When should we discard explanations that are intuitively appealing? Intuition and reasoning together lead the individual to personal truths. Intuition is man’s personal experience with knowledge, derived from the world order around him and his coming to know explanations to be true. Is intuition the most beneficial method of acquiring knowledge? Man’s instincts instruct him on how to feel towards an idea or concept, and whether to hold it to be true. However, these natural responses do not characterize the full scope of his understanding of the world. Rational knowledge helps man become more aware of the objects and events around him, and to understand the underlying reality of and interaction with the world. What, then, becomes the role of reason in these explanations? In practice then it would seem that, at best, reason is a means of preserving truth in the sense that when we begin with truth, then we will end with a truth. Fallacies arise with sources of reasoning, suggesting that we cannot always rely on reason to give us knowledge either. How does the conflict between intuition and reason present itself in science and ethics? Can this conflict be settled and can each part be given equal merit? Reconciliation between both areas of knowledge can occur when explanations that are intuitively appealing compel enough reasoning to offer a level of truth to the individual. Intuition should first attract an individual to a belief, and then serve as a launching pad from which reason brings out a justification and a degree of truth. It could be argued that all human knowledge stems from intuition. Man relies on his intuition to obtain and develop certain beliefs from his experience in a world that demands reasoning. Intuition helps us develop value judgments about the knowledge we choose to make our own, of which we go on to justify and support. John Sterling tells us that “Instinct is intelligence incapable of self-consciousness.” With this statement, Sterling...
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