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Nick_A



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PostSubject: Emotion   Thu Apr 03, 2008 6:06 pm

Hello All

Does Panendeism recognize objective emotional quality?

We seem to recognize objective intellectual quality as in mathematics or chess for example and recognize superior mathematicians and chess players. Does Panendeism recognize a comparable scale of emotional quality? If not, what is the purpose of emotion and what does it indicate according to Panendeism
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Aaron
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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Thu Apr 03, 2008 8:26 pm

Hello Nick and welcome. Smile

That's a good question. I'll give it some thought and get back to you.

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Uriah



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Thu Apr 03, 2008 8:49 pm

For my part I think emotions serve the function of being the voice of our unconscious mind, and how it is interpreting outside stimuli.
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Paul Anthony



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Thu Apr 03, 2008 9:24 pm

Emotion describes the method of thinking we used before we had the capacity to reason. It is a primitive thought process, and served us well from an evolutionary perspective, but it can often conflict with our rational thought.

We are not likely to lose the capacity for emotions (we're not Vulcans) but civilized society does require a balance of emotion and reason. For example, emotions give us the "fight or flight" option, while reason offers a third choice: conversation and compromise. Obviously, our ancient ancestors didn't have this third option before the advent of language.

Our species survived by reacting emotionally to situations as they occurred. Because we can anticipate future events, we are not required to live our lives in a reactive manner all the time. People who live only that way live very unstable lives.
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Nick_A



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Thu Apr 03, 2008 10:15 pm

Thanks for the responses guys. I'm anxious to read what Aaron writes on this. I see it a bit differently as of now and will explain after Aaron returns.

By the way Aaron, I see you are from Connecticut and I live in NY by the Tappanzee bridge. We may be neighbors. Smile
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Helium



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Fri Apr 04, 2008 12:06 am

At this point, I'm inclined to equate emotion, intellect, spirit and physical as equally important.

I think every person has a different balance.

But it's the "I" in the person, the part of the person that exists apart from these four states, that has to control them. It is up to the "I" in the person to manage these forces in a positive (or negative) fashion.

So in that sense they're all neutral, because they are a part of everybody. And the real litmus test is how the "I" in the person deals with these four aspects of himself.
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Aaron
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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Fri Apr 04, 2008 10:24 am

Nick_A wrote:
Thanks for the responses guys. I'm anxious to read what Aaron writes on this. I see it a bit differently as of now and will explain after Aaron returns.

By the way Aaron, I see you are from Connecticut and I live in NY by the Tappanzee bridge. We may be neighbors. Smile

Yes we are probably about an hour from each other. I live in upper New Haven County.

I don't know if you've heard of Ken Wilber or "Integral Theory", but in Integral Theory Wilber proposes a four quadrant model that represents the four main aspects of sentient "holons". The upper left hand quadrant represents our individual subjective consciousness.



As you can see, the model suggests that consciousness unfolds in an evolutionary progression where one stage transcends and includes each lower stage. In Wilber's model "emotion" develops at "stage 8" along with the human limbic system (upper right). As we progress up the evolutionary spiral of consciousness, newer and more complex forms of reasoning become available to us. These newer and more complex forms of reasoning are based on and include all lower forms of reasoning.

So based on this model, it's my opinion that emotions are an integral part of the process of human reason and consciousness in general. It's just that "the higher" forms of reasoning are more inclusive and have the potential of dealing with a greater variety of complex and non-complex issues.

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Nick_A



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Fri Apr 04, 2008 1:23 pm

Aaron

The diagram is misleading for me and it may be taken out of context in that neither emotion or sensation seem to reflect differences in their quality.

We know in sensation for example that some can hear in quarter tones while most with their ears deadened through modern life are lucky not to be tone deaf. The same is true with distinguishing subtlety in color. The question becomes whether or not our emotions have been dulled to only express negative emotions normal for imaginary egotism.

If our senses and emotions have been so dulled and our responses to the external world are based primarily on imagination or acquired preconceptions how awake are we really to reality? Is it possible that the diagram represents an ideal that doesn't exist for us?

Take the word conscience for example. Usually it is considered related to societal views of right and wrong. Could it also be similar to consciousness for us in that it exists as a potential. If consciousness is to know everything simultaneously could conscience be the ability to simultaneously feel everything? If it were, who would have the guts to survive the experience of all our inner lies and contradictions?

The rational can give direction but lacks the force to actualize it. The emotions provide force but lack direction. The intellect compares and the emotions determine quality. How does reason convince the emotions that it benefits by reason so can make use of its force?

