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Rethinking Emotions

March 10, 2015
25 upvotes

I have rethought emotions since taking the red pill and I now view them as tools to be used, as opposed to my previous belief that they were things out of my control. For example, I now designate anger as a tool to be used when exercising. I do my best to not react out of anger when somebody does something that makes me mad, and instead save it for a later time. When I go to the gym and I'm about to do a set I recall what the person said and use all my anger then to lift the weights. I have found using this method for anger has proven to be more effective towards my goals than just exploding on some drunk dickhead at a party would have been. If your goal was to explode at rude drunkards at a party then I'd say save your anger for when that situation arises and knock him out (usually doesn't end well for anyone involved in my experience).

Aside from anger, I try to use other strong emotions such as love, jealousy, lust, etc. to achieve my goals as opposed to running my life. I use love to improve my relationship with my parents who have earned it and to cultivate friendships that will be beneficial to me as opposed to blowing all my love on somebody who will take it and give nothing in return (I did this alot in the past and it drained me emotionally). I try to focus hate on habits that keep me from achieving my goals. I try to focus emotions that impact me negatively such as lust and sadness towards creative outlets such as music and drawing. I'm posting this because I am wondering if anyone else views emotions like this, and if not how do you view emotions?

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Post Information
Title Rethinking Emotions
Author redeadxx
Upvotes 25
Comments 11
Date March 10, 2015 4:04 AM UTC (7 years ago)
Subreddit /r/AlreadyRed
Archive Link https://theredarchive.com/r/AlreadyRed/rethinking-emotions.1124219
https://theredarchive.com/post/1124219
Original Link https://old.reddit.com/r/AlreadyRed/comments/2yiuvp/rethinking_emotions/
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[–]IllimitableManillimitablemen.com 8 points9 points  (7 children) | Copy Link

Comment of mine from my blog relevant to this topic:

Question: why is it that logic is automatically of more value than emotion? Is it valid to use logic to determine that (even assuming you could)?

My response:

Both logic and emotion are subjective, but logic is more objective than emotion, and therefore, more reliable. Logic in and of itself is technically objective, it is pure as an abstract system, but because we are beings “tainted” with emotion, when we attempt to utilise logic we infuse our emotion into our logic contaminating it with subjectivity and thus agenda, which leads to fallacy. That’s why in fields of scientific research, objectivity, neutrality and impartiality are of the highest intellectual priority. Of course, due to politics and how funding is used to control what gets researched and for what agenda, this isn’t the case, but in a idealised world where funding was not economically weaponised as it is, this would be the way research worked. Whilst the free market dictates to academia, academia will pander to the needs of corporations to get funding. Whilst the government dictates a specific ideological dogma to academia (eg: multiculturalism, feminism, egalitarianism etc) then academia will set out to conduct studies which support rather than disagree with these views in order to secure funding.

Emotion is not reliable or predictable, logic, to a large degree, is. Not all logic is the same, there are many kinds of logic, and philosophers have attempted to dissect the different kinds of logic (inductive, deductive, logical fallacies etc) even though there are internal elements affecting it, it’s extrinsic in nature. Emotion on the other hand is simply whatever one feels in the moment. Emotion is primal, an animal instinct. Logic is a function of higher-thinking. A dog, for example, cannot logic as well as a human, because it lacks the higher reasoning capacity. Dogs operate almost entirely on instinct which acts off reaction to stimulus controlled by a biologically selected-for hard-wired system of morality, eg: “don’t steal my food, don’t hurt my puppies etc.” Outside of that, a dog has zero to minimal system of thought. If they did, they could invent like humans do. In that regard logic outside “primal logic” aka “instinct” or “the logic of instinct” is unique to humans, particularly men, and it’s logic which allows for the very platform we communicate on now and the high civilization we enjoy today. No amount of emotion in the world will create a civilization. Logic could, without emotion, “just to see.” Although one could certainly argue you may need to eradicate all emotions except curiosity to give logic the kick in the ass it needs to conduct experiments at all.

Emotion is fleeting and intrinsic. Emotion is useful in regulated doses to a degree, but in a way far different from logic. It’s not that emotion isn’t useful, but that it is less useful. Emotion is also far more dangerous than logic because it has a higher capacity to psychologically incapacitate somebody. Emotion drives people to logic in detrimental ways that bring about suicide, crime, self-harm etc. Logic without emotion leads to similar outcomes with far less frequency. There is very little one can learn about the world with emotion alone. Emotion normally acts as a trigger for logic and gives logic an agenda or purpose. The problems arise when there is far too much emotion and not enough logic (and this is common, particularly with women, who seem to lack emotional discipline.) It’s important to conserve a productive ratio of logic-to-emotion. Whatever that ratio may be, I am unsure of – perhaps it is something that warrants more research by the academic community.

