What is Reason: Definition and 289 Discussions

Reason is the capacity of consciously applying logic to seek truth and draw conclusions from new or existing information. It is closely associated with such characteristically human activities as philosophy, science, language, mathematics, and art, and is normally considered to be a distinguishing ability possessed by humans. Reason is sometimes referred to as rationality.Reasoning is associated with the acts of thinking and cognition, and involves using one's intellect. The field of logic studies the ways in which humans can use formal reasoning to produce logically valid arguments. Reasoning may be subdivided into forms of logical reasoning, such as: deductive reasoning, inductive reasoning, and abductive reasoning. Aristotle drew a distinction between logical discursive reasoning (reason proper), and intuitive reasoning, in which the reasoning process through intuition—however valid—may tend toward the personal and the subjectively opaque. In some social and political settings logical and intuitive modes of reasoning may clash, while in other contexts intuition and formal reason are seen as complementary rather than adversarial. For example, in mathematics, intuition is often necessary for the creative processes involved with arriving at a formal proof, arguably the most difficult of formal reasoning tasks.
Reasoning, like habit or intuition, is one of the ways by which thinking moves from one idea to a related idea. For example, reasoning is the means by which rational individuals understand sensory information from their environments, or conceptualize abstract dichotomies such as cause and effect, truth and falsehood, or ideas regarding notions of good or evil. Reasoning, as a part of executive decision making, is also closely identified with the ability to self-consciously change, in terms of goals, beliefs, attitudes, traditions, and institutions, and therefore with the capacity for freedom and self-determination.In contrast to the use of "reason" as an abstract noun, a reason is a consideration given which either explains or justifies events, phenomena, or behavior. Reasons justify decisions, reasons support explanations of natural phenomena; reasons can be given to explain the actions (conduct) of individuals.
Using reason, or reasoning, can also be described more plainly as providing good, or the best, reasons. For example, when evaluating a moral decision, "morality is, at the very least, the effort to guide one's conduct by reason—that is, doing what there are the best reasons for doing—while giving equal [and impartial] weight to the interests of all those affected by what one does."Psychologists and cognitive scientists have attempted to study and explain how people reason, e.g. which cognitive and neural processes are engaged, and how cultural factors affect the inferences that people draw. The field of automated reasoning studies how reasoning may or may not be modeled computationally. Animal psychology considers the question of whether animals other than humans can reason.

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  1. G

    Please help explain the reason for the errors displayed for my Java code

    //program showing an advantage of using arrays public class Arr3 { public static void main(String []args) { System.out.println("There are 31 days in the month of Jan"); System.out.println("There are 27 days in the month of Feb"); System.out.println("There...
  2. B

    B What's the reason microwave oven frequencies are at 2.45 Ghz?

    Hi, A little background before my question: I read that microwave oven frequencies are at 2.45 Ghz, or about a 12cm wavelength. Lately, 5G is using frequencies called millimeter waves, and these frequencies can be as high as 40Ghz. So, linguistically to me, it seems as microwave oven waves...
  3. Salmone

    I Rayleigh scattering -- What is the true reason for the color of the sky?

    I have a little question about Rayleigh scattering: I know that Rayleigh cross section is proportional to the inverse of the fourth power of the wavelenght of the incident light and that it is so even the intensity of the scattered beam of light, now: 1. What is the color of the sky due to...
  4. rudransh verma

    B Understanding Friction: Causes and Applications in Physics

    I read friction is the vector sum of the forces acting between the atoms of one surface and another. But the direction of friction is parallel to surface. I don’t get how friction occurs. I will also add the paragraph from my book “resnik” for further clarification. Other question is...
  5. T

    A Reason out the cross product (for the moment): a skew symmetric form

    I am sure you are all familiar with the cross product in 3D space. i cross into j gives k. Cyclic Negative, if reversed, etc. I am sure you are all familiar with the definition as: norm of the first vector, norm of the second, sine of the angle, perpendicular (but direction using right hand...
  6. S

    Is arguing with a moderator a valid reason to ban users?