I agree with helium that we need this balance but suppose we lack this "I" that can bring order into our being, how can we help bring it into being?
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Uriah



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Fri Apr 04, 2008 4:16 pm

In the Jungian view, our conscience is a voice of inner wisdom emanating directly from our unconscious self. Just as emotions are sensory, and perceptual, forms of communication from our unconscious, our "still small voice" - the conscience - is the moral compass of the unconscious. Jung said, in fact, “Through our conscience one becomes conscious.”
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Nick_A



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Fri Apr 04, 2008 5:22 pm

Uriah wrote:
In the Jungian view, our conscience is a voice of inner wisdom emanating directly from our unconscious self. Just as emotions are sensory, and perceptual, forms of communication from our unconscious, our "still small voice" - the conscience - is the moral compass of the unconscious. Jung said, in fact, “Through our conscience one becomes conscious.”

Yes and wisdom is the highest quality of emotional knowledge. It provides the force for conscious action.

Apatheia is a term most often used in Stoicism meaning freedom from emotion. Yet I know it also in esoteric Christianity as the freedom from emotion that allows the experience of "feelings" that originate from a higher conscious plane of existence that we can grow into. It allows us to put rational knowledge into a human inwardly moral perspective.

It seems to me that emotional knowledge revealing quality of being and rational knowledge which is based on comparison are complimentary.
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Aaron
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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Fri Apr 04, 2008 8:36 pm

Nick_A wrote:
Aaron

The diagram is misleading for me and it may be taken out of context in that neither emotion or sensation seem to reflect differences in their quality.

Yes it is a general map. It's meant to convey some general stages of development. Evolution is rarely as clear and linear as such maps show them to be.

If I was going to do a map for trees it might progress from acorn, to sapling, to tree. While such a map would correctly illustrate the basic stages of development, it wouldn't do much to clarify the fact that some trees grow very large, very quickly and others don't. To illustrate those qualities I'd need to show at least one more axis in my model.

Even though this basic model isn't capable of showing all the different aspects and intricacies of consciousness, it does do a pretty good job of showing the basics of the evolution of phenomenology and it's objective physical correlates and how they may relate to one another.

Nick_A wrote:
We know in sensation for example that some can hear in quarter tones while most with their ears deadened through modern life are lucky not to be tone deaf. The same is true with distinguishing subtlety in color. The question becomes whether or not our emotions have been dulled to only express negative emotions normal for imaginary egotism.

If our senses and emotions have been so dulled and our responses to the external world are based primarily on imagination or acquired preconceptions how awake are we really to reality? Is it possible that the diagram represents an ideal that doesn't exist for us?

Well, I think the diagram simply shows the progression of evolutionary stages. I think we all go through these basic stages (in varying degrees of course.). Many of them while we are still in our mother's womb.

Things like perception and emotions are simply different ways for our minds to make sense out of, and interact with, the outside world. I think it's true to a certain extent that before we gained our "higher" capacities of reason our other "lower" capacities were probably sharper. In many cases reason (often in the form of monkey mind) can get in the way of our more basic ways of apprehending reality. This is why so many people utilize "trans-rational" and "pre-rational" practices like meditation and prayer in order to focus their attention back on these more basic ways of viewing reality.

Nick_A wrote:
The rational can give direction but lacks the force to actualize it. The emotions provide force but lack direction. The intellect compares and the emotions determine quality. How does reason convince the emotions that it benefits by reason so can make use of its force?

IMO, "the rational" transcends but includes emotions. In other words there is no dualistic separation between the two. Sometimes emotions play a small roll in our reasoning processes and sometimes they a large role. The mixture is controlled by a number of factors from outside stimuli to one's internal chemical make-up.

Nick_A wrote:
I agree with helium that we need this balance but suppose we lack this "I" that can bring order into our being, how can we help bring it into being?

I think the "I" is another evolutionary aspect that begins to develop as our ability to formulate concepts begins to develop. (This would be stage 10 on the diagram.) In it's early stages it takes the form of the raw ego. This is what is often called the egocentric stage of development. At some point our egos become aware of other egos and try to connect with them. This is the ethnocentric stage of development. Then at some point our egos learn to turn in on themselves. This is called the "self-aware" stage of development. And the development of the "I" progresses on from there.

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Nick_A



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Sat Apr 05, 2008 1:04 am

Hi Aaron

There are some fascinating questions here.

Quote :
Things like perception and emotions are simply different ways for our minds to make sense out of, and interact with, the outside world. I think it's true to a certain extent that before we gained our "higher" capacities of reason our other "lower" capacities were probably sharper. In many cases reason (often in the form of monkey mind) can get in the way of our more basic ways of apprehending reality. This is why so many people utilize "trans-rational" and "pre-rational" practices like meditation and prayer in order to focus their attention back on these more basic ways of viewing reality.

