Thursday, May 28, 2009


Human beings need to reason together in order to carry on decent dealings with each other. Logical thinking and argumentation are one means by which we exercise our mutual transactions, but our reasoning also involves our emotions, since “the heart has its reasons that reason [i.e. logic] knows not of,” as Pascal observed.

Feelings and intuitions are as important as syllogisms when we negotiate among ourselves, working to find understanding and accord. Neither proof nor passion but persuasion is the goal of our negotiations. We aim to be rationally persuaded as to what is best for all parties. The good sense that emerges from such reasoning is a function of both logical sense and emotional sensibility conjoining to that end.