According to Depraz and Gallagher, the "leading hypothesis"
is that emotions are "inextricable from every mental act" (Depraz
& Gallagher, 2003: 8), and Damasio presents the most developed theory
of the role of emotion in cognition. Damasio claims that most of our decision
making needs to be made quickly, so is accomplished by "body-related
... somatic-marker[s]" (Damasio, 2003: 148) which make emotion and feeling
"indispensable" to the process of reasoning (Damasio, 2003: 145).
Because we retain the knowledge of how previous responses impacted on our
lives, we revive the "emotional signals" associated with those circumstances
when a new situation arises (Damasio, 2003: 147). We are sometimes aware of
this process, as for example when we get a "gut feeling" about something
(Damasio, 2003: 147), but somatic markers also operate outside awareness producing
"alterations in working memory, attention, and reasoning" (Damasio,
2003: 148). Damasio's theory is supported by "substantial evidence"
(Damasio, 2003: 149) and correlates with Gendlin's
notion of the felt sense.