Difficulties of Introspection or Self-Consciousness

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Difficulties of introspection or self-consciousness. This paper is written by Saeed Haddad Many difficulties face the application of introspec¬tion. For this reason, it is being criticized by a big number of philosophers. •Objectivity is one of the basic characteristics of scientific observation. Since introspection is an activity of self-observation, it can always be subject to misjudgment. In introspection, one has to play the role of the arbiter and player at the same time. Modern psychology teaches us that a superiority complex prevents a person from observing his weaknesses, while an inferiority complex can do him quite the opposite effect. •The mildest criticism comes from psychologists who do not disregard the importance of introspec¬tion. They claim that since introspection requires conscious observation, only a person who is highly conscious can perform it. •The above limitation on the application of intro¬spection subjects it to a rather more difficult situ-ation: If introspection requires a highly conscious being, then how can it be applied in the study of children, animals, and extremely abnormal people? Certainly, these constitute very important subjects of modern psychological research, and at the same time, they lack consciousness. Children constitute the subject matter of child psychology, animals constitute the subject matter of animal psy¬chology, and abnormal people constitute the subject matter of different branches of psychology such as psychopathology and psychotherapy; all these branches of psychology dispense completely with introspection. •The field of consciousness is very narrow; it can focus on one object at a time. Here, one may ask, "How can a person observe his anger, and be angry at the same time? Observation and anger are certainly two different states that cannot coex¬ist. Is it not true that an angry person is told to count to ten before responding aggressively? What if he could? His anger would certainly dissolve by that...
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