It’s been commonly thought throughout psychology and philosophy that ’emotion’ is illogical and that balance is achieved through rejecting all emotion for a Spock-like reason-sought existence.
Uhm…ok, I’ll let the following excerpt speak for itself and then leave you a quote..
[Over the next few weeks, I’ll be reading a book called: “feel: the power of listening to your heart” and I think it’s important to study it some more so I’ll be researching it outside of just this book but this one is the catalyst for looking into the whole thing. I hope you take this short journey with me and let’s start off with this excerpt..Read about Elliot below..]
Elliot began getting headaches and was diagnosed with a brain tumor. After a skilled team of surgeons removed the growth and Elliot regained consciousness. It was clear that he had retained his intelligence. His family was happy that he was okay. He was a good husband and father.
However, as he returned to normal living, he was no longer able to order his life. Faced with going to work, he needed to be told what to do. At work, he could not keep on task, he easily became distracted by trivial things. He could spend all afternoon trying to figure out whether to organize a file by date, subject or size. he could not prioritize one task above another. He could perform any single task just as well as ever, but to figure out how much time to give to what was beyond him. He was fired from his job. And fired. And fired again.
Elliot was eventually forced to apply for disability because he could not work successfully. The psychologists who interviewed Elliot saw that he had a great memory of the events of his life, was intelligent, and could make meaningful conversation. at first glance, Elliot seemed very capable. The reviewers declared him mentally competent, and his claims for disability were repeatedly denied.
Enter Dr. Damasio and his team of researchers. After numerous mental tests, Damasio determined that Elliot possessed a very high IQ and a very good memory. Puzzled by this in light of Elliot’s history, Damasio realized that he had evaluated only Elliot’s intelligence while ignoring his emotions. He found that Elliot could tell his own tragic story with onyl detached interest. There was no anguish over his firings, failed marriages, and inability to lead a normal life. After hours of talking, there was no hint of sadness, or frustration with the endless questions, or any emotional reaction to the process. He felt no love for music he had once enjoyed; he felt no sorrow when shown gory images of destruction or devastation.
Elliot knew just as many facts as he had before the tumor was removed, but he felt nothing for anything. Next, Damasio tested Elliot’s social and moral reasoning with a battery of problem-solving tests. he came out totally normal or even above average – that is, on paper tests.
Elliot could reason out what the moral choice should be, but with all the variable choices of real life, he was totally incapable of making a good decision between right and wrong. his lack of emotions prevented him from attaching any significance to a particular choice. With no emotion to guide his reason, he could not choose. Elliot was no longer a rational person.
Damasion draws some powerful conclusions; “The powers of reason and the experience of emotion decline together, and their impairment stands out in a neuropsychological profile within which basic attention, memory, intelligence, and language appear so intact that they could never be invoked to explain the patients’ failures in judgement.”
I should note that the book has heavily studied the contrast between Christian writers and the Bible to illustrate that the latter is heavily emotional and most of the former have followed the views of Darwin, James, Descartes and Freud, and the two are far apart from each other. So the quotes may or may not have a certain direction, you’ll notice so no need for me to overemphasize. Her’s the quote:
“How can the mind be aroused to taste the divine goodness without at the same time being wholly kindled to love God in return? For truly, that abundant sweetness which God has stored up for those who fear him cannot be known without at the same time powerfully moving us.” – John Calvin