/What Is Rational Definition

What Is Rational Definition

They say that someone is rational when they are able to think clearly and make decisions and judgments based on reason rather than emotions. Some theorists have responded to these thought experiments by distinguishing normativity and responsibility. [39] From this point of view, criticism of irrational behaviour, such as the doctor`s prescription of drug B, implies a negative assessment of the agent in terms of liability, but is silent on normative issues. In a competency-based assessment that defines rationality in terms of the ability to respond to reasons, such behavior can be understood as a failure to address a person`s competence. But sometimes we are lucky and succeed in the normative dimension, although we are not competent, that is, rational, because we are irresponsible. [39] [45] The reverse can also be the case: bad luck can lead to failure despite responsible and competent performance. This explains how rationality and normativity can collapse despite our practice of criticizing irrationality. [39] [46] The most influential distinction is between theoretical or epistemic rationality and practical rationality. Its theoretical side concerns the rationality of beliefs: whether it is rational to cling to a particular belief and how sure one should be of it. Practical rationality, on the other hand, concerns the rationality of actions, intentions and decisions. [8] [13] [57] [28] This corresponds to the distinction between theoretical and practical thinking: theoretical thinking attempts to judge whether the agent should change his beliefs, while practical thinking tries to judge whether the agent should change his plans and intentions. [13] [57] [28] The fact that the virus is still alive has perpetuated many rational and irrational safety concerns about its use. In some cases, the requirements of practical and theoretical rationality are in contradiction with each other.

For example, the practical reason for loyalty to one`s child may require the belief that the child is innocent, while evidence linking the child to the crime may require a belief in his guilt on a theoretical level. [13] [69] According to A. C. Grayling, rationality must be „independent of emotions, personal feelings, or any type of instinct.” [102] Some findings in cognitive science and neuroscience show that no human has ever met this criterion, except perhaps a person without emotional feelings, for example, a person with a massively damaged amygdala or severe psychopathy. Therefore, such an idealized form of rationality is best illustrated by computers rather than humans. However, scientists can productively invoke idealization as a point of reference. [ref. needed] In his book The Edge of Reason: A Rational Skeptic in an Irrational World, British philosopher Julian Baggini attempts to debunk myths about reason (for example, that it is „purely objective and requires no subjective judgment”). [103] Rationality is generally understood as conservative in the sense that rational actors do not start from scratch, but already have many beliefs and intentions. Thinking takes place in the context of these pre-existing mental states and tries to improve them. In this way, the original beliefs and intentions are privileged: they are kept unless there is reason to doubt them. Some forms of epistemic fundamentalism reject this approach.

According to them, the entire belief system must be justified by obvious beliefs. Examples of such obvious beliefs can be direct experience as well as simple logical and mathematical axioms. [13] [55] [56] For various other practical phenomena, there is no clear consensus as to whether or not they belong to this domain. For example, in terms of the rationality of desires, two important theories are proceduralism and substantivism. According to the procedure, there is an important distinction between instrumental and non-instrumental desires. A desire is instrumental if its fulfillment serves as a means of satisfying another desire. [66] [13] [7] For example, Jack is sick and wants to take medication to recover. In this case, the desire to take the drug is instrumental, as it serves only as a means to Jack`s non-instrumental desire to heal. Procedural and substantive generally agree that a person can be irrational if he has no instrumental desire, even if he has the corresponding non-instrumental desire and is aware that it acts as a means. Procedural experts believe that this is the only way a wish can be irrational. Nouns, on the other hand, allow non-instrumental desires to be irrational.

In this regard, a name might argue that it would be irrational for Jack to lack his non-instrumental desire to be healthy. [8] [66] [7] Similar debates focus on the rationality of emotions. [7] An influential competitor of responsiveness to reason understands rationality as inner coherence. [16] [6] From this point of view, a person is rational to the extent that his mental states and actions are consistent with each other. [16] [6] There are different versions of this approach, which differ in how they understand consistency and the rules of consistency they propose. [8] [21] [2] A general distinction in this regard is between negative and positive consistency. [13] [23] Negative coherence is an indisputable aspect of most of these theories: it requires the absence of contradictions and inconsistencies. This means that the mental states of the agent do not collide with each other. In some cases, the inconsistencies are quite obvious, such as when a person believes it will rain tomorrow and it won`t rain tomorrow. In complex cases, inconsistencies can be difficult to detect, for example, when a person believes in the axioms of Euclidean geometry and is convinced that it is possible to square the circle. Positive coherence refers to the support that different mental states provide to each other.

For example, there is a positive consistency between the belief that there are eight planets in the solar system and the belief that there are fewer than ten planets in the solar system: the previous belief implies the latter belief. Other types of support through positive coherence are explanatory and causal relationships. [13] [23] The pleasures of life (rational pleasures I hope) have always had an attraction to me. There is much debate about the essential characteristics common to all forms of rationality. According to rational reactivity reports, being rational means responding to reasons. For example, dark clouds are a reason to take an umbrella, which is why it is rational for an agent to do so in response. A major competitor to this approach is consistency-based accounts, which define rationality as internal consistency between the agent`s mental states. In this regard, many rules of consistency have been proposed, for example, that one should not have conflicting beliefs or that one should intend to do something if one believes that one should. Goal-oriented relationships characterize rationality in terms of goals, such as the acquisition of truth in the case of theoretical rationality. Internalists believe that rationality depends only on the mind of the person. Externalists claim that external factors may also be relevant. Debates about the normativity of rationality deal with the question of whether one should always be rational.

Another discussion is whether rationality requires all beliefs to be verified from the ground up, rather than trusting pre-existing beliefs. Different types of rationality are discussed in the scientific literature. The most influential distinction is between theoretical and practical rationality. Theoretical rationality concerns the rationality of beliefs. Rational beliefs are based on evidence that supports them. Practical rationality refers mainly to actions. These include certain mental states and events that precede actions, such as intentions and decisions. In some cases, the two may conflict with each other, as if practical rationality requires one to adopt an irrational belief. Another distinction is between ideal rationality, which requires rational actors to obey all the laws and implications of logic, and limited rationality, which takes into account that this is not always possible because the computing power of the human mind is too limited.

Most academic discussions focus on the rationality of individuals. This contrasts with social or collective rationality, which refers to collectives and their group beliefs and decisions. It is sometimes claimed that theoretical rationality aims at truth, while practical rationality aims at the good. [62] According to John Searle, the difference can be expressed in terms of the „direction of adjustment.” [7] [67] [68] From this point of view, theoretical rationality concerns the way in which the mind corresponds to the world by representing it.