Zacharias ๐Ÿ Voulgaris

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Why Itโ€™s Pointless Arguing with a Hopeless PESSIMIST

Why Itโ€™s Pointless Arguing with a Hopeless PESSIMIST

As Lada Prkic pointed out in my previous article, dealing with a hopeless pessimist can be as difficult and counterproductive. I don't know if it's the same as dealing with hopeless optimists or not; it's worth looking into, however, since many people gravitating towards the politics of the situation we are experiencing (or any other dire situation) tend to become gradually hopeless and pessimistic about life.

A hopeless pessimist is not the exact opposite of a hopeless optimist, however. The latter is innately naive and even innocent when it comes to the workings of the world. The hopeless pessimist, on the other hand, tends to at least understand certain things about the world. This understanding is geared particularly towards the darker side of things, aka geopolitics and social injustice. Perhaps thatโ€™s why that person is so negative in his outlook of the world, with very bleak views of the future. Interestingly, this approach, although more grounded and in touch with reality, isnโ€™t effective or sustainable. Perhaps itโ€™s as bad as seeing the world through rosy glasses.

The hopeless pessimists are also in this challenging state because of a lack of perspective. They may understand the past and even the present, to a great extent, but they ignore a lot of things about the future. Since the latter isn't easy to know (even if you are in the business of Predictive Analytics), it's not a surprise that most people don't even bother to look at it. Also, the fact that the hopeless pessimist views the world in a linear manner (like most people), she is led to believe that if things have gotten worse in the past few years, chances are that they are going to be even worse since the pattern hasn't changed yet. However, everything in nature manifests in a cyclical pattern (aka, seasonal effect, in Time Series Analysis). So, trying to predict the future using a linear model is naive, at best, if not entirely idiotic. Yet, that's what many people do, for lack of a better way to model it. Perhaps the linear patterns observed hold for the short term (e.g., in the next few years), but making more long-term predictions based on them is bound to be highly inaccurate.

I have no illusions, however. There are tough times ahead and perhaps even a global conflict. The mentality of scarcity that has dominated the world for centuries is still around, for the most part, so we may manifest it even more unless we collectively change the way we view the world, our position in it, and our relationship with nature. Yet, even if we change our views today, it will take some time before this resolve manifests through actions and a robust enough infrastructure making our view of the world a sustainable one. I'm not talking about environmentalism here, by the way, since that's just one (relatively small) piece of the puzzle. Unless we solve more pressing problems, such as our relationship with energy, for example, any other actions may be insufficient if not counter-productive altogether.

Perhaps to remedy the pessimism that has spread in the world (and which undoubtedly resides to some extent within us too), we need to employ faith; faith in nature, faith in ourselves, and faith in the future. We may need to think more qualitative than quantitative, exploring different possibilities instead of just different grades of the same old stuff. And with this as a starting point, we can learn to stand our ground, not letting excessive pessimism or excessive optimism shake us from our center. After all, it's in that center that our strength dwells. As a great verse from the Bible says: "Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong." - 1 Corinthians 16:13. Cheers


Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong.

1 Corinthians 16:13

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Zacharias ๐Ÿ Voulgaris

#21
I'd like to bring back normalcy for everyone. Do you do spells like that? :-)

John Rylance

John Rylance

9 mesi fa #18

#19
sounds good a diet of silver linings, finding gold at the end of the rainbow, by always looking on the bright side of life. As is sung in South Pacific be a cockeyed optomist.

David Navarro Lรณpez

David Navarro Lรณpez

9 mesi fa #17

I accuse myself to be a hopeless optimistic. By choice. I prefer not to look too deep into terrible things that are out of my control, and use my energy on trying to compensate them with positive things. Naive? Yes my Honour, I confess. For being pessimistic helps no one, and draws me into depression, so we are both in the same "s**t hole" I prefer to die due to innocence as due to depression or a heart attack.

Zacharias ๐Ÿ Voulgaris

#14
That's quite profound. It reminds me of the Bayesian approach to data analytics: unless you have absolute certainty about something, any kind of evidence you can get hold of can help you refine your predictions. It's hard though to maintain such open-mindedness online, especially nowadays where communication is going through a difficult phase (one of the many side-effects of social distancing, perhaps). Thank you for clarifying and for contributing to this insightful discussion!

