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InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
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Rationality, Objectivity and Logic
    #4783117 - 10/10/05 05:17 PM (16 years, 2 months ago)

Here is a presentation of three good olde fashioned fundamentals of textbook philosophy, for the sake of discussion and examination of the following principles of philosophy.

If you feel that any of the following philisophical principles conflict with any major concepts and/or beliefs that you hold, this may be your opportunity to testify against the fundamental theorem henceforth.
If you wish to do so, please make your postulations explicit, accurate and clear.


Rationality

"The virtue of Rationality means the recognition and acceptance of reason as one's only source of knowledge, one's only judge of values and one's only guide to action. ... It means a commitment to the principle that all of one's convictions, values, goals, desires and actions must be based on, derived from, chosen and validated by a process of thought."
Ayn Rand


Rationality is the habit of acting by reason, which means in accordance with the facts of reality. The only alternative is acting by whim, which because reality is absolute, will result in undesired consequences. This is because an action based on a belief in a particular cause-effect relationship will not occur if that relationship is invalid.

A second consequence to acting irrationally is that it undermines one's ability to act rationally in the future. By choosing to act irrationally, you are confessing your lack of trust in your own mind. The more often you do this, the more you will believe what you are practicing. You will accept that the mind is impotent, and that you cannot make the right decisions. This undercuts your ability to live, since reason is man's means of survival.

Rationality is in your self interest because the only way to achieve desired outcomes is to act according to reality. To understand reality, one must use reason consistently. Any deviation can have long term problems, since one's knowledge is often derived from one's previous knowledge. To accept a false belief once can have the effect of polluting all further knowledge, until the mistakes are cleared away and the new knowledge reevaluated.

Rationality does not mean being a perfectionist in one's thoughts and ideas. It does not require you to spend enormous amounts of time evaluating every idea. It does not require you to learn everything there is to know, to become an expert at every topic. Rationality means acting according to reason. It means accepting only that which you have reason to believe. It means using logic to weed out any contradictions. It means when you have to accept the judgment of another, you use your own mind to determine whether you should. Is the person educated in that field? Is it knowledge that someone is capable of having? From what you know about the rest of his ideas, is he someone you believe will be correct? Rationality is foremost a method of survival. It is a virtue only to the extent that it encourages one's survival.


Objectivity

Objectivity is the recognition of reality as the ultimate standard of evaluation. It is the acceptance that all knowledge is knowledge about reality. It is the only means of determining the truth. The concepts of true and false are only meaningful in reference to reality.

Objectivity is the act of referencing reality in determining the truth. It is the act of founding one's knowledge on reality, and making one's thoughts and ideas conform to it. To be objective, reality must be an explicit standard to be compared to. Objectivity is the process of actively comparing one's thoughts to reality, and this can only be accomplished if the purpose of the comparison is identified. The purpose, of course, is to set the standard for validity.

It is a common mistake to believe that one cannot be objective if one has a personal stake involved in something. The implication is that the emotion or motivation necessarily prevents one to be accurate. Since objectivity is the act of conforming one's thoughts to reality, it should be clear that this is possible regardless of any influences.

Logic

Logic is the art of conforming one's thoughts to the Law of Identity. In one respect, thoughts have to conform to the Law of Identity, as does everything else. This has to do with the nature of thoughts. Ideas have a different nature than memories, which are different from emotions. In this respect, all thoughts conform to the Law of Identity.

In a different respect, though, it requires focused action to conform to the Law of Identity. Ideas have content. This content is generated by the thinker from perceptual data. However, it may be generated incorrectly. Logic requires the content to be clear and identifiable. It requires that no contradiction exist within the idea.

Logic is used in integrating ideas as well. Again, it is the process of conforming to the Law of Identity. What this means in practice is combining information clearly, and without contradiction. It must be combined into a specific, identifiable package, that doesn't contradict itself.

Logic is the art of non-contradictory identification. It is the mental tool that sets the standard for proper thought. It is the foundation of knowledge. It is the means of understanding and clarity. Without logic, we could not distinguish between the true and the false. We could not throw out bad ideas because we could not judge them as bad. Without logic, our minds would be cluttered with so many absurdities and falsehoods that if there was some truth, it would be lost in the garbage of contradictions, fuzzy thoughts, and non-integrated mental images.

