Saturday, September 17, 2016

The Tyranny of Positivity

How forcing positivity can create despair...

People need to hear this.  I was about to say, "I think people need to hear this."  That's not an option I'm offering though.  People simply need to hear this.  It's funny this should come up this morning also because just yesterday someone was asking me about the Law of Attraction and the power of positive thinking.  My response was that it simply isn't that easy.  I tried to articulate that I don't believe in it but that I believe in mathematics and in probability.  I don't for one minute believe that being positive can create possibility or probability, but rather that taking positive action can increase the possibility or probability that an already existing positive outcome will occur.  I went further to say that, and this is a belief, that more often than not, the only bad action is no action at all.  Negativity most often manifests in inaction, thereby negating the possibility or probability that the outcome of anything will ever be any different than it already is.  

It's just math.  I don't believe that there is any spiritual or metaphysical advantage to being cheery all the time. Furthermore, I think it's just plain insulting to insist that people "focus on the positive," and to infer that if something goes wrong it's because someone just didn't do that, or that maybe they didn't have enough faith.  

Sometimes a person's best efforts are just not enough, and sometimes shitty things happen despite our best efforts.  Don't pile superstition on top of it like salt to a wound.  It's not fair.  Sometimes things just suck.  

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