The Idealist-Realist Dialectic

I’ve already hinted at “the idealist” and “the realist” being at odds in the way they perceive the world through Lin Yutang’s pseudo-scientific formula:

Reality + Dreams = A heart-ache (usually called Idealism)
Reality + Humour = Realism (also called Conservatism)

I hear you say “Why?” Always “Why?” You see things; and you say “Why?” But I dream things that never were; and I say “Why not?George Bernard Shaw 

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Notes on Saving Icarus: Lin Yutang’s Pseudo-Scientific Formula for Wisdom

Self-Realization vs Self-Help

Our century is filled with formulas for living, statistical  empirical studies, tests and proofs of what brings happiness, what constitutes the good life that, you may notice, provided you don’t get caught in the hype, only corroborate age old wisdom for happy happening, found in every cultures and especially religious traditions/institutions, like marriage, going to church/synagogue and other rituals, respect of the elders etc…   The promise of Seligman’s learned optimism against learned helplessness, started with humanistic psychology, has degenerated into the overly statistical science of happiness, known as positive psychology. Continue reading