Principle vs Emotion

Principle: The collectivity of moral or ethical standards or judgments.

Emotion: A mental state that arises spontaneously rather than through conscious effort and is often accompanied by physiological changes; a feeling.

These two words describe how people react to situations or circumstances that confront them at every moment of their waking time. I’m my own study in this subject. Up until I collapsed from letting emotional response be the way I answered to situations in my life I could not control what would transpire in my life.

My blood pressure would skyrocket. My head would spin from the possibilities of what could happen. Anxiety ruled my every move. I started having anxiety attacks. Then at the age of 56 I crashed. Finally at the age of 58 I got help from a psychologist and went on medication and stayed on it for years until I found I was totally emotionless.

From that view of the world where nothing touched me emotionally I learned principles that were played out gave results that were reasonable and with wisdom I learned to depend on making logical decisions based on those principles. I could depend on doing so without an emotional response.

Then came a day about a year ago I decided to discontinue the medication because I longed to be able to feel emotions. I especially wanted to cry. Sounds crazy I suppose, but I did. I wanted the things of the world to touch me again.

From all this I could expand to a larger picture of this journey, but suffice to say I’ve found the balance of emotions and principles. I largely depend on principles to make my decisions in most all circumstances I encounter. In the past some of the circumstances I encounter now would have devastated me back then. Emotional responses have to take a back seat. I reserve emotions to help me respond to people’s needs or losses.

Emotional response enhances my responses through principles that gives me strong reason to ensure they have their situation alevieviated. This is demonstrated to me when I go to disasters as a Chaplain. The tornados that ravaged Kentucky and the surrounding states in December proved to me I’m on the right track. I cried over these people and their losses. But my response in principle was girded thusly to see that they had supplies and the tools needed to cling to normalcy.

My heart cannot express the depth of what I write in this post. It’s not really principle vs emotion so much as the balance of the two to make the soul and spirit of man mature more as the days go forward.

Don’t let your emotions rule you. Likewise, don’t let stone-cold principles give you the final answer. Learn to balance the two together.

About Jim

I'm a 72 yr old guy, who had worked in Naval Hospital Camp Lejeune for 28 yrs and now retired as of 31 Dec 16. I've worked in medical records, Health Benefits Department, Billing, the IT department and retired as the Personnel Security Manager for the hospital. I'm a musician and Corvette enthusiast. Yes, I have had two. I traded my second Corvette for a Harley Davidson Fat Boy mid-summer 2019. I've already ridden about seven thousand miles. I'm also searching for a fresh new outlook on life with new spiritual insight among other things. I was ordained a minister on 20190202. I've become certified with the American Chaplaincy Association through Aidan University in June '21. I've found that with the unconditional love of my companion, Libby Rowe life is complete through God. She's a beautiful, vibrant, giving woman who gives her all in everything she puts her mind to do. She and I married on 24 July 2015. She was ordained in February 2022. She has a blog too called Under a Carolina Moon. Give it a visit.
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2 Responses to Principle vs Emotion

  1. I love this.I needed an understanding of how balance the two.Would love to hear more on this

    • Jim says:

      I would love to get more into the subject. I see so many Christians that function almost entirely on emotional decisions and spend an inordinate amount of time at the altar on Sundays. Stopping and carefully examining their processes based on a balance would likely mean speedier maturity. I had my mentor many times ask how long did I want to spend in the wilderness, that being 40 years or 40 days alluding to the Israelites in the wilderness till a whole generation had died off or be like Jesus and come from the wilderness in 40 days victorious.

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