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               What is Reason?

We  presume  our  sense  of reason to be the
premier survival asset of all time. And of course
it is.  But it has also become the  greatest  survival
threat we have ever  faced.  With  the  advent  of  the
technological revolution  we  face  pollution, resource
depletion, overpopulation, global climate destabilization 
and  nuclear annihilation.   We cannot grant  the  rational 
mind such laurels  as  attend  our  technical,  medical  and  
social accomplishments  without  equally  assigning  blame
for  almost   every   major   malady   in   the   human   catalog. 

Reason  is  a  double  edged   sword   that  we  must   soon  ad-
dress  or  perish  at our  own  hands  for  lack  of  self-restraint. 
This book suggests that the way we  view  reason  itself i s  part
of the problem in that we see no particular limit in its application.  

Our over-reaching  reason  is  best  examined  in  the  history  of
science. In cosmology, humans have always underestimated the complexity and diversity (the context) of the  uni-
verse by devising a model that is ostensibly complete under the data at hand.  But with each model  we  soon  dis-
covered that
the universe was both larger and more diverse than the prior model predicted. So we  devise  a  new
cosmology that adds one new feature, but again describes an idealized universe as it would  exist if the new  fea-
ture was the last feature we would ever encounter, with little or no regard to the fates of  all  prior  cosmologies.  
We continue to do so with the Big Bang which is uniformly believed to be the final feature of the entire universe
even if it turns out be infinitely large.  Realistically, we should devise our cosmologies under  the  presumption 
that they are only local descriptions of a much larger more diverse universe than we are able to determine just
like every cosmology ever devised.  But we don't like to admit that we can't  answer  everything,  now.  In fact,
we're loath to admit any limits to a rational perspective on just about anything.  
It's a collective psychological
failing that inhabits
every aspect of human  behavior  from  personal  interactions  to  international  politics.   

The God of Reason outlines a philosophy of necessary limits on human reasoning by formally presuming
a context of uncertainty surrounding all human endeavors. But perhaps the most important (and contro-
versial) aspect of the book is the contention that reason is but a valuable by product of a wider neuro-
logical context: our Instinct. The book lays out the argument that humans have vastly underestimated
the true source of our neurological mastery.  What we've barely begun to even  crudely  label  --our
senses, instincts, feelings, emotions, intuitions, imaginations, aspirations and divinations--   are
poised to emerge at the frontier of cognitive science as next stop on the path to self awareness.

                                                            (read excerpt from book)        
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