    Is arguing with a moderator a valid reason to ban users? My old account has just been banned. I called another user stupid because he started ridiculing me. For that I received a warning. Fair enough, 4 points, that's adequate. I pointed at a double standard and argued that the moderator wasnt...
  7. V

    Reason for glass rod losing electrons

    I am not sure if the explanation below is enough. This is a high school level question. When rubbing occurs between glass and silk, then heat energy is produced which provides the energy needed to free up electrons in outermost orbits of atoms in silk or glass. But silk has very tightly bound...
  8. N

    Studying How to find challenges to use as a reason to study physics?

    Some days i get the itch to study math other days physics, or computer science. I am trying to break old patters and use my time more wisely. My reasons for study anything is very abstract, cause i don't really need any of these knowledges, and not many really does in todays day of age...
  9. V

    Automotive The reason for the low efficiency of the ICE - zero shoulder crankshaft

    I don't know English well, translated using google translate. The working mixture ignites at TDC, and at this point the crankshaft looks up (0 degrees). As the piston descends, the force that the piston needs to travel a certain distance (for example, 1 mm) decreases, up to the moment when the...
  10. S

    I What is the astronomy reason for no UHF channel 37?

    I was reading that the mysterious reason why this channel was removed from public use is because it interfered with radio astronomy (the Wikipedia article didn't mention the reason). So what is going on at this frequency?
  11. S

    I Reason for Gram's Law about Zeta Zeros

    Why does the Zeta function show the tendency called Gram's Law? : https://mathworld.wolfram.com/GramsLaw.html And why are there "good" and "bad" gram points as defined in https://mathworld.wolfram.com/GramBlock.html ?
  12. J

    I Reason for matter rather than antimatter?

    At the end of the inflation period (if it occurred) the potential energy of the inflaton field decays into particle/antiparticle pairs. When a particle/antiparticle pair is created each component of the total 4-momentum of the pair is zero. This must include the time component as well as the...
  13. halleff

    Physical/conceptual reason for inductor voltage step response

    I'm trying to understand the physical reason why when you drive an ideal inductor (no series resistance) with an ideal voltage step input (no series resistance), e.g. some Vin(t) = V0u(t), the output current will be a linear ramp. I can see how to derive this from the inductor equation, v = L...
  14. A

    Determining the reason for a forward reaction

    Summary:: In the question below, I've been asked to determine what happens to the reaction when the temperature is increased. I know the answer is a, but I'm having difficulty determining why. https://www.physicsforums.com/attachments/264126
  15. R

    What is the reason that the Gravitational Constant (G) varies?

    If G really not a constant then what are the implications in science?
  16. F

    The real reason for a capacitor having the same amounts of + and - charges on the two plates

    Most textbooks say that a capacitor whether it be a single one or one in series/parallel should have equal amounts of + and – charges on both plates and that they mostly conclude the + charges attract the same amount of – charges on the other plate without giving any reason. Now I claim that...
  17. sekushi0range

    Reason for Ferroin's color shift

    Ferroin is a redox indicator. It is the complexation of phenanthroline and iron. In its reduced state the Fe (II) - phenanthroline complex is red and in its oxidized state the Fe(III)- phenanthroline complex is blue. I am trying to understand in the context of d-d orbital transitions why this is...
  18. G

    I Is there a reason eigenvalues of operators correspond to measurements?

    Given a wave function \Psi which is an eigenstate of a Hermitian operator \hat{Q}, we can measure a definite value of the observable corresponding to \hat{Q}, and the value of this observable is the eigenvalue Q of the eigenstate $$ \hat{Q}\Psi = Q\Psi $$ My question is whether it's a postulate...
  19. Kaushik

    B What is the reason behind including ##2π/T##?

    Why do we include ##2π/T## and not just ##t## in equation of simple harmonic oscillators? ##x(t) = Acos(2πt/T)##
  20. Vivek98phyboy

    Reason for Calculating Surface tension

    When calculating force due to surface tension across a hemispherical drop, we look at only the circumference and multiply it by the value of surface tension. When we know that it is the surface tension which is responsible for the curved surface of the liquid drop, why don't we calculate the...
  21. S

    Earth's Atmosphere -- Is gravity the reason we have air pressure?

