Reply To: What Are Emotions?

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Animal
Participant
  • Type: SeFi
  • Development: lll-
  • Attitude: Unseelie

Yet we need not mystify emotions. We can both see emotions as entirely mechanical processes while honoring their sophistication as our first approximation of how-to-be in this reality, and also not use them as exclusively the only source we rely on for our processing and decision-making.

It may be too simple to say we  “need not” mystify emotions. What would happen if all mysticism was removed from emotion?

I’m not a philosopher or a biologist, but from the little understanding I have, I can use some examples – there are ‘lust chemicals’ released when we feel attraction to a person, but the lust chemicals run out after two years, to be replaced by a different chemical that brings us comfort.  Lust chemicals run out after two years because that’s the time it takes for a couple to have a baby and for the man to protect the woman while she nurses the baby to health.  At that point we may have the comfort chemicals with our partner , but on a purely chemical level, we could just as easily run off with someone else who arouses lust.  However, this would not be as good for a baby, at least in modern society. Perhaps in tribal society it’s completely irrelevant because the adults nurture & provide for all the children and that’s that.   But is it good for the soul? Does this lifestyle teach us what long-term relationships teach us?  What would happen to art, music, language, inspiration – if there was no mysticism around your obsession with “The One,” no highly personal romantic story around your relationship?

And the same goes for all relationships. Friendships, parents… we have some mystical associations with other people and events in our lives, and these are the types of experiences that drive us to become more than we are.

Even “special snowflake syndrome” is a biological imperative. If you didn’t love & care for your own special offspring more than the next kid (at least in this society), there would be chaos. If you don’t have a sense of your own worth and specialness, you don’t compete, take on big projects and fight through hardship to realize your visions.

Mysticism around emotions  evolved for a reason, just as much as emotions did, and the aim to ‘dismantle it’ would never work. There’s a reason it’s there, a reason it’s part of our emotional structure no matter who we are.  The T “ego” may aim to be sober about their emotions, yet this aim in itself is not completely sober, because emotions by their very nature are designed to inspire us due to their profundity.

I do agree that it’s important to balance emotions with reason, and not to be run by ‘pure emotion,’ but I also wonder – who does this?  How many people are really run by pure emotion?  I’ve never met anyone who says it’s  a good idea to be lost in emotion with no reason at all; yet I meet people constantly who talk about others getting lost in emotion.

I think what they’re talking about is being lost in overthinking and ego.  Emotion on its own does not “take someone over” and drown out their reason because emotion  is always in flux.  Rather, it would be ego which does this, and ego is a combination of emotions & beliefs, ideas.  Ego is a thought, rather than  purely an emotion, although it is a fixated thought that is motivated by biological imperatives including the need to see ourselves as special.

So what would really be the result of being sober about emotion, in creatures who are designed to be inspired by emotion, to love, to do ‘crazy things’ to protect their loved ones and to actualize their visions? At that point are we even dealing with humans anymore, or are we designing some otherworldly creature without the same biology?

In sum, I want to know what would be lost and what would be gained by the approach of having an entire human society which removes the mysticism from emotions and views them purely as mechanics. Realistically.

  • This reply was modified 1 year, 8 months ago by Animal.
  • This reply was modified 1 year, 8 months ago by Animal.

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