It may be helpful here to have the Model of the Mind open for reference whilst reading this definition.
The Reasoning function is a precursor to the actual decision making process. It uses Memory to work out what might be a reasonable course of action given the Perceptions. If Memory is good, well-structured and logical, the Reasoning process can produce good results. If our Learning function has been poor, then the Memory database will be poor and ‘Reasoning’ will produce rubbish.
It is important to give some thought to how Reasoning works, because the suppression or overload of the function of Reason is one of the keys to spiritual experience. You can’t suppress or overload a function unless you know what it is you are suppressing or overloading!
The main inputs to the reasoning process are the Perceptions and Memory. The Reasoning process extracts the Perceptions on which it has to act – the Threats and the Opportunities. It uses information on what our Objectives are in order to do this, our Desires and our Obligations as well as the Emotions that go with a Perception. And it then works out a course of action that it thinks might match the requirements using our Memory.
So, Reasoning works using our mental model – our Memory. It traverses the Database of facts deducing information, or it uses the Learnt function models – heuristical or otherwise - to try to deduce information from the information we already have in Memory supplemented by any extra stuff we get from our Perceptions.
What is output is information which can be used to make a decision, decide a course of action.
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- Agassiz, Louis – Essay on Classification – The unity of plan in otherwise highly diversified types
- Al-Ghazzali - The Alchemy of Happiness - 03 Knowledge of the Self
- Aristotle - De Anima - Perceptions and the soul
- Aristotle - History of Animals - Tree of Life
- Aristotle - On Sleep and Wakefulness - Dreams
- Asvaghosha - The Awakening of Faith in the Mahayana - Spiritual interactions
- Avicenna - The Canon of Medicine - The unbalanced mind
- Bergson, Henri - Matter and Memory - Memory and Perception
- Bohr, Niels - A Quote
- Cartwright, Sir Fairfax Leighton - The Mystic Rose - The Gardeners
- Chesterton, G K - Orthodoxy - Imagination does not breed insanity
- Chesterton, G K - Orthodoxy - Reason is itself a matter of faith
- Chesterton, G K - Orthodoxy - What drives change
- Crowley, Aleister - Book of Lies - Windlestraws
- Damasio, Professor Antonio - Reason and emotion
- Darwin, Charles - Dr W.Y. Evans-Wentz on Darwin's evolutionary theory
- De Morgan, Augustus - Formal Logic – Necessary reasoning
- Democritus - Galenus Diels fr 125
- Ficino, Marsilio - Commentary on Plato’s Timaeus - On the good health and poor health of the body and the soul
- Ficino, Marsilio – Selected Letters - From a letter to Francesco Tedaldi
- Ficino, Marsilio – Selected Letters - From a letter to Giovanni Nesi, the passions
- Frost, Robert - We disparage reason
- Goya, Francisco - The sleep of reason produces monsters
- Hadamard, Jacques - Fishing in the waters of ideas
- Hegel - Philosophy of Mind – Reason
- Hesiod - Theogony - 04 The emotions
- Hume, David - Animals have similar functions to humans
- Hume, David - Decision making and what influences the Will
- Jili, Abd al-Karim - Al-Kahf wa al-raqim - 060 Section 5
- Kant, Immanuel - Critique of Pure Reason - Cause effect chains and heuristics
- Kant, Immanuel - Critique of Pure Reason - Heuristics and the systems of the universes
- Kant, Immanuel - Dreams of a Spirit Seer - 01 Chapter One
- Kant, Immanuel - Dreams of a Spirit Seer - 03 Chapter One
- Kant, Immanuel - Quotes - Where is the soul?
- Koestler, Arthur - Janus - The nature of genius
- Koestler, Arthur - Misc. Quote - The dangers of reason
- Leibniz - The Monadology - 04
- Leibniz - The Monadology - 05
- Neumann, John von - The design for a computer
- Nicholle, Charles - The nature of blue sky thinking
- Plotinus - The Enneads - The use and act of Reason is a characteristic Act of the Soul
- Romance of the Rose - Meeting lady Reason
- Rumi - The Book of Love - The way the soul is with the senses
- Saint Thomas Aquinas - On the dangers of spiritual experience
- Schopenhauer, Arthur - The World as Will and Idea - The Innocence of plants
- Shabistari, Mahmud - The Gulshan-i raz - All of the world has appeared by His Light
- Stockham, Alice Bunker - Karezza - On the spirit and the soul
- Swedenborg, Emanuel - The Infinite - Aggregates
- The Cloud of unknowing