Scientists have alluded to two minds of man, one that thinks and one that feels. This feeling and reason dichotomy parallels the folk distinction between the “head” and the “heart”.
It is for this reason that if the heart rules the head, it can becloud the mind and thus make reason ineffectual.
For ideal situation there must be balanced between reason and emotion. Given the reality that man has a single intelligence, the alleged two minds are really one reflecting distinct operations for each but interwined in a single circuitry of the human brain.
There is a coordination of all human faculties in a healthy mind that includes reason, imagination, emotions, senses and instincts. In case of emotions, feelings are essential to thought and vice versa.
Psychologists and educators alike make a powerful case as to the importance of emotional intelligence to our lives. This has catapulted to modern understanding of what emotional intelligence is all about. For biologists, it took fifty thousand generations to shape emotional intelligence as what we have known it today.
Throughout history, emotional intelligence is coupled with the rise of human civilization as well as with population from sparse to dense. It has also been noted that the last decade there was an upsurge of scientific research on emotional intelligence.
Using brain imaging technologies, which enable scientists to gather neurobiological data making possible for the first time the process of human emotions.
Pinpointed by imaging are brain centers that move man to rage or tears , love or hate providing now with more clarity of how our feelings work which can help neurologists to suggest fresh remedies for emotional ailments.
The seat of emotional intelligence is an almond shape neural cluster perched above the brain stem and at the bottom of limbic ring which is called the amygdala. It serves as the specialist for emotional matters. It is also a storehouse of man’s emotional memory. Both affection and passion depend on amygdala.
It triggers tears, an emotional signal unique to human, it sounds the alarm such as fear, excites the body flight or fight hormone, activates the cardiovascular system and make the senses more alert. To sum up, the role of amygdala with the rest of the brain especially with the neo-cortex (the thinking brain) is at the heart of emotional intelligence.
Nowadays, the cost of emotional deficiency or illiteracy is quite alarming. Among youths there is evidence of dropping levels of emotional competence manifested by the following:
1) Withdrawal problems – like sulking, lack of energy, feeling unhappy.
2) Depression – having fears and worries, feeling unloved, feeling nervous and depressed.
3) Attention problems – daydreaming, acting without thinking, doing poorly in school work.
4) Aggressiveness – lying and cheating, stubbornness and moodiness, having a hot temper.
Today, the most common disability recognized among teens unfortunately is mental illness coupled with incidence of drug use at staggering levels. Children of poor countries have the worst indexes of emotional deficiency, indicating a future generation which lack emotional competence, moral character and well being.
To develop emotional intelligence we need to be able to read our innermost feelings, rein in emotional impulse and able to handle relationship smoothly. We need also to master our feelings and allow emotional intelligence to overcome various risks of human behavior especially severe sadness and depression.