I don’t know what to think about conspiracy theories. First of all, I am confused about what this term really means. Without thinking too much about it I would have said that a conspiracy is when a group of people A are secretly planning actions to harm another group of people B. This is done in a way so that no one could trace back the involvements of group A into these actions. In this sense, no intelligent person could hardly say that he does not believe in any conspiracies, because there have been a lot of proven conspiracies in the past. Take the Watergate scandal of the Nixon regime to name just one of the most prominent examples. However, “conspiracy theorist” has become a cheap argument against all kind of people who are asking critical questions. Nevertheless, there are certainly some very weird theories out there and off course there is a difference between believing in a conspiracy that has been admitted by the people involved in it like in Watergate and believing in a conspiracy where there is no such clear prove so far.
I have always been a huge sceptic. I believe that the human knowledge is very limited and the world is much too complex to really ever be sure about anything. What we perceive as reality is always just an interpretation of facts analysed from a certain, by no means objective perspective. From the science of the brain, it today seems like our brain in principle is not able to think objectively. We always think in more or less primitive models of the world. In fact, our brain spends most of its energy filtering out information that it considers to be not important. This happens unconsciously. What we ending up perceiving as reality is the reality that is left, after our brain has filtered out most details. How this final reality looks like highly depends on how our brain filters are set up.
â€œKnowingâ€ that, how can we believe in theories that do not even have clear evidence in favor of them? I think to some degree we can. Obviously a lot of things that we perceive as true in are not really true. We think they are true because they appear to be true after our brain has cut most details out of it. This means that we very often, if not always just believe in reality. Now that we believe anyway, why not starting to consciously believing in things which seem to be plausible to us. Up to a the degree that a theory has not been clearly proven to be wrong this seems to be reasonable to me.
Here is a conspiracy theory that I do believe in. I do not have clear evidence for it likes in the Watergate conspiracy. But every information, every filter I have just tells me that there is something true about it. Enjoy this scary clip: