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What is Critical Thinking?

Updated: Jul 23, 2022

We all know this story from Panchatantra.

Four scholars while travelling through a forest came across a heap of bones and realized that the bones belonged to a lion. Three of the scholars decided to bring the dead lion to life, despite the warnings from the fourth one, who they considered as non-scholarly and a coward.

The first scholar placed the bones together to form the skeleton. The second one put flesh and blood to it. The fourth scholar again forbade to perform them the last fatal step, and was dismissed disdainfully. As soon as the lion brought to life by the third scholar, it didn't waste any time in ruthlessly killing and devouring the three scholars. Only the fourth one, who had the presence of mind to have climbed a tall tree nearby, survived.

As we see from the story, though the three scholars were extremely knowledgeable and proficient in their study, lacked the critical thinking abilities to have judge properly the consequences of their actions.


Critical thinking is about making reliable judgements based on well-thought out analysis of vetted information.

The term critical comes from the Greek word kritikos meaning “able to judge or discern”.

Hence, critical thinking involves keen observation, objective evaluation, analysis and synthesis of evidences, skepticism and open-mindedness to come up with creative judgements and solutions.

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