From: http://importanceofphilosophy.com/

For reference, here are the articles on:
Aristotle's Law of Identity
Standard of Evaluation





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OfflineRoseM
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #4783128 - 10/10/05 05:19 PM (16 years, 2 months ago)

That would make a nice forum description. :thumbup:


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OfflineDeviate
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #4783135 - 10/10/05 05:21 PM (16 years, 2 months ago)

"The virtue of Rationality means the recognition and acceptance of reason as one's only source of knowledge, one's only judge of values and one's only guide to action. ...

what about intuiton? there have been many instances in which i have acted on intuition and acheived desired results and many instances where i have resisted my intuition in favor of the course of action which seemed most plausable to the thought processes of my intellect and acheived undesirable results.

"the only real valuable thing is intuition" - einstein. was einstein irrational?


Edited by Deviate (10/10/05 05:22 PM)


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InvisibleSclorch
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: Deviate]
    #4783505 - 10/10/05 06:46 PM (16 years, 2 months ago)

Rationality requires a core system of beliefs/definitions/standards.

The core is the problem.


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OfflinePhred
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: Deviate]
    #4783545 - 10/10/05 06:55 PM (16 years, 2 months ago)

Many people hold that intuition is nothing more than the application of the above three principles, done subconsciously. Although you may not have been aware you were going through the process of evaluation in a logical manner, in fact you were. Or you had at some time in the past gone through a process where the parameters were so similar that your subconscious chose to short circuit the process and just spit out the "intuitive" result reflexively, much as you no longer need to consciously direct your body to pull your hand away from a hot stove -- it happens reflexively.

The problem with acting on unsupported intuition over rational decision-making is that you cannot know your reflexive subconscious process (if that is indeed what is the basis for intuition at all -- something that is still far from proven) has in fact correctly identified and differentiated all the relevant parameters in this particular situation. Your intuition may have seized upon what seems like a familiar pattern and responded automatically while failing to adjust for a very small but very important difference.

I have played backgammon for decades now and I observe this phenomenon over and over again when playing weaker players. They watch better players play in order to learn, and they play better players themselves in order to improve. The beginner may eventually notice that in a certain fairly standard opening sequence, the stronger player plays a given roll (say, a 4-2) the same way over and over. Yet when the beginner plays the same 4-2 the same way, he may soon find himself in trouble and eventually lose the game. What he has failed to notice is that the strong player plays that 4-2 the same way so often because perhaps 95% of the time his opponent has just two men back so early in the game. Perhaps the beginner has never even had an opportunity to see how the strong player would play the 4-2 if his opponent had three men back. Due to the random nature of the dice in backgammon, it is possible to play regularly for many months or even longer without seeing that specific exception to the standard 4-2 move arise. By the time it does, the beginner's instinctive (or intuitive, if you prefer) reaction on how to play the 4-2 is so deeply ingrained he makes the move effortlessly, picks up his dice, then sees his opponent steamroller him.

The reason the weaker player got himself into trouble by playing the 4-2 the way he did is that he thought the situation was the same, but this time things are slightly different. He just didn't notice the difference. Or if he did notice, he didn't consciously grasp the significance of it.

That subtle but crucial difference has led the beginner's backgammon "intuition" astray. And life often presents us with situations where the difference between what we have previously dealt with and the situation we face today is considerably more subtle than the difference between two backgammon stones and three.




Phred


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OfflinePhred
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: Sclorch]
    #4783551 - 10/10/05 06:58 PM (16 years, 2 months ago)

Quote:

The core is the problem.




Do you mean to say the determination of which core beliefs/definitions/standards (I prefer the term "axioms" myself) one should hold can be problematical, or that the very fact that there must be a core (regardless of its composition) presents a problem?

Please clarify.





Phred


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InvisibleSclorch
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: Phred]
    #4783689 - 10/10/05 07:21 PM (16 years, 2 months ago)

Quote:

Phred said:
Quote:

The core is the problem.




Do you mean to say the determination of which core beliefs/definitions/standards (I prefer the term "axioms" myself) one should hold can be problematical, or that the very fact that there must be a core (regardless of its composition) presents a problem?




