• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Reason And Emotion

Extracts from this document...


Is emotion a barrier to reason or is it reasons' companion on the path of knowledge? Reason and emotion are, most of the time, two conflicting forces. Emotion itself sometimes acts as a barrier to reason, and can even manipulate your rational thought processes. Reason as a way of knowing is usually independent of emotion, and tends to work better that way: "The sign of intelligent people is their ability to control their emotions by the application of reason"1. However, it is also apparent that these two forces can complement each other in becoming the justification behind the moral ethical system. Knowledge is the psychological result of facts, information and skills acquired through a variety of different ways of knowing. In order to answer the topic question, one must assess different areas of knowledge to see how these two areas of knowing work in relation to each other. In the case of mathematics, when these two ways of knowing are compared, it is blatant that reasoning serves the most prominent role, and emotion seems to not play any role at all. For example, when one is trying to deduct or prove a statement, one goes about using sequential and logical steps to reach the final consensus. ...read more.


However, upon viewing the English translation of the lyrics, I found that the literal meaning is completely different to upheld subjective meaning. Additionally I found that my initial interpretation made more sense to me and carried much more meaning in comparison to the latter meaning which I developed through reason. Thus, emotion can in fact act as a good indicator for certain areas of knowledge, and this is true in many of the arts; such as the use of provocative visuals in movie-making, using emotive techniques in poems and prose, and using certain tunes in music. When it comes to the area of history, the conflict between reason and emotion becomes much more apparent. It is reasoning that plays the major role in modern history, because we are able to analyse and understand the causes and effects of past events. However, often in history we find that there are many conflicting or differing views regarding certain problems of the past and we come to realise that reasoning determines how you know history, while emotions determine what you know. This means that when events are retold, they become so sullied with emotion that they tend to influence your beliefs on the matter. ...read more.


So it is clear that a combination of reason and emotion as ways of knowing would better justify the ethical area of knowledge, where they would work in synergy instead of conflict. In conclusion, for one to analyse the effectiveness of emotion and reason as a way of knowing, the target area of knowledge must be considered. When we examine reasoning we are forced to accept the fact that it is no more than a means for human endeavour, meaning it will involve trial and error, thus reasoning carries a great possibility encountering falsehoods. On the other hand emotion is simply a state of mind that has great influence on belief, where one is to act in the name of something, believing is all they need, and not necessarily the truth behind it. Therefore, a correct balance of the two ways of knowing is necessary to achieve an optimised position in the path of knowledge. "The first and simplest emotion which we discover in the human mind is: curiosity" - Edmund Burke - Mohamad Montather Naji 1 Marya Mannes - http://thinkexist.com/quotations/emotion/2.html 2 Immanuel Kant - http://www.ccac.ca/en/CCAC_Programs/ETCC/Module02/03.html ?? ?? ?? ?? ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate Theory of Knowledge section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate Theory of Knowledge essays

  1. TOK summer assignment - Art Questions. Experiencing art, artists reputations and "what is ...

    He works with only commercially available materials such as cement, bricks, or timber. Andre's main intention with this piece of work is to illustrate how art can also be 'art' without the many unnecessary details. He shows his form by using only raw materials without the need of painting it

  2. Discuss the roles of language and reason in history.

    19% The actions against the Jews were in no way justified. 77% Indeed, judging by the above results, it is possible that the majority of Germans abhor the Holocaust. The way in which they do so however, is very much linked into their language.

  1. Language relation to Emotion

    and basically all the other fundamental colors that we use today. English, however, have all the fundamental colors and other colors such as aqua, lavender, navy blue, etc. The amount of colors in english seems to be limitless. Therefore, when a chinese person was asked to state the color aqua,

  2. are reason and emotion equally necessary in the justifying a moral decision

    Her maternal instinct, making her fear for her child's safety strengthened her conviction to report the man to the police.

  1. Can Emotion be rational?

    Another example of emotions and subjective reasoning is when our emotions create an emotional prejudice. Bertand Russell (1872-1970) said that ?The degree of one?s emotions varies inversely with one?s knowledge of the facts - the less you know, the hotter you get?.

  2. Discuss the roles of language and reason in history

    As such, we are able to see that both ways of knowing, language and reason, have their own drawbacks and only aids us to gain an understanding of the past but the information that is presented may be falsified and deemed unjustified truth.

  1. Emotions and reason. In this account, we will research what the different schools ...

    In my opinion all theories are understandable. Georg Hegel, a Prussian philosopher stated that there are 3 phases to knowledge: 1) the thesis 2) the antithesis and 3) the synthesis. An example of that would be: 1) The thesis would be that the only way of arriving to the truth is only through reason (Rationalism)

  2. Discuss the Role of Language and Reason in History

    An example of different countries interpreting the same event in dissimilar manner is the Boston Tea Party. The Boston Tea Party still remains an iconic event in American History as many political protests still refer to it to date. Since this incident is what is believed to have triggered the

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work