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Thinking and Feeling

Watch Prof Mark Solms explain the distiction between thinking and feeling.

The distinction between thinking and feeling is absolutely fundamental to understanding the mind. In this course, I argue that feelings represent problems, needs or demands upon the mind to perform work. Feelings make us aware that something unexpected, unpredictable or unsolved is occurring.

When I say that feelings represent demands upon the mind to perform work, what I really mean is that they represent demands on thinking. The mind in this colloquial sense that I’m using, should be referred to as thinking. Feelings come first and thoughts are ways of dealing with the feelings – ways of as it were – thinking our way out of the feelings, finding a solution that meets the need that lies behind the feeling. I say they come first in the hierarchical or developmental sense, in that first we have feelings.

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What is a Mind?

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