Both present problems. And it's hard to say which is more responsible for the problems - the definition of the core or the core itself.

It's obvious that a faulty core of beliefs/definitions/standards can logically lead to a horrible outcome (Think Hitler - he was extremely rational with fuxored beliefs). But why is the core needed at all? All the core provides is the promise of stability (ala certainty)... and maybe that's not always a good thing.


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InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: Deviate]
    #4783974 - 10/10/05 08:10 PM (16 years, 2 months ago)

But why is the core needed at all?

Sclorch wrote [Emphasis mine]: Rationality requires a core system of beliefs/definitions/standards.

Can rationality exist and operate in the absence of a core?
And moreover, is it possible for one to function without a core/center?
Or is it entirely inevitable?

I've known for people to have a weak core, particularly in adolescents who've become stunted in their growth, maturity and overall personal[ity] development. It seems the result of this tends to be a neurotic, scrambled person with hardly any real "aim". By that same token, neurosis can also be caused by failure of personal growth.

Either way, these disorders with underdeveloped cores obviously aren't very conducive to the above three principles of philosophy. But perhaps there is a different situation whereby a non-existant core is non-pathological... Or perhaps not.




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InvisibleSclorch
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #4784052 - 10/10/05 08:27 PM (16 years, 2 months ago)

Not so much a non-existant core as a less rigid one. An amorphous blob of uncertain limits instead of rules carved in stone.

I've often argued that the wise man did not build his house upon the rock. Rather, he kept moving his tent across the ever-shifting sands.


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InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: Sclorch]
    #4786602 - 10/11/05 11:03 AM (16 years, 1 month ago)

That's very Taoistic. In fact you reminded me of an exact chapter in the Tao Te Ching, where something very similar was written to what you said, about the proverbial Sage.
I'd share it, but unfortunately I purchased the uber-miniature version of the book, and can't seem to find it in my miniature-library. :crankey:





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Offlinecrunchytoast
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #4788787 - 10/11/05 09:39 PM (16 years, 1 month ago)

Quote:

That would make a nice forum description.



personally i'm happy the admins avoided any metaphysical statements when describing this forum.

Quote:

"The virtue of Rationality means the recognition and acceptance of reason as one's only source of knowledge, one's only judge of values and one's only guide to action. ... It means a commitment to the principle that all of one's convictions, values, goals, desires and actions must be based on, derived from, chosen and validated by a process of thought."
Ayn Rand




what about the external world impinging on the senses?

Quote:

Rationality means acting according to reason. It means accepting only that which you have reason to believe. It means using logic to weed out any contradictions.




this begs the question, how do you know for a fact that reality isn't essentially contradictory?

Quote:

It means when you have to accept the judgment of another, you use your own mind to determine whether you should. Is the person educated in that field? Is it knowledge that someone is capable of having? From what you know about the rest of his ideas, is he someone you believe will be correct?

none of these inferences which necessarily make your conclusions right or wrong.

Quote:

Rationality is foremost a method of survival. It is a virtue only to the extent that it encourages one's survival.




what makes survival intrinsically good? this sounds more like a subjective value statement to me, than an intrinsic quality of the universe.

Quote:

Objectivity is the recognition of reality as the ultimate standard of evaluation.




reality does not evaluate, it just is. people evaluate.

Quote:

It is the acceptance that all knowledge is knowledge about reality. It is the only means of determining the truth. The concepts of true and false are only meaningful in reference to reality.




yet preferring truth to falsehood is a value judgment- and while truth may arguably be more objective than falsehood, the preference of one over the other is hardly objective at all.

Quote:

Objectivity is the act of referencing reality in determining the truth. It is the act of founding one's knowledge on reality, and making one's thoughts and ideas conform to it.




how could one wilfully do this if rationality were intrinsic to the nature of universe? IOW external referencing wouldn't be a choice, it would simply happen. that fact that rationality can be chosen shows that there is more to the universe than rationality itself.