Logic relies on observable facts and chains of reasoning which can be demonstrated. Evidence is a proof, which is a form of logic. Mathematics is a man-made system of symbols used to represent the logic of quantity. Anything that extrinsically supports the premise of another needs logic to do so. You cannot emote that a gun with a bullet missing was used to kill a person, you use deductive reasoning and probability to deduce that, which are forms of logic. When you see the gun and you emote, you feel curiosity (which may activate logic as a trigger emotion) or you may feel fear (stay away from that gun!) but emotion in and of itself won’t help you solve a mystery. Mystery is simply the absence of rational explanation. Mystery is an emotional word. If you translate mystery from “emotive” to “logical” you end up with the word inconclusive.

Emotion commands how you feel/your state of being and occasionally causes you to behave in ways which may or may not benefit you. For example: if most men acted on the aggressive impulses they feel, they’d all be locked up. Emotion, at times, must be suppressed/channelled/redirected to be used productively. Men tend to be better at this, although are far from perfect at it (they are human after all) women comparatively appear less disciplined in controlling their emotions and tend to have involuntary outbursts in far more marked frequency.

Emotion can be useful, but it is also far more volatile and harmful for the individual. Emotion is like nuclear energy, very powerful, but if you lose containment it fucks everything up. Logic is more akin to renewable energy, it tends not to harm anybody and if it did, it would do so very slowly over a long period of time, probably via the development of a non-pragmatic ideology which actualises a very specific chain of reasoning and creates a narrative around said reasoning to bring about a cult of logically demonstrable beliefs (one could argue that this is what the red pill philosophy is.)

The logical equivalent of depression is “analysis paralysis.” In so much that both cause you to do nothing or become unproductive. The equivalent of negative emotions would be faulty logic, but even if we look purely at positive emotions vs. productive/helpful logic, it becomes apparent that logic has far more application than emotion. Emotion’s highest function is creating a state of happiness. Logic’s highest function is understanding, discovery and systemising. Emotion can’t build civilization. It can give you a reason to build civilization, but it’s the wrong tool for creation, it can’t create anything alone, it needs logic to create anything worthwhile. I could go on for ages, there are a vast multitude of reasons for why logic is superior to emotion, and emotion is superior to logic in some ways too, but holistically speaking on the whole – logic wins. I think men personally prefer logic because they value reliability, stability and what is measurable. Men like to be able to understand and measure things. Men like problem solving. Women tend not to obsess or really even care so much about such things. The majority of women adopt a much simpler approach to life. If it feels good, it’s good (even if it’s morally bad or logically foolish) and if it feels bad, it’s bad (even if it’s morally or logically intelligent.) Again, morality is a system of rational psychological governance to instil order in a species that is made inherently chaotic due to the ferocity of emotion. As for rationalisation, that’s emotion in logic’s clothing. It’s pseudo-logic, emotion using logic to justify itself.

Empiricist philosophy (the basis for the scientific method) can elucidate and give a far more comprehensive view of the kind of ideas I’m trying to communicate. Check out this Wikipedia page:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Empiricism

[–]redeadxx[S] 0 points1 point  (4 children) | Copy Link

That's a great post. I guess I should have added to my post how you use specific emotions to your advantage, but you answered that as well, generally speaking. I agree that logic almost always trumps emotion for achieving goals, whatever they may be, and I liked the way you put it as " we are beings “tainted” with emotion". I'm sure we would advance much farther as a civilization if only logic was used. Thanks for the reply.

[–]IllimitableManillimitablemen.com 2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I guess I should have added to my post how you use specific emotions to your advantage

Oh definitely.

'If you want something really important to be done you must not merely satisfy the reason, you must move the heart also.' — Mahatma Gandhi

Unfortunately, logic and emotion are intertwined, any perceived separation of either is merely an illusion. You either have a strong emotional preference to have logic dictate your perception, so ironically have a strong emotion as a basis for rational preference, or logic is legitimately dwarfing emotion in your mind to the point that you believe emotion has no influence (even though it does ever so slightly.)

Channelling/redirecting emotion towards desired goals is more productive for the individual than the total annihilation of emotion itself. Ironically without emotion, you probably less desire, and without desire, you lose motivation. So emotion is incredibly important, it just needs keeping in check. I'll probably develop that comment, my thoughts here, and a few other thoughts pertaining to this topic into a blog post, so look out for that.

[–][deleted]  (2 children) | Copy Link

[permanently deleted]

[–]the_red_scimitar 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

If you mean "logic as people normally practice it", then yes, but "logic", especially when used by the scientifically trained, is a mathematical process that is anything BUT subjective. It is as objective as the commutative law of addition. But of course, the data and premises one uses in the objective process of logic may not be so objective.

Using the best available facts, and logic as a mathematics, there is nothing objective.

[–]dr_warlock 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

Emotion normally acts as a trigger for logic and gives logic an agenda or purpose.

Exactly. As a matter of fact, it's impossible to make decisions without them. They prompt the logical processing. Here's a science journal: "The role of emotion in decision-making: A cognitive neuroeconomic approach towards understanding sexual risk behavior"

http://www.j-biomed-inform.com/article/S1532-0464(06)00045-1/fulltext#Neuroscience, section "3.1. Neuroscience research on emotion"...

