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Logic: The Right Use of Reason in the Inquiry After Truth Hardcover – September 1, 1997
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Fuzzy thinking is one of the great sins of our age. Christians who seek a return to the clear-mindedness which characterized the church of previous generations will certainly welcome the return of this great text. The clear devotion of Watts' hymns came from a clear mind--and that was no accident.
From the Inside Flap
As a child of Puritan parents, it is not surprising that Isaac Watts was greatly concerned about people's ability to think clearly. Whether a man was studying for the ministry or any other of the sciences, the ability to reason rightly was of utmost importance. Watts's work on logic and reason became a standard textbook for nearly 200 years, being used in such schools as Oxford, Cambridge, Harvard, and Yale.
In Logic, Watts address proper thinking under the four basic functions of the human mind: perception, judgment, reasoning, and disposition. In part one, Watts addresses human perception, the cultivation of ideas, and how we associate them with words. In part two, Watts treats human judgment and its ability to construct various kinds of propositions, while giving guidance for avoiding the formation of bad judgments. Part three covers our ability to reason, giving instruction on the use of syllogisms for constructing a good argument. Part four discusses the mind's disposition as a method of arranging our thoughts for better understanding and memory.
This book will help discipline the mind and train the reader to discern proper thinking and argumentation in seeking truth.
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Top Customer Reviews
The book explains concepts and gives definitions to help the reader better understand logic. I love the simple examples, and often biblical ones, that the author uses to illustrate his points. Some of the language may be a little outdated as words change meaning over time. There were parts that were a little dry, but overall a good read. The book closes with practical advice for those engaging in debate.
My favourite quote from the book, and argument used against the skeptic/agnostic is:
"Whatsoever is dictated to us by God Himself, or by men who are divinely inspired, must be believed with full assurance. Reason demands us to believe whatsoever divine revelation dictates; for God is perfectly wise, and cannot be deceived; He is faithful and good, and will not deceive His creatures; and when reason has found out the certain marks or credentials of divine testimony to belong to any proposition, there remains no farther inquiry to be made, but only to find out the true sense and meaning of that which God has revealed, for reason itself demands the belief of it."
Considering that the author Isaac Watts was a theologian, it was a bit surprising to find him judging an entire race in such a condescending manner, which I absolutely do not support. Nevertheless, outside this embarrassing hiccup, the book is well worth reading. Buy it!