Quote:

It is a common mistake to believe that one cannot be objective if one has a personal stake involved in something. The implication is that the emotion or motivation necessarily prevents one to be accurate. Since objectivity is the act of conforming one's thoughts to reality, it should be clear that this is possible regardless of any influences.




then why do people lie when they have something at stake? why do people lie to themselves when their vanity is at stake? how does a person ever know for sure than any given statement is not a lie (even statements they themselves generate)- how can anyone know anything at all with any certainty whatsoever?

Quote:

Logic is the art of conforming one's thoughts to the Law of Identity. In one respect, thoughts have to conform to the Law of Identity, as does everything else. This has to do with the nature of thoughts.




me, i have contradictory thoughts all the time, such as "i am sick of eating rice every day this week/damn this rice is good." one can find many paradoxes in poetry for example. also, what about the particles from quantum physics that can be in more than one location at once?

Quote:

Logic is used in integrating ideas as well.




does a painter necessarily use logic when capturing an emotion on canvass?

Quote:

It is the means of understanding and clarity. Without logic, we could not distinguish between the true and the false.




what about using empirical evidence to distinguish true and false?

anyway, how can anything be known for certain?

Quote:

We could not throw out bad ideas because we could not judge them as bad. Without logic, our minds would be cluttered with so many absurdities and falsehoods that if there was some truth, it would be lost in the garbage of contradictions, fuzzy thoughts, and non-integrated mental images.




which may indeed be how the mind operates. i think emotion is the sole determinant of human behavior, not reason. rationality itself is but one emotive expression.


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: crunchytoast]
    #4788838 - 10/11/05 09:47 PM (16 years, 1 month ago)

does a painter necessarily use logic when capturing an emotion on canvass?


does a computer use logic when it crashes and spews out a bunch of garbled madness?

There are certain patterns in all forms of art, and the processes that make the brain what it is act logically. A moutain range may look beautiful and stir up all kinds of illogical emotions, but it's your brain, shaped by the forces of physics, just as the mountain range was, that makes that judgement. Emotions don't seem logical because they're a system that slowly fell into place over time, not something that was designed with a specific goal in mind.


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OfflinePhluck
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: crunchytoast]
    #4788849 - 10/11/05 09:49 PM (16 years, 1 month ago)

what makes survival intrinsically good?

Nothing. However, it shaped what we are. Survival means a new trait can live on and be reproduced. Survival means diversity can happen.


--------------------
"I have no valid complaint against hustlers. No rational bitch. But the act of selling is repulsive to me. I harbor a secret urge to whack a salesman in the face, crack his teeth and put red bumps around his eyes." -Hunter S Thompson
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Offlinecrunchytoast
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: Phluck]
    #4788969 - 10/11/05 10:08 PM (16 years, 1 month ago)

Quote:

the processes that make the brain what it is act logically.




maybe the processes that make the brain simply are what they are, and our understanding of these processes take logical forms. any "beauty", "order", or "rationality" that we attribute to the universe for being what it is, is always something our minds make up after the fact. "2+2=4" well that's rational. but we'd be saying the same thing if "2+2=5".

furthermore, our understanding of reality is always changing. take the brain. our understanding of the brain has mutated many times over the centuries and will continue to do so. yet the brain always acts according to "rational principles"; today we say it's the laws of physics. yet the laws of physics are not the universe itself, but merely today's understanding of the universe. what's rational at one moment is irrational the next. logic is not an intrinsic quality of the universe but a projection of the mind.

Quote:

There are certain patterns in all forms of art



really? what patterns?

Quote:

what makes survival intrinsically good?

Nothing. However, it shaped what we are. Survival means a new trait can live on and be reproduced. Survival means diversity can happen.




why does what shaped us have to necessarily be good? many people are shaped by traumatic experiences for example. what's good about new traits living on and being reproduced? the greatest "evils" in history were perpetuated by tyrants whose ancestors survived the centuries. as for diversity, what's intrinsically good about that?

don't get me wrong, i think it's great for you to hold these values. but i don't believe there's anything objective about them.


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InvisibleSkorpivoMusterion
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: crunchytoast]
    #4791875 - 10/12/05 11:06 AM (16 years, 1 month ago)

"The virtue of Rationality means the recognition and acceptance of reason as one's only source of knowledge, one's only judge of values and one's only guide to action. ... It means a commitment to the principle that all of one's convictions, values, goals, desires and actions must be based on, derived from, chosen and validated by a process of thought."
Ayn Rand

what about the external world impinging on the senses?


