• Paulm12
    67
    Obviously if we are doing philosophy, we try to use reason/rationality to make an argument and avoid contradictions. However is reason simply, as the postmodernists would argue, just another normative way of looking at the world that creates a power structure?

    Note that I’m using reason as defined as:
    the power of the mind to think, understand, and form judgments by a process of logic

    Or does it correspond to reality because our observed physical reality seems to follow some level of consistency as well? In order to use logic to understand our world, we in some way have to assume our world is logically intelligible and predictable.

    In other words, what our our reasons for trusting reason/logic?
  • Agent Smith
    4.4k
    creates justifies a power structure — Paulm12

    :scream: :grimace:

    That's why instead of logos, I advocate xin!

    Good luck!
  • Paulm12
    67
    that’s actually an interesting concept, I’ve been reading a few articles on it now that you brought it up. Often when we use “reason” to find an answer there’s an emotional piece to it too, like the satisfaction of resolving a contradiction or the feeling that a certain answer “isn’t just right.”
  • Agent Smith
    4.4k
    You're on the right track!
  • 180 Proof
    8.4k
    Reason, while misusable and in some respects is inadequate for adapting to reality, works better – more reliably, more defeasibly – than all of the alternatives.

    I advocate xin!Agent Smith
    :up:
  • Janus
    12.2k
    That's why instead of logos, I advocate xin!Agent Smith

    :up: The heart of reason or reason of the heart.
  • Agent Smith
    4.4k
    The heart of reason or reason of the heart.Janus

    It's just a thought!
  • Janus
    12.2k
    It's just a thought!Agent Smith

    From the heart, I hope.
  • Agent Smith
    4.4k
    From the heart, I hope.Janus

    I hope too.
  • Angelo Cannata
    152
    what our our reasons for trusting reasonPaulm12

    It is important to note that it is reason that defeats itself. Realizing that reason is a circular process, as you have shown, is an entirely rational process: you don’t need any element external to reason to show that reason is fundamentally unreliable, self-contradictory.

    This means that the statement “everything is relative” is not an external idea introduced by relativists. It is reason itself that says that reason is invalid. As a consequence, once reason has concluded that reason is invalid, you cannot apply the criterion to the sentence itself, to say that, as a consequence, the statement is wrong. This is the mistake made by those who apply the statement “everything is relative” to itself, to conclude that the statement itself is relative and, as a consequence, something must be non-relative. This is a mistake, because, once reason has said that reason is invalid, you cannot apply the conclusion to the statement itself, because, applying the conclusion to itself would mean ignoring what it has said: once reason has said that reason is invalid, the consequence is that we must stop reasoning, which means we cannot carry on by applying the conclusion to itself. After reason has said that itself is invalid, applying this to itself again is an invalid action. Applying the conclusion to itself would mean treating reason as something that is still valid, still working.

    As a consequence of all of this, such concepts like “foundation”, “fundamental”, need to be abandoned. We need to resign ourselves to give up the comfort and reassurance given by the idea of foundation. There are no hard props to rely on, everything is like liquid.

    It is important to note that “liquid”, “relative”, does not mean “nothing”. Liquids have a certain degree of consistency. We just need to calibrate our actions to that degree of consistency. You cannot stand on water, but you can swim and a ship is able to travel on it; water is even able to make holes on rocks and metals, if sprayed with enough pressure.
  • Philosophim
    1.2k
    What do you consider reason? Its a broad word that is often interpreted differently by different people.

    My summation of reason is the following.

    1. Concluding and acting upon which is logically undeniable. In other words, using deductions where possible.

    2. Understanding one's limitations, and the fact that one's deductive construct could be wrong. Thus being open to new information, and acceptance of one's own possible failings.

    3. Using cogent inductions where it is impossible to deduce.

    I believe reason is a tool to help us understand and be able to handle reality at a more capable level than without reason. Its not that being reasonable will guaranty a successful outcome, its that in general, it will much more than if you are not being reasonable.
  • Hillary
    1.9k


    Science can't offer a reason for existence. The magical appearance of something out of complete nothing is reason-devoid and as such an irrational explanation.
  • Manuel
    2.5k


    What's the alternative to doing this for life? Going on intuition and emotion all the time?

    That's not going to help you get very far, in fact, it's likely to get oneself killed. The "postmodernists" who argue otherwise are using reason to justify whatever they say, so...
  • Harry Hindu
    4.8k
    Reason, while misusable and in some respects is inadequate for adapting to reality, works better – more reliably, more defeasibly – than all of the alternatives.180 Proof
    Yes. And there must be a reason for this.
  • Harry Hindu
    4.8k
    In other words, what our our reasons for trusting reason?Paulm12
    For one, you wouldn't be able to communicate if not for reason. Using language is an endeavor in reason.
  • Joshs
    3.2k

    What's the alternative to doing this for life? Going on intuition and emotion all the time?

    That's not going to help you get very far, in fact, it's likely to get oneself killed. The "postmodernists" who argue otherwise are using reason to justify whatever they say, so..
    Manuel

    The postmodernists are pointing out that Reason is a subset of value , and value is affective. Thus reason is organized and gets its sense on the basis of affective comportment, how the world matters and is relevant to us.
  • Hillary
    1.9k
    Reason, while misusable and in some respects is inadequate for adapting to reality, works better – more reliably, more defeasibly – than all of the alternatives.180 Proof

    That depends on the question asked. When the great scientists Prof. Dr. Proof is asked what the reason is that there is a material universe he might answer that there is no reason, which is merely an expression of his ignorance, hidden beneath denial. It's a cover-up tactic which is used.
  • Joshs
    3.2k
    ↪Paulm12 Reason, while misusable and in some respects is inadequate for adapting to reality, works better – more reliably, more defeasibly – than all of the alternatives.180 Proof

