A rejection of reason
. As a philosophical theory
, irrationalism is exposed to a dilemma
. If it is not supported by rational argument
, why should it be accepted? But if it is supported by rational argument, then the rejection of the use of reason is in effect abandoned.
Many irrationalist doctrines do not actually reject the use of reason entirely, but assign to reason a reduced, subordinate role. Instead, unreflective intuition, instinctive feeling and spontaneity are extolled, and the controlling influence of moral principles and factual knowledge is scorned. Ludwig Klages and Oswald Spengler are often taken to represent this outlook.
In philosophy of religion, this approach is known as fiedism.
In philosophical anthropology, rejection of the view that man is a rational animal.
In metaphysics, denial of the view that ultimate reality has a rational character.