Not sure what you?re trying to say here. Please elaborate.


Rationality means acting according to reason. It means accepting only that which you have reason to believe. It means using logic to weed out any contradictions.

this begs the question, how do you know for a fact that reality isn't essentially contradictory?


Simply because Reality exists in a certain way.
A contradiction arises when two ideas each make the other impossible. Contradictions don't exist in reality because reality simply is as it is and does not contradict itself. Only our evaluations of reality can contradict each other.


Rationality is foremost a method of survival. It is a virtue only to the extent that it encourages one's survival.

what makes survival intrinsically good?


Sorry, perhaps I missed something here. Could you please point out for me, where it says that?


this sounds more like a subjective value statement to me, than an intrinsic quality of the universe.


Objectively, survival is neither good nor bad ? it just is as it is.  Survival is an integral mechanism of the Universe. Anyway this isn?t relevant, so I?ll digress.


Objectivity is the recognition of reality as the ultimate standard of evaluation.

reality does not evaluate, it just is. people evaluate.


Does it say that reality evaluates? It says that it is a standard of evaluation. If I said a Ruler is a standard of Metric Evaluation, that means that it can be used to evaluate and measure certain metrics ? not that the ruler itself performs these actions.


It is the acceptance that all knowledge is knowledge about reality. It is the only means of determining the truth. The concepts of true and false are only meaningful in reference to reality.

yet preferring truth to falsehood is a value judgment- and while truth may arguably be more objective than falsehood, the preference of one over the other is hardly objective at all.


Preferences and judgments are indeed subjective, and while there is always some element of subjectivity in our preferences and judgments, more objective metrics can be used. Agreed. Not sure if whether you are simply conversing or trying to refute the premise of the quoted sentences, because what you mentioned doesn?t conflict with the sentence in consideration.


Objectivity is the act of referencing reality in determining the truth. It is the act of founding one's knowledge on reality, and making one's thoughts and ideas conform to it.


It is a common mistake to believe that one cannot be objective if one has a personal stake involved in something. The implication is that the emotion or motivation necessarily prevents one to be accurate. Since objectivity is the act of conforming one's thoughts to reality, it should be clear that this is possible regardless of any influences.

then why do people lie when they have something at stake? why do people lie to themselves when their vanity is at stake?


The paragraph has not made any claims whatsoever to any sort of impossibility. Rather, it points out that which is possible, contrary to common thought.  Simple as that.


how does a person ever know for sure than any given statement is not a lie (even statements they themselves generate)- how can anyone know anything at all with any certainty whatsoever?


Are you implying that it isn?t possible for objectivity to be exercised with what information is available at-hand?


Logic is the art of conforming one's thoughts to the Law of Identity. In one respect, thoughts have to conform to the Law of Identity, as does everything else. This has to do with the nature of thoughts.

me, i have contradictory thoughts all the time, such as "i am sick of eating rice every day this week/damn this rice is good." one can find many paradoxes in poetry for example. also, what about the particles from quantum physics that can be in more than one location at once?


See second response.


Logic is used in integrating ideas as well.

does a painter necessarily use logic when capturing an emotion on canvass?


They certainly can.


It is the means of understanding and clarity. Without logic, we could not distinguish between the true and the false.

what about using empirical evidence to distinguish true and false?


From dictionary.com:
em?pir?i?cal  adj.
1. a)Relying on or derived from observation or experiment: empirical results that supported the hypothesis.
b)Verifiable or provable by means of observation or experiment: empirical laws.
          2. Guided by practical experience and not theory, especially in medicine.

To distinguish from true and false, Logic can certainly be used.


how can anything be known for certain?

Well, take the fact that water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit.

How is this known for certain? Observation.


We could not throw out bad ideas because we could not judge them as bad. Without logic, our minds would be cluttered with so many absurdities and falsehoods that if there was some truth, it would be lost in the garbage of contradictions, fuzzy thoughts, and non-integrated mental images.

which may indeed be how the mind operates.


:toomuchacid:


i think emotion is the sole determinant of human behavior, not reason.


