The Emotions in the Modern World

about emotions

3/21/20242 min read

two person standing on gray tile paving
two person standing on gray tile paving

The Emotions in the Modern World

There was a recent incident that triggered a lot of thoughts in me regarding our emotions and how to deal with them. I was out with a friend who mentioned their emotional reactions to various matters, which shed light on things that had become unquestioned assumptions, causing us to cease debating or questioning them. This article isn't a denial of these emotions but rather an illumination of the true reasons behind this situation, as any change to any situation requires first understanding it accurately.

The Power of Emotions

There's a tendency to consider feelings as sacred, originating from truth and leading us to truth. It's a genuine law, almost considered truth itself in an era of deceptive appearances. How many tweets and social media posts gather significant interaction when they say to leave someone who makes you feel bad, embarrassed, or hurt, or who tries to burden you with responsibility? We've become unwilling to cooperate with anyone unless the deal is a win-win from the start and remains so. The idea that mistakes can happen not because of anyone's fault but due to differences in priorities and personal estimations, leading to inevitable clashes, has completely disappeared.

"The happy human mind functions like the mind of a person under the influence of drugs, structurally and functionally".

Then we come to positive emotions. There's now a frantic pursuit for anything that gives us even a simple good feeling, be it a surprise, a new experience, or a victory for ourselves. When we see someone happy, we stop thinking and calculating, considering them to have achieved the ultimate goal in their own way. However, positive feelings aren't always a good thing. There's nothing good about feelings that come from drugs, for example. Professor Jordan Peterson once said: "The happy human mind functions like the mind of a person under the influence of drugs, structurally and functionally." Because happiness gives a misleading idea that we are completely in control, overlooking the role of circumstances or luck in shaping the current situation.

There are many other assumptions, such as the tendency to consider our feelings as something not within our responsibility, manifested in laws that restrict freedom of expression, for example. And the tendency to consider one emotion nobler than another, like considering joy morally superior to sorrow, although they are essentially internal biological responses to external human conditions. Then, the person experiencing the bad feeling becomes wrong and deserving of that feeling. Don't you see that we disdain those who seem disappointed from experiencing a shock and tell them that they should have been more cautious and not trust anyone, but nobody tells them, for example, "Think well of others, trust them, because by doing so you give them the best chance to show the best of themselves"?

Conclusion

"Feelings are value-neutral".

We can summarize the article with a quote from Mark Manson, author of "The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck": "Feelings are value-neutral. I might be happy for a great reason or happy for a terrible reason, or I might be worried for a great reason or worried for a terrible reason. The value of emotions lies in their cause, not in themselves."

This awareness will reduce the severity of our judgment on situations, emotions, and incidents, and help us deal with them with greater rationality and responsibility, leading us to stability and a deeper understanding of ourselves.