Could you elaborate on what you mean by "higher?" I see associative thought as our computer mind. it has been programmed with a lot of false preconceptions we've believed to be necessary to function in society which means we are basically living lies. How is this higher then direct sensory or emotional impressions of the external world?

IMO, "the rational"
Quote :
transcends but includes emotions. In other words there is no dualistic separation between the two. Sometimes emotions play a small roll in our reasoning processes and sometimes they a large role. The mixture is controlled by a number of factors from outside stimuli to one's internal chemical make-up.

Do you recognize purely emotional reactions like blind rage or killing in a fight? What is the function of rational thought in an episode of road rage?

The mother love of a dog or a bear does not require reason. Isn't it the same with humans? Perhaps sometimes just as emotion is a part of thought, thought is a part of emotional reaction.

Quote :
I think the "I" is another evolutionary aspect that begins to develop as our ability to formulate concepts begins to develop. (This would be stage 10 on the diagram.) In it's early stages it takes the form of the raw ego. This is what is often called the egocentric stage of development. At some point our egos become aware of other egos and try to connect with them. This is the ethnocentric stage of development. Then at some point our egos learn to turn in on themselves. This is called the "self-aware" stage of development. And the development of the "I" progresses on from there.

This is where I begin to disagree since I've proven to myself that this old idea of Man being asleep to reality and living in imagination as described in Plato's cave analogy and the Buddhist parable of the burning house is quite accurate. If this is true, associative thought is of limited value.

It is often thought that conscious awareness develops automatically but I don't believe this is true. Developing consciousness requires intentional efforts to do so. If not, only the dreams change.

We believe we are self aware but actually our self awareness is limited to brief intervals insufficient for developing sustained self awareness. I've found it takes humility to admit this and many people do not want to consider this limitation and prefer the joys of imagination.

Simone Weil gave me another shock when I saw how I am the victim of imagination. She wrote:

Quote :
"Nothing is so beautiful and wonderful, nothing is so continually fresh and surprising, so full of sweet and perpetual ecstasy, as the good. No desert is so dreary, monotonous, and boring as evil. This is the truth about authentic good and evil. With fictional good and evil it is the other way round. Fictional good is boring and flat, while fictional evil is varied and intriguing, attractive, profound, and full of charm." Simone Weil
From "Morality and Literature,”
an essay published in Cahiers du Sud, January 1944

Of course as a broad shouldered Aries male I sense this is wrong. Yet I see she is right and the truth of the matter is that I don't really understand good and evil as objective qualities and what defines them.

But for my development of consciousness and emotional quality, it requires being intentionally free of the limiting joys of imagination that deny reality. Not so easy.
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Aaron
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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Sat Apr 05, 2008 11:28 am

Nick_A wrote:
Could you elaborate on what you mean by "higher?" I see associative thought as our computer mind. it has been programmed with a lot of false preconceptions we've believed to be necessary to function in society which means we are basically living lies. How is this higher then direct sensory or emotional impressions of the external world?

It's "higher" in complexity and "embrace" not necessarily quality. In other words I'm not necessarily "better" than my cat but I am more significant. I write "higher" but evolution could just as easily be described as a root growing and bisecting to increasing depths of complexity as well.

Nick_A wrote:
Do you recognize purely emotional reactions like blind rage or killing in a fight? What is the function of rational thought in an episode of road rage?

I think those are situations where our emotions take over. This is usually a result of existential living conditions. Traumatic experiences elicit fight or flight instincts. Usually once the outside conditions change we are able to settle back into a more rational (logical) mode of consciousness.

Nick_A wrote:
The mother love of a dog or a bear does not require reason. Isn't it the same with humans? Perhaps sometimes just as emotion is a part of thought, thought is a part of emotional reaction.

Well, yes. I think emotions are just a basic type of reasoning process. Higher forms of reasoning are built upon emotion and all lower forms of reasoning and apprehension.

Nick_A wrote:
This is where I begin to disagree since I've proven to myself that this old idea of Man being asleep to reality and living in imagination as described in Plato's cave analogy and the Buddhist parable of the burning house is quite accurate. If this is true, associative thought is of limited value.

Well, I think due to our limited perceptions our ability to directly apprehend reality will always be limited. However, as our capacity for complex thought grows, I think our ability to gain insight (even if that insight is an abstraction) will grow.

Nick_A wrote:
We believe we are self aware but actually our self awareness is limited to brief intervals insufficient for developing sustained self awareness. I've found it takes humility to admit this and many people do not want to consider this limitation and prefer the joys of imagination.