The sole determinant?  Oh please. Stop with the black and white thinking and use some rationality. It is as important to understand with the feelings as well as with the intellect. Both must develop together and equally in order to maintain balance. A person dominated by his intellect is a repetitious tape-recorder. An individual commanded by his emotions is an unpredictably erupting volcano.


rationality itself is but one emotive expression.


Not quite.




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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #4791992 - 10/12/05 11:53 AM (16 years, 1 month ago)

You saved me quite a bit of typing, Skorp. Well done.

I will disagree with your concession "It is as important to understand with the feelings as well as with the intellect. Both must develop together and equally in order to maintain balance. A person dominated by his intellect is a repetitious tape-recorder. An individual commanded by his emotions is an unpredictably erupting volcano," however. It is important to recognize the fact that emotions are not tools of cognition. Emotions provide no information whatsoever about the situation you are observing other than the fact that observing (or thinking about) that situation makes you smile or cry or frown or whatever.

There are times where a decision can be made through reliance on emotions with no negative consequences -- should I buy pink curtains or green curtains? I think I'll go with green because green makes me feel peaceful and pink makes me feel ridiculous.

But in any situation where there is a serious decision that needs to be made -- should I buy stock in IBM or use that same money to buy Bluebunny Power Tools Corporation stock, it would be an error to buy Bluebunny solely on the basis that bunnies make you smile and blue is your favorite color. The way you feel about bunnies and the color blue is entirely irrelevant to the determination of which company is more likely to provide you a profit.



Phred


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Offlinecrunchytoast
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: SkorpivoMusterion]
    #4792017 - 10/12/05 12:00 PM (16 years, 1 month ago)

Quote:

"the recognition and acceptance of reason as one's only source of knowledge"
what about the external world impinging on the senses?
Not sure what you?re trying to say here. Please elaborate.




the quote states that reason is the only source of knowledge; if this is true, then the external world impinging on the senses is not a source of knowledge.  this is counter-intuitive for me; how about you?

Rationality means acting according to reason. It means accepting only that which you have reason to believe. It means using logic to weed out any contradictions.

this begs the question, how do you know for a fact that reality isn't essentially contradictory?

Quote:

Simply because Reality exists in a certain way.
A contradiction arises when two ideas each make the other impossible. Contradictions don't exist in reality because reality simply is as it is and does not contradict itself. Only our evaluations of reality can contradict each other.




again, how do you know a contradiction is necessarily impossible?  and how do you know reality is not contradictory?  it seems like you're just stating that reality is this certain way; that doesn't make it that way.  i have given examples of stable, reality-based, contradicting thoughts: "me, i have contradictory thoughts all the time, such as "i am sick of eating rice every day this week/damn this rice is good." one can find many paradoxes in poetry for example. also, what about the particles from quantum physics that can be in more than one location at once?"

Quote:

Objectively, survival is neither good nor bad ? it just is as it is.



:thumbup: we're on the same page here.
i want to go a little bit farther and state that rationality is a value system, as it prefers some statements over others- non-contradictory vs. contradictory statements for example- yet one kind of statement is not truly better than the other one.

Quote:

Objectivity is the recognition of reality as the ultimate standard of evaluation.
reality does not evaluate, it just is. people evaluate.
Does it say that reality evaluates? It says that it is a standard of evaluation. If I said a Ruler is a standard of Metric Evaluation, that means that it can be used to evaluate and measure certain metrics ? not that the ruler itself performs these actions.




individual people evaluate the world based on the standards of their preferences.  a ruler is not an evaluating tool, it is a measuring device.  IMO e-valu-ation implies value, which is subjective.

Quote:

It is the acceptance that all knowledge is knowledge about reality. It is the only means of determining the truth. The concepts of true and false are only meaningful in reference to reality.
yet preferring truth to falsehood is a value judgment- and while truth may arguably be more objective than falsehood, the preference of one over the other is hardly objective at all.
Preferences and judgments are indeed subjective, and while there is always some element of subjectivity in our preferences and judgments, more objective metrics can be used. Agreed. Not sure if whether you are simply conversing or trying to refute the premise of the quoted sentences, because what you mentioned doesn?t conflict with the sentence in consideration.




my argument is that rationalism can not be an intrinsic quality of the universe, since it's a system of evaluating different statements based on subjective criteria (such as truth is better than falsehood).

