When our beliefs, values, attitudes and behaviour are in accord with each other, we feel ‘mentally’ comfortable; i.e. psychological or cognitive consistency exists. When, however, our beliefs etc. are not in accord with each other, we experience a psychological discomfort called cognitive dissonance (Festinger 1957).

Cognitive dissonance arises when, for instance, we know that something we are doing or proposing to do is, in reality, wrong. However, we rarely accept such inconsistencies and are prone (if not programmed), instead, to ‘rationalize’ them (often, quite successfully) (Festinger 1957). For instance,…..


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