Sunday, May 08, 2005

Dull and Bright

I am about a quarter of the way through an interesting book "48 Laws of Power" by Robert Greene.

I have just finished a fascinating Chapter called Infection: Avoid the unhappy and unlucky.

Here is a snippet

‘You can die from someone else's misery - emotional states are as infectious as diseases. You may feel you are helping the drowning man but you are only precipitating your own disaster. The unfortunate sometimes draw misfortune on themselves; they will also draw it on you. Associate with the happy and fortunate instead.’

This might look mean and uncaring at first glance but when read in context of the whole chapter you will understand the relevance of the author’s argument.

People who are genuinely sad - even depressed need our help and support - we would all sign up to that.

It is argued in this chapter that some people are unhappy as a state of mind and those people can drag you down if you let them. Conversely if we spend time in the company of people who are generally optimistic we feel better.

I can sign up that philosophy from personal experience - what do you think?

I once heard it described as follows;

'Spend time with dullards and thou shalt become dull'

I repeat however I am not talking here about people who are not well - I am talking about that type of person we all know who is just always always looking on the miserable side of life


Rocky said...

The 48 Laws of Power is an interesting book. As you stated there are a number of instances in the book when I felt as though the discussion was uncomfortable, but as you examine the information it often rings true. You give a great example. I am looking forward to reading the sister book. The 48 Laws of Seduction. I really like the writers style. although I often felt uncomfortable reading parts of the book, I found a wealth of useful information.

Trevor Gay said...

Hello Rocky

Like you I also feel uncomfortable with some of the content. I could never do some of the things suggested to gain power.

It is clearly a controversial book that is intended to make one think.

Sadly however I think the author is correct in many of his conclusions.

Many people gain power by means that you and I .... and thousands of other people would see as totally unethical and lacking integrity.

I do see examples of some of the less desirable of the 48 laws of power in my professional and personal life.

Great response as always Rocky - thanks


felix gerena said...

I understand your position Trevor. I think you can listen to everybody but that does not mean you have to act as if they were true. The problem with many pessimistic people is not that they see things always from the bad side but that in many cases they want you to think as they do or even act according to their thinking. You can listen to them and that should help them to relieve their pain but man, you don´t have to think as they do, and that is what usually hurts.

Trevor Gay said...

Like in all things Felix, I suppose we need to find a balance.

I guess spending too much time with 'always happy' people can also present challnges.

Given the choice however I would rather work and be with optimistic people than with pessimists.

Take care


jens said...

stay away from the greedy and the mysterious.
law of happiness and success.

if that is what he means... i d agree.

but i guess he means quite the oposite.

two thumbs down for mr greene.