months of food and then 2 months more, you are going to have a bad time. Reality is unfair like that. Find the anticipations like this.

Keep doing this until your system 1 understands the quotes, and the words become implicitly labeled, “(just) 2+2=4″, and ” ‘2+2=5’: a false social reality.”. (At this point, the tension should be resolved.)

That way your system 1 can track both reality and social reality at once.

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