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Physics relies on the fundamental postulate that the universe follows certain laws, and it just remains to find out exactly what they are. In this sense the universe is rationally explicable.

But human beings are in the universe, that is they are njot apart from it. And we know that they have irrational impulses, emotional and intellectual.

In this case the universe is not (wholly) rationally explicable, as humans are not.

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I think if you would examine the two different uses of "rational" here you'd find out that there's no question left. –  iphigenie Dec 2 '12 at 11:19
    
There's a big difference between "being rational" and "being rationally explicable"! Why should "irrational impulses, emotional and intellectual" not be rationally explicable? –  DBK Dec 2 '12 at 19:46
    
@DBK: ask Hume, he said reason was a slave to the passions. –  Mozibur Ullah Dec 2 '12 at 20:30
    
@MoziburUllah: What has Hume to do with anything? Also, Hume was talking about practical reason, not theoretical reason, i.e. reason concerned with knowledge. –  DBK Dec 2 '12 at 21:09
    
This is a good and interesting problem (whether reality is rational) but the question as currently formulated doesn't really get to the core of the issue. Let's try to find some way to express the concern a bit more directly. Closing for the time being pending some reformulation. –  Joseph Weissman Dec 3 '12 at 19:16
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closed as not a real question by DBK, Joseph Weissman Dec 3 '12 at 19:15

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1 Answer

The fact that humans can act "irrational" doesn't necessarily mean that they aren't rationally explicable. In fact neuroscience is trying to do exactly that. I think if you'd distinguish between "rationally explicable" and "acting rational", your question would dissolve.

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I agree that the question does dissolve if the irrational behaviour of humans can be rationally explicable, but I'm not sure that this is always possible or even fundamentally true, but it doesn't make the attempt worth trying. –  Mozibur Ullah Dec 2 '12 at 15:23
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