A life-changing entheogenic experience in conjunction with a class on the relationship between cognition and emotion has led to an amazing realisation: emotions are meant to guide us. As a teenager, I considered robots to be superior due to their lack of emotions and still maintain little respect for those for whom feelz take precedence over realz. I was in good company too, since many of the great thinkers thought that emotions corrupt reason and how it’s best to make decisions while one is in a neutral state. Emotions also predate cognition in the sense that the brain structures that support emotions evolved before those for analytical thinking. Animals also have emotions, but they can’t think as well as we can, so this also contributes to the bad reputation that emotions can sometimes have. We humans like to think of ourselves as being above all this animalistic stuff, but we aren’t robots yet and if you ask me, ALWAYS be suspicious of anyone or any ideology that expects you to repress your animal side.
That being said, I want to stress that emotions are not outdated relics/behavioural fossils that simply we have to put up with. My goal with this article is to enlighten you with when and how emotions can help and hinder decision-making.