DonandVicki:DonandVicki wrote: All too often emotions are in the drivers seat when we are trying to think clearly and respond appropriately.
I have read statements like the one above many times, but this time, I will accept the challenge contained therein. Consider that if you are in the driver's seat, and see a very large truck sliding toward your vehicle, clear thinking does not always help you. In many instances your fear of death will trigger your instincts and flood your body with adrenaline, which in turn will stop clear thinking. Instead, instinctive reactions will automatically save you from death--and these instinctive reactions are caused by and work through emotion. So sometimes, it is important for emotion to be in the driver's seat.
There is a concerted effort to remove emotion from philosophy; to pretend that it is not necessary or relevant. But emotion is a fundamental part of what it is to be human, so to deny the relevance of emotion is to deny an aspect of humanity. I will grant that emotion is difficult to understand, but if we decide to deny it's existence or worth, are we doing it out of clear thinking? Or are we doing it out of confusion and fear because we do not understand it? I suspect that when we deny the value of emotion, the denial is based upon an emotional decision. There is probably an ad hominem rule regarding this kind of circular thinking--Scott would know.
I hope that you do not think that I am doing the challenge authority thing. Although ad hominems can not find truth, they are very good at finding falsehoods, so they do have value in philosophy. I just can't use them because I can't remember them. That is one of my many gifts from MS (multiple sclerosis), as it not only reduced my vocabulary to half of what it was, it also made it difficult for me to learn new terms. It is very frustrating. I can learn a new term, and one hour later, I don't know what it means. So I keep my Chamber's Concise Dictionary, the Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy, and a Thesaurus on hand, and look a lot of things up in Wiki. In the two years that I have been using Wiki, it has never disappointed, and when there is a question as to the validity of it's contents, it states as much within the text--so I trust it.