John Rylance

John Rylance

9 mesi fa #15

#15
Thanks. Yes its like the adage measure twice cut once. As you say read twice comment once.

Lada ๐Ÿก Prkic

Lada ๐Ÿก Prkic

9 mesi fa #14

#12
John, comments are often misunderstood. It seems we all need to read someone's comment twice before responding but also be more tolerant of people's opinions and views. There are always those who weigh each word. :)

Lada ๐Ÿก Prkic

Lada ๐Ÿก Prkic

9 mesi fa #13

#10
Zacharias, what I meant by "dogmatic" are people who think they know everything and are always right, who arrogantly asserts their opinions and do not respect someone else's opinion. Arguing with such people is completely pointless, especially on social media.

Joyce ๐Ÿ Bowen Brand Ambassador @ beBee

#10
I hear you, Zack. Perhaps there was a time when I'd agree, but I've actually had the opportunity to confront some people [they call themselves professionals] about crimes they have committed. I was persecuted for trying to take down this MD. I halfway succeeded. https://www.bebee.com/producer/@joyce-bowen/deception and the story of another of his victims here [there were so many]: https://joyce-bowen.blog/2017/03/19/predation-stories-of-stolen-childhoods/ I was able to confront an MD at an institution that did this: https://www.bebee.com/producer/@joyce-bowen/42-u-s-code-5106a-291159 So many children were lost. For me, it has always been about children, perhaps because of the unimaginable things that have occurred in my life. https://www.bebee.com/producer/@joyce-bowen/to-what-extent-is-the-human-population-being-turned-into-lab-rats and because I know it won't stop happening to little ones today.

John Rylance

John Rylance

9 mesi fa #11

#8
#9 The point being that some people (not you I hasten to add) try to fufill one or more of the ways to be termed a realist and fail and therefore are hopeless at it. I have learnt two things one the myriad of types of realists, and secondly to give more thought to my comments and who they are directed towards. Keep Safe in 2021.

John Rylance

John Rylance

9 mesi fa #10

#8
#9 The addition of the adjective was not directed at you personally,it was added purely as an extention of the original posts.

Zacharias ๐Ÿ Voulgaris

#5
I believe Pascal alluded to the same point. I honestly don't know. Dogma can definitely push someone to extremes (I speak from experience). Maybe even shift that person's perspective to be overly optimistic (e.g., cults whose members commit suicide because their leader promised them something amazing in the afterlife), OR to be overly pessimistic (e.g., many conspiracists who have a fatalistic approach to the whole matter). Perhaps there is common ground among them. I'm not sure how this can alleviate the predicament they are in though. Thank you for your feedback!

Joyce ๐Ÿ Bowen Brand Ambassador @ beBee

#4
2/2 reโ€ขalโ€ขist n. 1. a person who tends to view or represent things as they really are. 2. a writer or artist whose work is characterized by realism. 3. an adherent of philosophic realism. Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, ยฉ 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. Noun 1. realist - a philosopher who believes that universals are real and exist independently of anyone thinking of them philosopher - a specialist in philosophy pragmatist - an adherent of philosophical pragmatism 2. realist - a person who accepts the world as it literally is and deals with it accordingly individual, mortal, person, somebody, someone, soul - a human being; "there was too much for one person to do" pragmatist - a person who takes a practical approach to problems and is concerned primarily with the success or failure of her actions 3. realist - a painter who represents the world realistically and not in an idealized or romantic style painter - an artist who paints and on and on, but the definitions remain the same. You sound like someone standing on the tracks in front of a rushing train, denying its existence.