    Until it doesn’t. Reason is playing games within a value frame. All the while the frame itself is ever so subtlety being turned topsy turvey. Until lo and behold , one finds oneself in a new value frame , and has to create new games of reason. It’s transformation of value which drives cultural and scientific metamorphosis , and reason is impotent here.
  • Clarky
    9.1k
    What do you consider reason? Its a broad word that is often interpreted differently by different people.Philosophim

    I was going to make a similar comment. People toss the word "reason" around a lot without being very specific about what it means. I don't have any particular problem with your definition, but I note that the vast majority of human cognition is not found within its borders. Reason is just a tool.
  • Jackson
    938
    In other words, what our our reasons for trusting reason?Paulm12

    I would trust a sound argument or explanation. Not just because it is 'rational.'
  • Gnomon
    2.3k
    In other words, what our our reasons for trusting reason?Paulm12
    Some people trust Reason over Intuition, partly because they want to be as rigorous as possible in their conclusions. When exposed to public scrutiny, their reasons can be expressed in objective terms, while subjective Intuition is difficult to justify, except by empathy : "you feel me?". Pragmatic reasoning is like arithmetic : 1 + 1 = 2, but intuitive insights can be creative : 1 + 1a = 2a. Precise reasoning is necessary for scientific purposes, to cancel-out the fuzzy fringes of intuition. But intuitive inspiration is also necessary to point in the right direction to the unknown destination. :smile:

    "I believe in intuitions and inspirations...I sometimes FEEL that I am right. I do not KNOW that I am.”
    ― Albert Einstein

    The only real valuable thing is intuition.”- Albert Einstein

    Intuition is like reading a word without having to spell it out. A child can’t do that because it has had so little experience. A grown-up person knows the word because they’ve seen it often before.”― Agatha Christie
  • Hillary
    1.9k
    The reason is the why. What's reasonable for me might be unreasonable for you. Is the universe reasonable? Can we apply the why-question to it (including all life in it)? Can cosmology offer a reason for the existence of the cosmos? Several attempts have been made to paint a self sufficient picture, i.e., the cosmos being it's own cause. Obviously there is circularity at play here, because the question remains what the reason is for a self-causing universe in the first place. I can offer a cosmology in which the ending of a cosmos is the trigger for a next, but the reason is not included, i.e., my cosmology is irrational.

    Now, one can eliminate the need for a reason, but that's even more irrational than providing a cause.
  • 180 Proof
    8.4k
    More than that it works – why?
  • 180 Proof
    8.4k
    Equivocation confuses you.
  • 180 Proof
    8.4k
    Yeah, which is why I characterize reason as "in some respects is inadequate ..."; and yet reason is also indispensible, no? Not "perfect", but good enough – usually much better than non / un reasoning.
  • Clarky
    9.1k
    The reason is the why. What's reasonable for me might be unreasonable for you. Is the universe reasonable? Can we apply the why-question to it (including all life in it)? Can cosmology offer a reason for the existence of the cosmos? Several attempts have been made to paint a self sufficient picture, i.e., the cosmos being it's own cause. Obviously there is circularity at play here, because the question remains what the reason is for a self-causing universe in the first place. I can offer a cosmology in which the ending of a cosmos is the trigger for a next, but the reason is not included, i.e., my cosmology is irrational.Hillary

    I think this just highlights what @Philosophim wrote. It's important to define what we mean by "reason." Reason, as it is discussed in the opening post, is a process for finding the truth. A reason, as you are discussing it, is different. It's another word for a cause or purpose. They are completely different things.
  • Hillary
    1.9k
    Reason, as it is discussed in the opening post, is a process for finding the truthT Clark

    But the aim is to find the true reason for existence. Causes give no answer, only a description.
  • Hillary
    1.9k
    Reason, as it is discussed in the opening post, is a process for finding the truthT Clark

    It depends on your frame of reference what reason is used. There is no such thing as pure reason. That's an abstraction applicable for an imaginary world only.
  • Clarky
    9.1k
    But the aim is to find the true reason for existence. Causes give no answer, only a description.Hillary

    Ok, but you're still talking about "reason" in a different sense than the OP is. Reason, as it is normally used, is not the process of finding the reason for existence.
  • Joshs
    3.2k
    Joshs Yeah, which is why I characterize reason as "in some respects is inadequate ..."; and yet reason is also indispensible, no? Not "perfect", but good enough – usually much better than non / un reasoning.180 Proof

    When we think of reasoning we tend to gravitate toward formal systems like logic or mathematics. What doesn't immediately come to mind is the kind reasoning that psychotherapists see in their clients. To me this is the most important kind of reasoning , because our anxieties, confusions , fears, anger and guilt define the limits of our sense making powers. An emotional
    outburst is a kind of reasoning, a coping
    stance toward a world which has become difficult to assimilate. By this measure , reason in its broadest sense isn’t a capacity we sometimes use and sometimes
    fail to use. Rather, reason is synonymous with sense making , which we are always doing as long as we are alive. Our motivational-affective system is wholly in service of anticipating and assimilating events. The optimally well-adjusted individual doesn’t need to know any formal logic or math. The kind of
    reasoning that they employ entails the ability to partially unravel a crumbling scheme of understanding and experiment with and explore incipient new ways
    of looking at a situation. As a result of
    trial and error, a new workable anticipatory stance emerges, and can then be tightened up using math or logic
    But if these are relied upon too heavily, they will hamper the ability to reconstrue when the next crisis of understanding arrives.
  • Clarky
    9.1k
    It depends on your frame of reference what reason is used. There is no such thing as pure reason. That's an abstraction applicable for an imaginary world only.Hillary

    I'm just talking about regular old normal, impure reason. The kind you and I are involved in here.
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