Quote of the Day – Passion and Rational Conviction

Dave Jilk, or as I like to call him, Professor Jilk, since he’s a professor in my “life university,” always provokes. I like emailing him tough issues and asking him to simply react, which he does, and it stimulates additional thinking.

He just sent me this very interesting quote by Bertrand Russell:

“When there are rational grounds for an opinion, people are content to set them forth and wait for them to operate. In such cases, people do not hold their opinions with passion; they hold them calmly, and set forth their reasons quietly. The opinions that are held with passion are always those for which no good ground exists; indeed, the passion is the measure of the holder’s lack of rational conviction.”

As Dave paraphrases in the comment to my post on certainty, “He actually says that the amount of passion involved in a belief is a MEASURE of the lack of rational basis for the belief.”

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