The basolateral nuclei of the amygdala are thought to attach emotional significance to a stimulus. The processed information from this region is subsequently sent to the cingulate gyrus, temporal pole, the medial orbitofrontal cortex, and the medial prefrontal cortex; all of which have been implicated in cognitive processing of emotional stimuli [67]. This region of the amygdala also projects to the hippocampal formation in the limbic system, which is thought to be important in learning the emotional significance of complex stimuli or the context in which emotionally charged stimuli are experienced. Another important projection of the basolateral amygdala neurons is to the central amygdala nuclei, which are believed to be important in mediating the behavioral responses to emotional stimuli.

In other words: receive stimuli => detect stimuli => process stimuli with limbic system, specifically the amygdala => attaches emotional significance to stimulus => information sent to upper regions of the brain like the pre-frontal cortex.

http://bigthink.com/experts-corner/decisions-are-emotional-not-logical-the-neuroscience-behind-decision-making

People who have had brain damage to the limbic system had a difficult to an impossible time making decisions as simple as deciding what to eat.

A few years ago, neuroscientist Antonio Damasio made a groundbreaking discovery. He studied people with damage in the part of the brain where emotions are generated. He found that they seemed normal, except that they were not able to feel emotions. But they all had something peculiar in common: they couldn’t make decisions. They could describe what they should be doing in logical terms, yet they found it very difficult to make even simple decisions, such as what to eat. Many decisions have pros and cons on both sides—shall I have the chicken or the turkey? With no rational way to decide, these test subjects were unable to arrive at a decision.


Antonio Damasio's definition of emotion...

Descartes Error by Antonio Damsio,

"I conceptualize the essence of feelings as something you and I can see through a window that opens directly onto a continuously updated image of the structure and state of our body... By and large, a feeling is the momentary "view" of a part of that body landscape." [Page xiv]

[–]MattBoBat 2 points3 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

I also believe that we all have the ability to harness, channel, or control any and of all of our emotions. I too find myself in the gym fantasizing about someone or something that makes me extremely angry and channel all of that hate into the weights which is an amazing feeling.

One thing I'd like to bring to light is the benefits of Meditation. Recently, I've started to "separate" myself from my feelings and emotions through meditation to better understand my own mind, my own feelings, and my own patterns of suffering that I bring upon myself with negative thought processes.

By separating myself I mean that I recognize the feeling or emotion the moment is happening, whether it be anger, fear, jealousy, etc. and I close my eyes and try to analyze what I am truly feeling. If I feel a wave of overwhelming stress I'll close my eyes and say to myself "This is what stress feels like. Feel your heartbeat rise. Feel the hotness in your head. Feel the feeling of wanting to jump out of your own skin." As I do this, I practice simple breathing techniques, such as inhaling and exhaling deeply through the nose, over and over again while I analyze the emotion or feeling.

Through this practice, you can start to learn the language of your feelings and emotions. Once you can speak the language of your feelings and emotions, you have total control of yourself, your reactions, and your mind.

[–]NitziNaturalRedGame.wordpress.com 0 points1 point  (1 child) | Copy Link

Many people have unchangeable mindsets about themselves. I tried my best not to have many mindsets.* To root my identity**, my self in as little as possible. And I find it incredibly easy to evoke certain emotions, to do away with emotions or addictions.

*I can't do that. I am sad. All that bullshit excuses people tell themselves that are holding themselves back.

** I am a democrat/liberal/conservative/pangender/indy music liking/bla bla bla all those bullshit labels people use to describe themselves.

On a side note, when my GF freaks out because she thinks I don't love her and starts sobbing and all that stuff, first I try to change her focus ti a happy memory, then I fix her shallow breathing and tell her to do deep breaths, then I take her for a walk. She is very emotional, can't control herself when she is in such an emotional state, she calls it the irrational phase. But I can make her control herself. I even told her about this before, but she would never think of doing it herself in that irrational phase but I can make her do it.

We could discuss about why it works but it has something to do with when you are happy you behave differently and you trick your body into thinking everything is ok. When you are sad your posture, breathing and focus sucks. Posture is slacking, breathing is shallow, focus is on something negative. Change that and you will be happier. It just works.

[–]cascadecombo 1 point2 points  (0 children) | Copy Link

** I am a democrat/liberal/conservative/pangender/indy music liking/bla bla bla all those bullshit labels people use to describe themselves.

I'm quite partial to having a certain mindset about myself, "I'm a person who gets things done" has never done me wrong.

[–]the_red_scimitar 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

I agree, and pretty much came to the same conclusions, although anger is not so much my issue. I've found displays of emotion reduce frame.

[–]bama79rolltide 0 points1 point  (0 children) | Copy Link

I believe if man can master his emotional state, he can conquer any form of adversity. Humility and introspection can help in these areas. Do not let anything else in this life define you, or your thoughts, except yourself.

You can kill a man, but you can't kill an idea.

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