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Emotion And Decision Making Essay

2958 words - 12 pages

How Logic Relates to Emotion
The earlier schools of thought were seen to view emotion as a product of mental process that occurred as a result of stimulus but before the mind could have enough time to analyze the situation fully. They therefore treated emotion as based on intuition than logic. This view changed after. Daniel Schater, (2011) initiated this understanding after developing the two factor theory which viewed emotion as a product of an interplay between intuitive and logical processes. According to him, the physiological process occurs immediately after the perception of a stimulus. Thus the heart will start racing immediately a person sees a snake.
However, the feeling part of the emotion only occurs after the person has consciously analyzed the situation. Thus, fear comes as a result of cognitively analyzing and understanding the real danger that is posed by the snake. This theory would help explain the reason children do not fear snakes and will even play with them. If emotion was to be totally an intuitive occurrence, then intuition would make the child develop emotions of fear. Myers (2004) further supports this by relating emotions as products of a conscious judgment process. The person has to be aware that a situation deserves fear and acknowledge the same for the emotion of fear to manifest itself. This theory has been supported by Alter et al., (2007). In his view, there has to be active judgment and evaluation of the situation or the stimulus for the emotional process to be initiated.
All kinds of stimuli have to be perceived, and then processed, analyzed and after the judgment process, then emotion occurs. The same stimuli cause different kinds of emotions in the same person. The sight of a wild animal in a zoo will cause no fear in the zoo visitor; in fact it causes a feeling of pleasure. However the sight of the same animal outside the compound at home elicits alarm and fear. The two different emotions from perceiving the same stimulus in the same way (seeing a wild animal) come about due to the appraisal of the environment. After seeing the animal, the person is able to consciously analyze the environment in which this happens and then consciously or subconsciously decide on the emotion.
It is the development of the emotion that is argued as being spontaneous. This phase of the emotion is somehow difficult to control. But how would a person know what emotion to have? Is it possible? The opponents of the view that emotions are spontaneous argue that the occurrence of the emotion must have been sourced from the memory of similar stimulus either causing pleasure or displeasure. They argue that the person has to consciously compare the present situation to the past one to initiate emotion. The same argument has also been used to supported emotion as an intuitive process. The proponents of this view argue that at times the retrieval of the memories that lead to emotion occurs without involvement of the conscious mind...

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