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Overcoming the Death of Reason

In this article, I plan to discuss the apparent death of reason in people who value their emotions and feelings over rational thought. Within context of this article, I also will access and display my personal experience to support my opinion that meditation is very useful for integrating rational thought with the emotions and feelings that we have. By integrating reason with feelings, it is possible to maintain emotional control without losing it. All it begins with is one breath...

Throughout my life, I have found the death of reason to be interesting because of the social repercussions. When a person has an emotional reaction, it appears as though all reason has left him. If I respond with logic and reason to his emotional response, he insists of staying angry and excited. Thus, it's wise to walk away from a person who is killing his ability to reason by remaining in a state of extreme excitement.

While walking away sounds cowardly, it is actually the safest thing to do when a person is overcome by their emotions. For misery loves the company of dreadfully depressing states of mind. Every year, most people suffer because they actually value their feelings over their ability to reason. When they think about it, their solidify their feelings into emotions, and thus hijack their ability to reason in a holistic manner which could greatly improve not only their life but also their mind.

When I was a child, I lacked the ability to coherently apply reason to cool my anger, moderate dislike, and handle my fears. A good example which comes to mind was my fear of caterpillars. I remember one day disturbing a bunch of caterpillars on a bush which reacted to disturbing their meal but rising up on their hind legs and waving their bodies. It was only years later, when I learned that caterpillars do this to scare off predators. In my child's mind, it was not normal for small bugs to move like that.

So when a few years later, when my brother pushed me into a bush, I freaked out. While I am unsure of what exactly I'd exclaimed, it might go like this: "Ahhh, the caterpillars are gonna eat me! Augh!!!" In response to my behavior, my brother could only laugh. If I had snapped out of it at this point, I would have slugged him on the arm, telling him "don't laugh at me!"

However, I am an adult now, and the above scene brings a smile of amusement to my face. For the reasonal mind I possess has lost most of the ready ability to emotional respond to a situation. When I do respond, it's of amusement rather than the appropriate emotion that is expected in a given situation. Yet this annoys people who expect consistency to match the appropriate emotion in a given scenario.

However, I have also learned to not react strongly to any given emotion. Even though I might feel fear in my heart, my mind is saying one thing: "I fear no evil."

How is this possible? Well, I have a secret weapon to maintain impulse control, which is nedded in today's fast-paced world. It is called meditation. Ancients have called it the true form of mind control, thus implying that brainwashing and other forms of mind control are myths of the modern age which show that the fear of being controlled by other people is a human fear.

However, I digress.

How does meditation lead to control of my mind? It begins with the breath, and ends when you mind is calm, so calm you can see with the clarity of reason that allowing your emotions to cloud your reason, it's as though you lose all ability to reason.

Who wants that in the real world? It makes you look immature when you get angry and rage just because the coffee is too hot. It is safer to wait until you think the coffee is cool enough to drink, or even better, blow on the surface of the drink before drinking. In doing so, you actually perform a shortened version of meditation. Usually the result of taking time to slowly drink coffee is the lack of burns in your mouth and on your lips. You also save your esophagus.

Thus, it's possible with meditation on a large scale to save your life from the death of reason.

Meditation is not about sitting on your ass and staring at your navel. If you want to do this more effectively, buy a wall mirror and sit in front of it. Seriously though, meditation is more than just sitting. It is not a navel-gazing, but it is the mind gazing at the monkey and throwing it bananas to slow its dance.

How then does meditation save your life? Well, when reason trumps emotions, you tend to think more clearly. Believe me when I say meditation leads to the calm mind of reason and promote the clarity of mind that can kill emotions' destructive rampage in the mind. It can also lead to quicker and more reasonable responses to danger than to jump up in a movie theatre crying "Fire."

So the next time you feel like doing just that, don't panic. Instead, take a deep breath and see if you can smell smoke.

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