The Futility of Logic!

How often have we heard the terms ‘How logical is that’, ‘Your logic is brilliant’, ‘Logically, it is true’. Yet, rewind the instances in your thought process and evaluate whether the logic convinced you or your sense of logic or thought process merged with the logic spoken by the other person.

In my experience, logic did not convince anybody at any point of time. As I read in a book the other day, only when the spoken word appeals to the other person’s self-interest, will or thought process, will logic be of any use. Logic primarily is to be used for rational beings, or inanimate objects, say with computers. Logic works perfectly in such a system because they are devoid of their own thought process and neither do they possess a sense of individuality and hence self-interest. Human beings are primarily emotional creatures. In an emotional atmosphere, there is no place for logic.

The religion/culture (or whatever you might want to call it) of almost every country doesn’t propagate selfless service. It propagates ‘you help people, there is heaven when you die’, ‘you get punyam’. The key word essentially is ‘you’. The futility of logic was perceived was by our ancestors thoroughly. They had to create an incentive, a self-interest motive to help the poor and the needy. ‘What is in it for me?’ primarily drives arguments and not logic. Innumerable examples to support the futility of logic. They are around us every day and every moment, from global to personal.

Logic states that pollution of air has to be reduced drastically to reduce global warming. Many countries signed the Kyoto Protocol. However, major pollution causing countries like the US have refused to sign Kyoto Protocol indicating that they do not believe these global warming reports. The most industrialized and a developed country speaking thus – logic, what is that?

Shilpa Shetty being kissed by Richard Gere in an AIDS campaign in India. As usual, a furore over this was telecast a million times in various 24×7 rubbish news channels. Shilpa Shetty enquires – ‘Why is the public raising such a furore? I do not see any logic in raising such petty issues to a national level’. The same lady was silent and probably approving with glee when the same public created a ‘star’ out of nowhere because of another worthless TV show ‘Big Brother’. Wasn’t logic working then?

Personal experiences are multiple. If my friend is faced with a particular situation, and I am offering a so-called ‘objective’ opinion, that is because of two reasons. The decision he might take will not affect me in any way and two, I get this exalted feeling of helping him out of a situation. All said and done however, my friend would act in a way that would maximize his self-interest and not any other way round. I have been on both sides of the fence multiple times and have observed that unless the logic serves our self-interest, the logic is bad/faulty/no use.

Rationalism, Objectivity are all things which can unanimously be applied to machines and computers, never to human beings. Next time someone says it is so logical, just take a step back and evaluate as to how it would benefit that particular person, because the way world is, ‘self-interest’ rules.

P.S – Books like ‘The Art of Negotiation’ and similar books have one baseline, serve (maximize) your self-interests, give and take very few. The blog is fundamentally against a core philosophy I strongly believe (tried it, with disastrous results :)), but then…‘Selfless’ uh…I hope to reach that state someday.

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5 comments so far

  1. Srinivas on

    One must by all means avoid taking any notice to these third rate skin flaunters masquerading as actresses…

    Damn them! the scum of India! The sooner they are dispatched to the acherontic realms, the better!

  2. HBK on

    I was reminded of the cartoon I read in Times of India today. “They made shilpa a cultural hero when she was abused in Big Brother. Now they have made her a cultural villian when she was kissed by Gere. What does this tell about our culture? We want our women to be cussed rather than kissed.

  3. Kiran on

    @Srinivas – Dude, I guess Wordsworth would be proud of your usage of ‘his’ ‘acherontic’ word so profoundly :)…third rate skin flaunters…hmm..so u think the first rate would be any better :D!!

    @HBK – Are you sure it was ‘Times of India’ that printed a LOGICAL cartoon…I need you to double check on that!! 🙂 I hope you have used ‘cussed’ as in proper English and not as in our usual slang!! 😀

  4. Srinivas on

    @Kiran
    Hahaha, first rate skin flaunters are.. err!! well, I dont know. 😉

    but I am sure you appreciate their frugality in covering themselves very well 🙂

  5. A Free Spirit on

    I have an idea for a new sort of biblical (and other religious text) hermeneutic: namely, identifying and extracting all of the passages that could involve the tinge of the writer’s or the religion’s self-interest. What sort of text would emerge? If you are interested, pls see my post at http://deligentia.wordpress.com/2009/11/01/self-interest-in-religion-and-the-related-conflicts-of-interest/


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