Yes, I think self-awareness is something that starts out in a very abstract manner, however with effort it is possible to gain true "non-dual" self-awareness. As a matter of fact, this type of "non-dual" self-awareness is something entirely different than the developmental self-awareness that I was talking about earlier. One deals with awareness of the ego, the other deals with awareness of the conscious interplay between the "objective" world and our "subjective" world. It's this conscious awareness of the process of reasoning that leads to the realization of connectedness and the non-dual nature of reality.

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Negoba



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Wed Apr 23, 2008 12:10 am

This debate has been the subject of debate in psychology for a long long time.

Probably the most simplistic view of emotion is the model where the cognitive brain interprets the responses of the autonomic nervous system.

Emotion is definitely a bridge of sorts between different levels of the mind. Perhaps it is more than that.
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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Mon Jun 09, 2008 12:43 am

I think emotions first started with reproduction. Love, may have been the first emotion, which brought with it sadness and happiness.

It may have started first when animals begin to care for the young and had to have some sort of attachment to want to raise them.
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Helium



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Mon Jun 09, 2008 10:02 am

Quote :
I think emotions first started with reproduction. Love, may have been the first emotion, which brought with it sadness and happiness.

It may have started first when animals begin to care for the young and had to have some sort of attachment to want to raise them.

Yes, I would agree with that. I think that is, indeed, what sparked the genesis of "love".
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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:18 am

ReinGatto wrote:
I think emotions first started with reproduction. Love, may have been the first emotion, which brought with it sadness and happiness.

It may have started first when animals begin to care for the young and had to have some sort of attachment to want to raise them.

It probably started with self love because of our instinct to survive. If we love ourselves then we value our own life and if we value our own life then we will do everything we can to survive. When we began to love ourselves we also started to hate others. So, at the same time our most positive emotion was born our most negative one was born also.

Another way to look at it is that our survival instinct isn't strong enough to give us a drive to survive because we are an intelligent creature. If we had the exact same intelligence we do now without emotions then we would know that we will eventually die and see no reason to run from death but loving ourselves causes us to value ourselves.

Our self love causes us to naturally hope there is a god and an afterlife. So, a belief in God is natural. Is our nature lying to us or is it telling us the truth about God? If it is lying to us could Man still survive if he learns the truth?
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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:29 am

This all poses what to me seems an obvious question. Is emotion an inevitable consequence of self awareness?
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Schizophretard



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Tue Jun 10, 2008 3:43 am

stretmediq wrote:
This all poses what to me seems an obvious question. Is emotion an inevitable consequence of self awareness?

Yes ,I think it is and God probably is too.
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Aaron
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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Tue Jun 10, 2008 9:30 am

stretmediq wrote:
This all poses what to me seems an obvious question. Is emotion an inevitable consequence of self awareness?

IMO, emotion is a privative form of reasoning that exists long before self-awareness.

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Schizophretard



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Wed Jun 11, 2008 8:08 am

I disagree that emotion is a primitive form of reasoning that existed long before self-awareness. That makes it sound like emotions are just an outdated form of reasoning. Emotions are more than just reasoning. Having emotions is one of the things that make us truly alive. If we had no emotions then we would be nothing more than just biological robots and we would have no reason to live. I believe I exist for a reason and one of those reasons is to feel. If you took away my emotions then you would take away my soul.
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Aaron
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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Wed Jun 11, 2008 9:13 am

Schizophretard wrote:
I disagree that emotion is a primitive form of reasoning that existed long before self-awareness. That makes it sound like emotions are just an outdated form of reasoning.

No they are just a more base form of reasoning.

Schizophretard wrote:
Emotions are more than just reasoning. Having emotions is one of the things that make us truly alive. If we had no emotions then we would be nothing more than just biological robots and we would have no reason to live. I believe I exist for a reason and one of those reasons is to feel. If you took away my emotions then you would take away my soul.

I'm curious as to why you would say "just reasoning"? What's wrong with reasoning? I agree that emotions are an important part of the experience of life but IMO self awareness, and logical reasoning are just as important.

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Schizophretard



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PostSubject: Re: Emotion   Thu Jun 12, 2008 3:28 am

Aaron wrote:
Schizophretard wrote:
I disagree that emotion is a primitive form of reasoning that existed long before self-awareness. That makes it sound like emotions are just an outdated form of reasoning.

No they are just a more base form of reasoning.

Schizophretard wrote:
Emotions are more than just reasoning. Having emotions is one of the things that make us truly alive. If we had no emotions then we would be nothing more than just biological robots and we would have no reason to live. I believe I exist for a reason and one of those reasons is to feel. If you took away my emotions then you would take away my soul.

I'm curious as to why you would say "just reasoning"? What's wrong with reasoning? I agree that emotions are an important part of the experience of life but IMO self awareness, and logical reasoning are just as important.



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