Skip to main content

In Defence Of Reason

I have often wondered why people object so often to the use of sense and reason. Many people when even asked this question will probably claim that yes, they do value rationality and reason. But dig a little deeper and I often find contradictions. 

Take religion, why that almost always requires a suspension of reason and intellect. Oh! if I had a nickel for every time I've heard the sentence 'You have to believe'. One of the more interesting arguments I have come across to prove the existence of God is that of the empty room. It goes something like this. You are in an darkened room. There is another person inside with you whom you cannot see because it is dark. Does that imply that the person is non-existent? Surely not. Invisibility does not imply non-existence of course. Presto! God does exist. Not so fast. The invisible and the non existent do look awfully similar. How do you really know?

Next up on the table, culture & traditions. Both are evolutionary manifestations of changing societies. They are ever changing from one generation to the next, they are dynamic. Yet strangely enough people insist that their traditions have been carried on for years and will be continued as such even if there is no reason to do so in the present. So, is culture a static phenomenon then? Surely not. No rational person can say that he/she follows all those traditions that their parents/grandparents followed decades ago. Reason dictates that culture evolves to accommodate change and progress. But then, when is Man ever reasonable?

One is tempted to define man as a rational animal who always loses his temper when he is called upon to act in accordance with the dictates of reason. - Oscar Wilde
Well said!

And the saga continues!

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Why Don’t We Raise Our Sons like We Do Our Daughters?

This post originally appeard in Women's Web: Why Don’t We Raise Our Sons like We Do Our Daughters?

One of the hot button topics right now in Indian media is the safety of women – or rather how our country doesn't really care about half its population. From rape, sexual assault, harassment (in streets, public transport, nearly every public place) to violence perpetrated on women, Indians are finally getting around to discussing taboo topics.
One refrain that caught my eye throughout these debates – both online and off – is the fact that the reaction of the majority of Indians is the same: girls should stay at home, not go out after dark, dress appropriately and so on if they want to stay safe. No one seems to bat an eyelid when laying down these precautions for women. Except that the reality is women would be far safer if all the men simply DID NOT RAPE or HARASS any person that looks remotely female. No one has to stay at home and become a hermit! That got me thinking further. F…