Rationalist taboo is a technique for fighting muddles in discussions. By prohibiting the use of a certain word and all the words synonymous to it, people are forced to elucidate the specific contextual meaning they want to express, thus removing ambiguity otherwise present in a single word.
Mainstream philosophy has a parallel procedure called “unpacking”. Unpacking has the requirement that the contentious or doubtful term be expanded out—not just replaced with a synonym—and only used as a collection of subcomponent concepts.
Disputing Definitions—An example of how the technique helps.
Words as Hidden Inferences—The mere presence of words can influence thinking, sometimes misleading it.
Detached Lever Fallacy—There is a lot of machinery hidden beneath the words, and rationalist’s taboo is one way to make a step towards exposing it.