Tagged: comfort

A Few Certainties

You will not achieve much that you set out to accomplish in your life — but you will correct your intentions retroactively in order to persuade yourself that you did. The best things you do will never be the things you do for money, attention, or other tangible forms of reward. On the contrary, the best things you do will most often be...

Belonging and Hedonism

For most people, belonging to a group or tribe brings comfort. Comfort is pleasure. Therefore, if pleasure is happiness, then belonging brings happiness. If, however, pleasure is not happiness, then what does the comfort of belonging to a tribe bring you? An escape from the reality of unhappiness, perhaps? The same may be said of all other pleasures which, like belonging, entail a...

Pleasure and the Status Quo

We can gain more from one painful confusion than from a hundred satisfying pleasures. This formula is most true — is amplified — in those times when recourse to easy pleasure might seem most comforting, or even essential. For pleasure, by its nature, reinforces certainties and reassures us against doubts, thereby softening precisely those hard edges of the practical and psychological status quo...

Living Against the Age

He sees that something may bring tangible benefits and boons, and yet lead to decay and deterioration in the long run — and he is therefore eager to retain at all costs the vantage point needed to discern the difference between short and long. He is suspicious of everyone inclined to speak of certain positive conditions arising in our times (such as the...

Progressive Perfections

Necessity is the mother of invention. Progressivism seeks, as a matter of overt principle and coercive policy, to eradicate all necessity — material want, physical disadvantage, social failure, feelings of inadequacy or self-hatred, emotional insecurity. Thus, to the extent the progressives are successful, they will, as a consequence of the covert principles and authoritative policies of Nature, eradicate all invention, or at least...

On Comfort and Freedom

In my “Impolitic Reflections,” I noted Plato’s antagonism toward democracy, rooted in his presumption that the majority of men will always have appetitive natures, and therefore be unfit to direct a city that wishes to be just and wise. For this reason, I explained, he has his Socrates argue that in founding a good city, “you would never place any of its decision-making...