Jesus, critical thinking and public relations

A question that I ask that gets attention whenever I teach Critical Thinking at my workplace is what was Jesus Christ’s most likely appearance.

Would he have looked swarthy and middle-eastern like the image on the left, or fair-skinned, with aquiline nose and Caucasian?

Inevitably, there’s be quite a few people (sometimes in the majority) in the class that said Jesus would have looked like the image on the right.

Asked why they thought so, they’d say that the image coincides more closely to the ones they see in church, providing me with a perfect segue into Critical Thinking that starts by asking the Why and How questions?

Why is a middle easterner portrayed as a white boy in most churches? How did this come about? Why do Sio many of us obediently accept this portrayal when logic suggests otherwise?

We then go on to discuss logic, the difference between valid and sound arguments as well as the types of logical fallacies.

What strikes me is the novelty of this topic to many of the younger PR consultants. Weren’t they thought critical thinking as part of the school curriculum?

Then I came across this article at The Conversation and I understood.

Lack of critical thinking skills is unfortunate, fatal in the PR profession, especially when we are now faced with AI and machine learning that can easily perform a lot of the grunt work such as writing press releases, generating Q&As, crafting backgrounders and conducting desktop research.

Whatever value PR professionals can bring to the table in the future has to rely on our critical thinking skills which are the bedrock from which our other offerings – contextual intelligence, creative ideation, even effective implementation — spring from.

This is why at Maverick Indonesia it is one of our mandatory training courses for our consultants and why we at the newly formed PRCA Indonesia Network will be including it in our training syllabus.

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