    I have read an article in Quora, where a person says that "Gravity pulls the atmosphere towards itself and that's one of the reason why our Atmosphere is still this way" and also adds that, "gravity is the reason we have air pressure in the first place. Gravity pulls on the atmosphere...
  22. J

    What is the reason behind alternate answers to a locus problem.

    The problem : A variable line, drawn through the point of intersection of the straight lines ##(x/a)+(y/b) = 1## and ##(x/b)+(y/a)=1##, meets the coordinate axes in A & B . We have to Show that the locus of the mid point of AB is the curve ##2xy(a + b) = ab(x + y)##. The solution : Let ##(h...
  23. ChrisXenon

    What is the Fundamental Reason for EMR Diffraction?

    I know the textbook definitions and descriptions of the phenomenon, but I'm hoping for a fundamental WHY. I can see that when a water wave passes an obstacle, the wave spreads out into that object's shadow because the wave's energy is not constrained to any direction and so it will move out in...
  24. V

    MHB Why Does $$\lim_{n\rightarrow \infty }\frac{n^{2016}\cdot 2^{n-1}}{3^{n}}=0$$?

    Why $$\lim_{n\rightarrow \infty }\frac{n^{2016}\cdot 2^{n-1}}{3^{n}}=0$$ ? Because $3^{n}> 2^{n-1} $ ?
  25. R

    Is there a reason Lang uses (x-s)^2 instead of (x+s)^2?

    Homework Statement When learning about quadratic equations in Langs book he gave the example: let ax^2 + bx+ c = 0 be an equation he subtracts the c, and says we want to get the left hand side (ax^2 + bx) = (x-s)^2 Homework EquationsThe Attempt at a Solution I'm just interested, either my...
  26. prashantakerkar

    Medical Can Comatose Patients Undergo Surgery?

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coma Can Surgery be done for a patient who is in Coma? If no, What is the medical reason ? Thanks & Regards, Prashant S Akerkar
  27. M

    The right reason for lift force on an aerofoil

    On the internet, I found two different explanations for lift force. In one of the explanations, bernoullis equation was applied between the stream flowing under and the stream above the aerofoil(the stream above moves faster and so less pressure than the lower). The other explanation says...
  28. BadgerBadger92

    Is there a reason the Big Bang would be secret?

    Is there a reason the Big Bang would be a private science (like time travel would be). Is the creation of a universe dangerous? Would there be any reason to this?
  29. Evo

    News Chef Anthony Bourdain Found dead reason girlfriend cheated on him

    I'm in shock. https://www.yahoo.com/gma/anthony-bourdain-dies-61-112903419--abc-news-topstories.html
  30. J

    Inertial and Gravitational mass - Assertion Reason

    Homework Statement [/B] Homework EquationsThe Attempt at a Solution I think the two masses , inertial and gravitational are equivalent and because of this fact , the ratio of the two masses is one . The correct option should be 1) . But the answer given is 3) i.e A statement is true and R...
  31. Suyash Singh

    Exploring the Motivations Behind Pursuing a PhD: First-Hand Accounts

    I wanted a recent first hand answer from people. Why would you do a phd? I thought everyone hated studies and just did it to get a job
  32. J

    Point charge - Assertion & Reason type problem

    Homework Statement Homework EquationsThe Attempt at a Solution These AR type problems are mostly tricky and debatable . To me, A is correct and R is wrong . Although electron is approximated to be a point particle , but I think if R is true , then A will be wrong . I think c) is correct ...
  33. physics loverq

    B What is the underlying reason for stimulated emission?

    I learned that stimulated absorption, spontaneous emission and stimulated emission are three fundamental concepts in the process of radiation. Among these three concepts, I found stimulated emission really hard to comprehend, it says when atom in its excited state is stimulated by external...
  34. J

    Is the Speed of Light Limited by the Properties of Matter?

