The Echoes of the Mind (52) Reason


All our knowledge begins with the senses, proceeds then to the understanding, and ends with reason. There is nothing higher than reason. ~ Immanuel Kant

Reason is the capacity for, or the process of, making sense of experience and applying logic. Logic is the process of chaining symbols together – from one or more premises to a conclusion – in a way that the linkages are agreeable.

The sole object of logic is the guidance of one’s own thoughts. ~ John Stuart Mill

The application of reason is rationality. The ostensible employment of reason is judgment, and from that, making decisions.

Inference is the process of drawing conclusions from given premises by logical means. ~ Avron Douglis

Reason is often a social phenomenon, where arguments are made, and the validation of conclusions is consensual. What makes sense to one person may be considered irrational by others. Of course, reasoning is often used to convince oneself of something before proceeding to prove by experience a conclusion’s correctness, and thereby the rationale behind it.

Reason is not a search for truth, but instead a quest for a reason to think, believe, or behave a certain way. Rationality seeks a rationale.

The need of reason is not inspired by the quest for truth, but by the quest for meaning. ~ American theorist Hannah Arendt

Reasoning is typically bifurcated into deduction and induction, which come to conclusions via opposite routes.

The two operations of our understanding, intuition and deduction, on which alone we must rely in the acquisition of knowledge. ~ René Descartes