Joyce ๐Ÿ Bowen Brand Ambassador @ beBee

1/2 #4 My my--distortion is taking on a new life-form. You added the word "hopeless." Are you projecting? I don't recall adding that word. realist n 1: a person who recognizes what is real or possible in a particular situation: one who accepts and deals with things as they really are realist n 1. a person who is aware of and accepts the physical universe, events, etc, as they are; pragmatist 2. (Art Terms) an artist or writer who seeks to represent the familiar or typical in real life rather than an idealized, formalized, or romantic interpretation 3. (Literary & Literary Critical Terms) an artist or writer who seeks to represent the familiar or typical in real life rather than an idealized, formalized, or romantic interpretation 4. (Philosophy) philosophy a person who accepts realism 5. (Logic) (modifier) of, relating to, or characteristic of realism or realists in the arts, philosophy, etc: a realist school. 6. (Philosophy) (modifier) of, relating to, or characteristic of realism or realists in the arts, philosophy, etc: a realist school. 7. (Literary & Literary Critical Terms) (modifier) of, relating to, or characteristic of realism or realists in the arts, philosophy, etc: a realist school. 8. (Art Terms) (modifier) of, relating to, or characteristic of realism or realists in the arts, philosophy, etc: a realist school. Collins English Dictionary โ€“ Complete and Unabridged

Joyce ๐Ÿ Bowen Brand Ambassador @ beBee

2/2 reโ€ขalโ€ขist n. 1. a person who tends to view or represent things as they really are. 2. a writer or artist whose work is characterized by realism. 3. an adherent of philosophic realism. Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, ยฉ 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved. Noun 1. realist - a philosopher who believes that universals are real and exist independently of anyone thinking of them philosopher - a specialist in philosophy pragmatist - an adherent of philosophical pragmatism 2. realist - a person who accepts the world as it literally is and deals with it accordingly individual, mortal, person, somebody, someone, soul - a human being; "there was too much for one person to do" pragmatist - a person who takes a practical approach to problems and is concerned primarily with the success or failure of her actions 3. realist - a painter who represents the world realistically and not in an idealized or romantic style painter - an artist who paints and on and on, but the definitions remain the same. You sound like someone standing on the tracks in front of a rushing train, denying its existence.

Joyce ๐Ÿ Bowen Brand Ambassador @ beBee

2/2 #4 My my--distortion is taking on a new life-form. You added the word "hopeless." Are you projecting? I don't recall adding that word. realist n 1: a person who recognizes what is real or possible in a particular situation: one who accepts and deals with things as they really are realist n 1. a person who is aware of and accepts the physical universe, events, etc, as they are; pragmatist 2. (Art Terms) an artist or writer who seeks to represent the familiar or typical in real life rather than an idealized, formalized, or romantic interpretation 3. (Literary & Literary Critical Terms) an artist or writer who seeks to represent the familiar or typical in real life rather than an idealized, formalized, or romantic interpretation 4. (Philosophy) philosophy a person who accepts realism 5. (Logic) (modifier) of, relating to, or characteristic of realism or realists in the arts, philosophy, etc: a realist school. 6. (Philosophy) (modifier) of, relating to, or characteristic of realism or realists in the arts, philosophy, etc: a realist school. 7. (Literary & Literary Critical Terms) (modifier) of, relating to, or characteristic of realism or realists in the arts, philosophy, etc: a realist school. 8. (Art Terms) (modifier) of, relating to, or characteristic of realism or realists in the arts, philosophy, etc: a realist school. Collins English Dictionary โ€“ Complete and Unabridged

Lada ๐Ÿก Prkic

Lada ๐Ÿก Prkic

9 mesi fa #4

Zacharias, another question came to my mind after reading your post. Can hopeless optimist and pessimist find common ground? You don't have to write one more post. :-)) More pointless than arguing with a hopeless pessimist or optimist is arguing with a dogmatic person.

John Rylance

John Rylance

9 mesi fa #3

Two interesting pieces. #2 Joyce's comment raises two new areas :- hopeless realists and hopeless fantasists. Another dangerous dichotomy? Suggests to me we are all hopeless in our own way. Some might say all arguments are pointless, unless you win of course.

Joyce ๐Ÿ Bowen Brand Ambassador @ beBee

Thank God I'm neither. I'm a realist. Dichotomous thinking is dangerous.

Pascal Derrien

Pascal Derrien

9 mesi fa #1

I am more wary of dogma diluted within pessimism or optimism :-) they are equally dangerous

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