    Is it possible that the speed of light exists because we cannot move faster than our particles? I.e. the speed of electrons that create the electromagnetic force that hold matter together.
  35. Wrichik Basu

    B Reason for black gel pen refills leaking in winter

    I mainly use black gel pens for writing. Every year in winter, I notice an awkward incident - almost every black gel pen refill that I have, start leaking! And it leaks regardless of the position in which I keep the pen - upright, slanting, horizontally on a table or upside down. For example, I...
  36. Wrichik Basu

    Reason for Optical Isomerism (at electron level)

    I have been studying Optical Isomerism recently, and I have got one question, answer to which was not in the books that I have. I have understood what the phenomenon is, and that, how one can determine whether the plane of polarised light is rotated, and how to tell from the structure whether...
  37. S

    What is the reason for harmonics in dc-dc converter?

    There is a nonlinear switch in every dc-dc converter.Is it the reason of harmonics in output voltage?
  38. S

    Reason why Pt is a good catalyst

    In many chemical reaction, Pt is used as catalyst often. I'm wondering for what reason Pt is used in many process.
  39. thebosonbreaker

    I Reason for the irrationality of (most) square roots?

    The square root of any integer that is not a square number is always an irrational number. I find this fact rather spectacular, but my question is why is this true? I have seen the formal proof for the irrationality of root 2 so I could vaguely see how one could prove that all (apart from sq...
  40. S

    The reason why thise research got the Nobel prize in chemistry 07

    "for his studies of chemical processes on solid surfaces" i thought nobel prize was rewarded for the research which have some meaning to the chemistry. In this study i found it hard to find some meaning. what i found one was that some other techniques were developed because of doing this...
  41. Deepak K Kapur

    B What is the reason for the Emergence of properties?

    Water molecule has different properties from either oxygen or hydrogen atom. My question is 'Are these properties of water molecules totally new or were these properties already lurking around in the oxygen and hydrogen atoms?' Thanks.
  42. I

    B Can this be another reason for dark energy?

    Suppose the initial force and energy bursting out during big bang was very huge . The matter just after big bang would have been very close , so the gravitational attraction would have been very high , which would have caused the acceleration produced by big bang to decrease . As time increased...
  43. T

    Medical Biochemical reason behind (neurotic) perfectionism

    Is the reason behind neurotic perfectionism known? I'm looking for the molecular basis of this kind of perfectionism but couldn't find much on Google - Web and Scholar.
  44. Avimanyu Ray

    I What causes retrograde rotation in planets and moons?

    When I googled it, I wasn't satisfied with the answers from various sites...some sites like universetoday.com gave me a glimpse but it was totally theoretical and based on assumption. Also I would like to know why some planets have retrograde rotation; what might have caused them to and why do...
  45. ThinkerCorny

    In bipolar transistor, what's the real reason for base to become narrow?

    I'm kind of new in this. Now, I'm especially talking about npn common emmiter configuration. I've read somewhere that base is made narrower to stop the recombination of minority charge with holes in base. And I assume that if base would broad then electron combine with holes creating strong...
  46. jedishrfu

    Problem with science today and the war on reason

    A recent Guardian article discusses the problem with science today and the war on reason: https://www.theguardian.com/science/2017/feb/01/facts-are-the-reason-science-is-losing-in-the-current-war-on-reason-science-communication?utm_medium=email&utm_source=flipboard
  47. M

    What is the reason we don't "see" the Universe's expansion?

    Homework Statement Ok, so if the universe is expanding, and the scale of space itself is changing, then that means that even humans and the Earth is expanding right? But is the reason why we don't notice this effect the slowness of it? So v=Hd, where H is Hubble's constant, which has a value of...
  48. T

    Remainder factor theorem: me reason this out

    Homework Statement find the number of polynomials f(x) that satisfies the condition: f(x) is monic polynomial, has degree 1000, has integer coefficients, and it can divide f(2x^3 + x) i would very much prefer that you guys give me hints first. thanks Homework Equations remainder factor theorem...