CBT: Critique

Four fifty. I’m so lazy. I know that’s a moral epithet, but everyone would agree that it’s true. I won’t deny it anymore because the shoe fits. I can’t motivate myself to put my stuff away like I should. Cognitive therapy states that “should” doesn’t exist, and this attitude is common to logical positivism. Moral maxims are not empirically verifiable, hence they can’t be evidence based either. You can see the relationship between positivism and CBT in this light. Nothing moral and nothing metaphysical stands up to logical analysis or the tenets of CBT. And yet morality is embedded in the languages of the world. Even my dog has a conscience that responds to praise and blame, and to the distinctions of good and bad as opposed to shades of gray. Therefore how can a philosophy and a therapy weed out such a fundamental part of experience? The moral instinct is natural and ineradicable. In addition, it may not be a stretch to say that metaphysics likewise belongs in everyday speech and action. How many times have I taken God’s name in vain without thinking? St Anselm premised that God exists in the understanding. And then there are ordinary phenomena such as déjà vu that no one can explain, but which we refer to all the time. All in all, evidence based theories tend to cut human nature down to the jurisdiction of science, when experience teaches that the languages we use incorporate other possibilities as well. First came the mind, next came language to express the needs of human nature. While CBT is useful, still it shouldn’t supersede all previous therapies and belief systems. But that’s just my opinion…


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