Reasoning Logic and How to Argue Essay

Total Length: 735 words ( 2 double-spaced pages)

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Assignment 1

Abductive reasoning offers the most likely explanation, which may not necessarily be true. Applying rigorous standards of proof helps to show why the simplest or most likely explanation may be the best one at the time, but that more information is needed before the truth is verifiable. Any situation that cannot be immediately explained, from seeming coincidences to the perception of supernatural events, can be attributed to false causes.

One example is the crop circle phenomenon. Crop circles apparently “appear mysteriously overnight in farmers’ fields,” (Radford, 2017). The majority of crop circles were occurring in England, but there have been reports of crop circles elsewhere. Crop circles have been reported for centuries, and have been attributed to aliens. Another presumed cause of the crop circles is the presence of special energy vortexes or patterns known as “ley lines,” which direct wind patterns in a way that creates the crop circles (Irving & Brookesmith, 2009).
These are inadequate explanations for several reasons. One is that actually these are not the simplest explanations whatsoever, and a second reason is that neither of these hypotheses are testable in any way.

As Irving & Brookesmith (2009) point out, “the human soul longs for enchantment,” and therefore longs for some supernatural explanation for what could be explained in simpler, more direct and verifiable terms (p. 1). Most likely, the crop circles were created by human beings who are either interested in creating massive works of temporary pastoral public art, or who are interested in invoking a patterned response among those who long to believe in the supernatural. Of course, unless someone was caught in the act, there is also no way of proving that this is the most likely explanation either.


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Hardy, J., Foster, C., & Zúñiga y Postigo, G. (2015). With good reason: A guide to critical thinking. Retrieved from

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