A Quote by Kenneth Smith on philosophy, intellectualism, passion, rationality, emotion, apathy, opinion, truth, freedom, boredom, and defeatism

From its abstractionist posture, intellectualism typically conveys the impression that it is chiefly or only from passion that rationality can suffer; the folk-wisdom among rationalists is that emotion is the primary pollutant obstructing rational processes. But it is also, and far more pertinently in our age, from apathy that rationality suffers: when people do not care enough to think about received opinions, when they have no inherent drive to dissociate themselves from the dogmas and biases of their age, when their own freedom and the transcendence of the truth mean so little to them that they will not endure the painful task of self-reflection, when the very scale or profundity of problems the modern age has generated invite a defeatist attitude, then indeed it is truer than ever what Kierkegaard wrote a century and a half ago: "What the age needs is passion," not barbaric but sublimated energy. Hegel's truism about history--that "nothing great is ever accomplished without passion"--explains a great deal about our effete culture, our sterile education and stagnant politics. Like Marx and Nietzsche, Kierkegaard and Hegel wrote out of a prodigious reservoir of passion that did not in the least prevent them from being critical and rational. In our present era--wracked by a morbid boredom and an unshakeable conviction that there is nothing worth learning and preserving--I believe the lesson is clear. Difficult and risky as it may be, heat as well as light is called for.

Kenneth Smith

Contributed by: Dave

A Quote by Earon on ideology, reason, rationality, ideas, religion, politics, obsession, and zealotry

Ideology is the elevation of ideas beyond reason.

Earon Davis

Source: Earon's writings

Contributed by: Earon

A Quote by Kenneth Smith on philosophy, values, differences, oppositions, perspectives, issues, polemics, hierarchies, illusions, delusions, judgments, superiority, inferiority, rationality, objectivity, hierarchicalism, preferences, idiotia, aristeia, a

Values by their very nature tend to seed differences and oppositions, i.e. to make it possible for us to detect and appreciate the various perspectives from which issues may be seen; even though we (by a profound self-misconception) may find this psychologically and socially unpleasant, for the sake of value-intelligence we must learn to live and to thrive AMIDST such polemics, "in medias res," in utmost self-uncertainty and insecurity. Values, also by their inherent character and natural function, tend to form hierarchies; and even though our egos and appetites and illusions and delusions may resent being afflicted with judgments of rank and superiority/inferiority, again for the sake of connoisseurial and wisdom-seeking value-intelligence we have to stretch and traumatize our minds aristically to understand the rationality and objectivity of such intrinsic hierarchicalism, valid and authoritative over and beyond all that we may have cultivated as our idiosyncratic and subjectivist preferences (idiotia). Aristeia is naturally ingrained in the very nature of values; values are naturally ingrained in the very character and laws of nature.

Kenneth Smith

Contributed by: Dave

A Quote by Kenneth Smith on philosophy, culture, religion, spirituality, happiness, iconoclasm, rationality, and masochism

Bear in mind that everything that traditionally passed as "religion" would modernly be interpreted as a form of sadism or masochism, i.e. humans deliberately spoiling their own and others' this-worldly happiness by taking a more cosmic or eternalist perspective on things; and the same holds true with the illusion- and delusion-bursting iconoclastics of philosophy, education, culture, etc. Insofar as no kind of higher culture takes root and grows except by rupturing the lower "certainties" (dogmatics, faith, visceral tribalisms, etc.) that necessarily militate against such insights, all spirituality and rationality seem like forms of self-immiseration to idiotes.

Kenneth Smith

Contributed by: Dave

A Quote by Kenneth Smith on philiosophy, environment, rationality, humanity, thinking, banauseia, character, and delusions

No one can look either our planet or our societies in the face and imagine humans are in any respect as rational as they have been mass-bamboozled into believing that they are. All the abstractions in terms of which we "think" about ourselves are free-floating and autonomous conformisms and orthodoxies, irrationalist self-complacencies and self-flattery that manifest the disconnectivity and dissociativity typifying banauseia; we will continue past the several points-of-no-return imagining in abstracto that, of course, we must necessarily possess the faculties to reverse any mistaken policies and cure any destruction. But the problem does not lie ultimately anywhere outside our own intrinsic and self-biased idiotia, our primordial and primally blind characters. To have a character blithely oblivious to the nature and concept of one's character is the doom of the vast majority of "mankind."

Kenneth Smith

Contributed by: Dave

A Quote by Earon on religion, spirituality, spiritual, faith, rational, rationality, peril, unconscious, mental, emotional, and intellect

Spirituality resides in the unconscious mind, or heart.  Rationality resides in the conscious mind, or intellect.  Religion is an attempt to join the two powerful forces and is therefore fraught with peril.

Earon Davis

Source: Earon Davis

Contributed by: Earon

A Quote by Lin Yutang on superiority, heart, rationality, perfection, weakness, and smoking

I am willing to allow that smoking is a moral weakness, but on the other hand, we must beware of the man without weaknesses. He is not to be trusted. He is apt to be always sober and he cannot make a single mistake. His habits are likely to be regular, his existence more mechanical and his head always maintains its supremacy over his heart. Much as I like reasonable persons, I hate completely rational beings.

Lin Yutang (1895 - 1976)

Source: The Importance Of Living

Contributed by: Richard

A Quote by Robert Nozick on philosophy, argument, and rationality

The terminology of philosophical art is coercive: arguments are powerful and best when they are knockdown, arguments force you to a conclusion, if you believe the premises you have to or must believe the conclusion, some arguments do not carry much punch, and so forth.  A philosophical argument is an attempt to get someone to believe something, whether he wants to believe it or not.  A successful philosophical argument, a strong argument, forces someone to a belief.

Though philosophy is carried on as a coercive activity, the penalty philosophers wield is, after all, rather weak.  If the other person is willing to bear the label of "irrational" or "having the worse arguments," he can skip away happily maintaining his previous belief.

Robert Nozick

Source: Philosophical Explanations, Pages: 4

Contributed by: philosojerk

A Quote by Bertrand Arthur William Russell on humanity, sin, wickedness, foolishness, set it right, and rationality

No man treats a motorcar as foolishly as he treats another human being. When the car will not go, he does not attribute its annoying behavior to sin; he does not say, 'You are a wicked motorcar, and I shall not give you any more petrol until you go.' He attempts to find out what is wrong and to set it right.

Bertrand Russell (1872 - 1970)

Contributed by: Julianne

A Quote by Avram Noam Chomsky on rationality and chomsky

[...] many scientists, not too long ago, took an active part in the lively working class culture of the day, seeking to compensate for the class character of the cultural institutions through programs of workers' education, or by writing books on mathematics, science, and other topics for the general public. ... It strikes me as remarkable that their left counterparts today should seek to deprive oppressed people not only of the joys of understanding and insight, but also of tools of emancipation, informing us that the "project of the Enlightenment" is dead, that we must abandon the "illusions" of science and rationality--a message that will gladden the hearts of the powerful, delighted to monopolize these instruments for their own use.

Noam Chomsky (1928 -)

Source: http://www.chomsky.info/articles/1995----02.htm

Contributed by: aarons

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