Last week, Davis Kingsley wrote about reasons one might want to diversify one’s “friendship portfolio.” I commented that if this, being on LessWrong, was aimed at a rationalist audience, it’s my experience many rationalists are introverted or shy enough, some have difficulty joining new groups of friends outside the rationality community as well (though of course there were several comments on Davis’ posts about the benefits of having just a small, consistent group of friends in a single community, worth considering). However, Ruby commented with an even greater reason why some rationalists who might want friends beyond the rationality community nonetheless primarily stick to the rationality community:
I suspect there are challenges for rationalists in joining new communities beyond introversion. I’ve found it jarring to be getting along with some new folk and then people start saying ridiculous things, but worse, having no real interest in determining whether the things they say are actually true. Or even when they try, being terrible at discussion. I don’t need to nitpick everything or correct every “wrong” thing I hear, but it is hard to feel like beliefs aren’t real to people—they’re just things you say. A performance.
There are people outside the rationality community who are fine at the above, but being used to rationalists does introduce some novel challenges. It’d be nice if we ever accumulated communal knowledge on how to bridge such cultural gaps.
So, I thought I would ask.