• 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. Free essay


    The idea of 'Kantianism and Utilitarianism' which talk about the consequences and the decisions made also fall into this category. In Kantianism, we first think about the correct decision and then the result or say the consequence, while on the other hand, Utilitarianism deals with thinking about the consequence first and then making the correct decision.

  2. Evaluate the relative importance of emotion and reason in your response to art.`

    feel happy and peaceful ; Virgin Mary coat was blue in all pictures : Knowing the fact that in 18th century the colour of blue was very difficult to be obtained, so they used to paint it in blue to create the uniqueness and peculiarity of Virgin

  1. Are reason and emotion equally necessary in justifying moral decisions?

    to better ourselves, to do more to improve our current or past situations.5 Both are needed to balance each other. But Reason cannot be applied without the emotional "feel" of what is true or false, what is right or wrong, what seems better or worse or closer to the ideal solution.

  2. Are reason and emotion equally necessary in justifying moral decisions?

    Most of these scenarios involve a calculated determinedness (reason) and the passion to execute it (emotion). In the most obvious question of whether the killing in war is necessary or not, certain things need to be examined in context to emotion and reason.

  1. Free essay

    Are reason and emotion equally necessary in justifying moral decisions?

    The idea is that only one aspect can prevail, usually the belief is that emotion should be suppressed and reason should be focused on. Problems are solved by reason and emotions are seen as the barrier that obstructs the path.4 Emotion tends to be seen as a problem for knowledge

  2. Are Reason and Emotion Equally Necessary in Justifying Moral Decisions?

    that ethical conduct is separate from religious beliefs and can be explained in rational terms. Reason compels us to observe moral laws and be aware of our ethical duties to others and ourselves. According to Kant, an action is ethically right if it is done with a rational purpose in a good way.

  1. Reason and emotion

    In year 8 I learned that the body is composed of cells which are constantly reproducing. So when in year 11 I learned about mitosis, which is the process of cell replication, I was able to add that knowledge to what I already knew, giving it more value and understanding it better.

  2. Discuss the Role of Language and Reason in History

    history of the world is but the biography of great men" (Carlyle on dictionary-quotes).An example where this quote is portrayed clearly is during the Battle of Lexington and Concord. During this time Paul Revere and William Dawes were both messengers in the American Revolution and did the same work.

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