Quote:

Objectivity is the act of referencing reality in determining the truth. It is the act of founding one's knowledge on reality, and making one's thoughts and ideas conform to it.

It is a common mistake to believe that one cannot be objective if one has a personal stake involved in something. The implication is that the emotion or motivation necessarily prevents one to be accurate. Since objectivity is the act of conforming one's thoughts to reality, it should be clear that this is possible regardless of any influences.




how can a person know for certain that they know something?  everything is conjecture.

Quote:

how does a person ever know for sure than any given statement is not a lie (even statements they themselves generate)- how can anyone know anything at all with any certainty whatsoever?
Are you implying that it isn?t possible for objectivity to be exercised with what information is available at-hand?




it's possible, but there's no way of knowing if you're right or wrong at the end of it.

Quote:

Logic is used in integrating ideas as well.
does a painter necessarily use logic when capturing an emotion on canvass?
They certainly can.



but they don't necessarily do so.

Quote:


em?pir?i?cal adj.
1. a)Relying on or derived from observation or experiment: empirical results that supported the hypothesis.
b)Verifiable or provable by means of observation or experiment: empirical laws.
2. Guided by practical experience and not theory, especially in medicine.
To distinguish from true and false, Logic can certainly be used.





that's true, it can be used.  yet it yields no certainties.  furthermore it's not necessary to use logic with empirical evidence.  even if we were to assume that logic is a valuable tool, it would not be the only valuable tool.  "i see red" yet i see no deductions.

Quote:

how can anything be known for certain?
Well, take the fact that water freezes at 32 degrees Fahrenheit.
How is this known for certain? Observation.



yet even something as taken-for-granted as gravity was re-visioned as recently as last century with relativity.  what's beautiful about science IMO is that it makes no statements with absolute certainty, but allows for the perpetual evolution of its theories and hypotheses.


Quote:

i think emotion is the sole determinant of human behavior, not reason.

The sole determinant? Oh please. Stop with the black and white thinking and use some rationality.




i stand by my statement 100%.  IMO it's an old myth in our culture that intellect and emotions are separate things that perpetuates much of contemporary neuroscience (but not all).  if you ask me, it's precisely why we haven't been able to create artificial sentience.  the computer is a system of symbols that have no meaning for the computer itself.  what it lacks is a way of grounding its knowledge, for its knowledge to have any meaning for it.  if you ask me, emotions and intellect necessarily fall on a single spectrum.

rationality- you make it sound like there's two places for the ego to inhabit- emotion and the rational.  yet no person will be rational who has no motivation to be.  plainly, rationality is one kind of motivated behavior.  it's caught up in motivation/emotion/desire just as everything else in our consciousness.  rationality is a subset of emotion; a small island in an ocean of madness.

Quote:

It is as important to understand with the feelings as well as with the intellect. Both must develop together and equally in order to maintain balance.




balance implies conflict, and i have no doubt that intellect and emotions often conflict- but do they necessarily conflict?

Quote:

A person dominated by his intellect is a repetitious tape-recorder.



yet the tape-recorder is the way he is because of his emotions; like the person with OCD who relapses on her mother's death; or the person who devotes himself to the study of math when the rest of his life lets him down.

Quote:

An individual commanded by his emotions is an unpredictably erupting volcano.




that sounds like anger.  if i am angry at someone, yet i like to think of myself as a compassionate person because of my particular identity needs, maybe it's possible for me to express my anger without being hurtful?  emotions will appropriately regulate a person's actions, spontaneously, if that person has integrated emotion X with whichever other emotions are relevant to the issue at hand.


