John Ferric wrote:At the end of "Psychological Types" Jung provides a list of "Definitions." Among them is his definition of the term "irrational." I am not convinced he used this particular definition of irrational in all of his writings - what do you think? The attached pdf contains Jung's definition of irrational.
He includes anything that lies outside the province of reason as irrational. This can include different things. It can include, for example, facts of the psyche as a dream or archetype because they simply exist therefore reason or feeling do not "call" them into existence. It can also include an accident because we cannot come to any rational explanation that aptly explains it. Sense and Intuition are irrational because one observes the outer world of facts and the latter observes the inner world of facts. Since they merely observe, they lie outside the province of rationality.
To answer your question there are different things that qualify as irrational. An emotion is irrational because it simply exists. It may have an underlying reason for existing, but an emotion, itself, is an affect that, in its essence, is irrational. We cannot say that sadness is, in essence, any more rational than the existence of rain. We can say rain exists to feed the crops, but we are merely postulating about the rain. The rain is a fact of reality and that fact lies outside the province of reason. It does not owe its existence to your reason deciding that it is there.
That does not, however, mean that something that is irrational in nature, for example, an archetype, cannot be subjected to reason. It simply means that the archetype, itself, does not owe its existence to reason or can it be reasoned out of existence in such a way that modernists hope to get rid of the irrational FACTS of the psyche by merely conquering them afield with reason. It is one thing to apply reason to a dream that one is interpreting; it is another to expect the triumph of reason to simply make the dream disappear. The latter is actually a magical belief in the power of reason. This is why Jung had such a problem with rationalists believing that the rational side of humanity will at some point extinguish its irrational side.
Not all problems have rational solutions meaning that reason does not need to be applied. This does not mean that the application of reason to facts of the psyche is unwise; although, it may not be the correct solution.