Academic journal article Journal of Evolutionary Psychology

Challenge of Self Knowledge

Academic journal article Journal of Evolutionary Psychology

Challenge of Self Knowledge

Article excerpt

Because a person is a feeling being first and a thinking being second, it is important to know our feelings in order to understand our thoughts. How one thinks about oneself, therefore, also means how one feels. But feeling, like thinking, comes out of the experience one has had with oneself. It is our tendency to fall back on our earlier feelings, those that come from our distant past--our infant, childhood and adolescent years, for support.

Feeling is also a determiner of the kind of reason or logic one uses for self-defense. For instance, Bertrand Russell said: "It is feeling that determines the ends we shall pursue." This statement shows that feeling is a potent force in the art of thinking. It is feeling that directs thinking and gives it meaning. Feeling is what makes thinking a human experience.

To ask anyone to think about a subject is a sure way to lose his or her interest, for thinking implies work. It is not pleasant to think while one reads, for reading requires concentration and study. Sometimes to read is to escape from the act of thinking. Fantasy often comes into play, and fantasy while reading is not thinking. To believe on faith is not to think, and to doubt on faith is equally self-defeating, for they both indicate laziness.

To be modest serves the purpose of disguising the sensual.

What would God do without the Devil? How would we know evil without the good? How could we know and enjoy the good pleasures without having the sinful ones. How would we know sunlight without having experienced darkness? If we experienced only sunlight, we would not know what it was and would not have a name for it. We only know by contrast.

No person can deceive anyone more than he can deceive himself.

The psychiatrist, R.D. Laing, wrote that "Insanity--a perfectly rational adjustment to an insane world. …

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