Saturday, October 06, 2018

Basic idea of human emotions

Humans are the most emotional animals on earth. Almost every aspect of human cognition, behavior, and social organization is driven by emotions.

In written English, the word “emotion” and its derivatives have passed through identifiable stages. In 17th and 18th centuries, written language remained faithful to the Latin derivation of emotion – namely ‘emovere, “to move away from.”

By the late 19th century, it was fashionable to distinguish emotion from cognition and volition. In some theories of the mind, emotion, cognition and volition were regarded as three fundamental faculties. According to the distinguished philosopher Richard Wollheim, an emotion is an extended mental episode that originates when events in the world frustrate or satisfy a pre-existing desire.

Emotions are the force behind social commitments to others in face-to-face interactions and groups. But they are much more; they are also the driving force responsible for the formation of social structures, and conversely, they are the fuel driving collective actions that tear down social structures and transform cultures.

Emotion came to be regarded as distinct from cognition (reasoning) and volition (willing). We retain the vestiges of this analysis in our present day conception of emotion: emotion is commonly thought to be the obverse of reason, a separate faculty, usually one to be guarded lest it interfere with the rational aspects of the mind and thereby subvert motivation or values.

There are dozens of emotions. They include anger, contempt, enthusiasm, envy, fear, frustration, disappointment, embarrassment, disgust, happiness, hate, hope, jealousy, joy, love, pride, surprise, and sadness. There have been numerous research efforts to limit and define the dozens of emotions into a fundamental or basic set of emotions.
Basic idea of human emotions
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