--------------------
"consensus on the nature of equilibrium is usually established by periodic conflict." -henry kissinger


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Offlinecrunchytoast
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: crunchytoast]
    #4792025 - 10/12/05 12:07 PM (16 years, 1 month ago)

Quote:

But in any situation where there is a serious decision that needs to be made -- should I buy stock in IBM or use that same money to buy Bluebunny Power Tools Corporation stock, it would be an error to buy Bluebunny solely on the basis that bunnies make you smile and blue is your favorite color. The way you feel about bunnies and the color blue is entirely irrelevant to the determination of which company is more likely to provide you a profit.




when i make decisions like this, and i think about what stock to buy, all sorts of emotions come up- for example, i see a company with look price-to-book ratio and that makes me want to buy it, since i know that, in the past, such companies tend to outperform the rest of the stock market. yet i feel fearful when i learn that the company has lots of debt and negative cashflow. the reason i feel fear is because i believe that lots of debt and negative cashflow are potential problems. i don't buy. yet if i had repressed my fear, the cognition implicit in that fear would have had no meaning for me, and i would have exposed myself to unnecessary risk.

but you make a good point that not every single emotion is applicable in every single way, when thinking about an issue.


--------------------
"consensus on the nature of equilibrium is usually established by periodic conflict." -henry kissinger


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OfflinePhred
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: crunchytoast]
    #4792173 - 10/12/05 12:40 PM (16 years, 1 month ago)

Quote:

when i make decisions like this, and i think about what stock to buy, all sorts of emotions come up- for example, i see a company with look price-to-book ratio and that makes me want to buy it, since i know that, in the past, such companies tend to outperform the rest of the stock market. yet i feel fearful when i learn that the company has lots of debt and negative cashflow. the reason i feel fear is because i believe that lots of debt and negative cashflow are potential problems. i don't buy. yet if i had repressed my fear, the cognition implicit in that fear would have had no meaning for me, and i would have exposed myself to unnecessary risk.




Either you are overstating your case or your decision making process differs from my own. I don't decline to buy Bluebunny out of fear that I will lose my money, I decline because I can see its potential downside outweighs its potential upside. There is neither "fear" nor "joy" involved in my evaluation. Recognizing that a stock is likely to underperform is not equivalent to being "fearful" of it -- I'm not afraid of Bluebunny in any way shape or form. I would undoubtedly feel unhappy over losing my nest egg if I bought Bluebunny and the stock tanked, but I don't spend the effort I do on researching what to do with my nest egg in order to avoid experiencing the emotion of unhappiness, I expend the effort so I don't end up destitute. Huge difference.

Reality is a harsh mistress. Emotions are no aid to correctly apprehending reality.




Phred


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Offlinecrunchytoast
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Re: Rationality, Objectivity and Logic [Re: Phred]
    #4792403 - 10/12/05 01:31 PM (16 years, 1 month ago)

Quote:

Either you are overstating your case or your decision making process differs from my own.




i would say that it's similar, but i think our vocabularies are different.

Quote:

I don't decline to buy Bluebunny out of fear that I will lose my money, I decline because I can see its potential downside outweighs its potential upside.




IOW it's a "bad bet" ?

Quote:

There is neither "fear" nor "joy" involved in my evaluation. Recognizing that a stock is likely to underperform is not equivalent to being "fearful" of it -- I'm not afraid of Bluebunny in any way shape or form. I would undoubtedly feel unhappy over losing my nest egg if I bought Bluebunny and the stock tanked, but I don't spend the effort I do on researching what to do with my nest egg in order to avoid experiencing the emotion of unhappiness, I expend the effort so I don't end up destitute. Huge difference.




a subtle but minor difference IMO. ending up destitute as a possible future is something "bad" in your eyes- i would say, ending up destitute is something you dislike, and may even fear for all i know. i believe that when a person dislikes something, feelings like fear or revulsion or digust occur to them when they consider that thing, even if these feelings are accompanied by verbal expressions, such as "buying this stock would jeopardize my nest egg."

like, if i hate spiders, and i find a spider crawling up my arm, i will be filled with disgust or fear or some other displeasure.

Quote:

Reality is a harsh mistress. Emotions are no aid to correctly apprehending reality.




i'm not going to disagree; but i will say that a motivation is the only thing that determines how a person acts, and furthermore that rationality is but a subset of motivation.

i think emotions are the result of experience interacting with our motivations in pleasant or unpleasant ways. so even thoughts about hypothetical events have emotional meanings.


--------------------
"consensus on the nature of equilibrium is usually established by periodic conflict." -henry kissinger


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