En Route

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Is positive psychology counter-productive?

Psychology is a complex yet interesting discipline, giving us some ideas on how our inner universe works. I have always thought psychologists or even psychology majors are one of the most powerful people because they have the tools and skills to analyse what and how we think.

Back to the question. I’m wandering again.

I just realised no one has told me these advices even once:

Following your heart may not be the best option.
Stop pursuing happiness.
Never do things you are good at.
Stoicism (and not optimism) may lead you to a better life.

On face value, these sound rude and ultimately depressing. Are we really killing somebody else’s dream when we recommend stopping the pursuit of happiness? Does doing things one isn’t good at dwarf potentials to excel? Does stoicism cease us from dreaming and foster contentment in mediocrity? Why not follow our hearts when we only live once?

Although unsurprising, I wonder why I never heard these when talking with family, friends, and colleagues. Perhaps we’ve been too aversive of the negative that we play down its value in any possible transformation, or we’re too timid to state the actual and real.

Or, are we that used to a results-oriented society to the point that even happiness becomes merely a goal/state we must achieve?

Regardless, why don’t we bravely take the non-conventional, uncharted approach? Why don’t we violate and question the mainstream for a meaningful tomorrow? Why not choose the yet-to-be-proven over the proven ones? All at the expense of risking the so-called attainment of happiness.

Once again, I’m full of questions and nothing has been answered. At least I ask.



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Today I suddenly remembered a hypothetical question from my Philosophy 171 (Ethics) class last year.

Suppose that you were privileged to choose the manner in which you will live. You could just continue with everything you have started and experience the ‘normal’, conventional life. On the other hand, a virtual world awaits you, where everything you want to obtain and experience can be found.

Definitely I’m not a philosopher, not even close to becoming a Philosophy geek. I find it a bit hard to explain it in such light or approach. An enthusiast might be more appropriate.


Laws of Motion (Part 1)

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I was fortunate to have been educated in one of the premier science high schools in the country. Even the most precious lessons we learn in various physical sciences (i.e., Physics, Chemistry), I realised, can be applied to the most mundane portion of our lives. I always keep that in mind.

Now you can call me whatever name you like because I took up Political Science. Anyway, that remains a science–however ‘soft’ in the eyes of those who think they’re hard and cool enough.

I wasn’t that good in Physics. The apparent complexity of the subject was reciprocated by an electrifying hate from me. It pushed me to the cliff upon garnering consistently low grades. Despite that, I find comfort in recalling Newton’s Three Laws of Motion.

And the augmenting tension subsides a little.

In a nutshell, the third law states, ‘For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.

That sounds logically simple. For instance, I stomped on the ground. Besides the force I used to act through my foot, a sensation will be felt as soon as it hits the ground which resulted from the ground’s reaction to the force I gave.

Whatever we did, are doing and will be doing, those actions will definitely impact us in one way or another, regardless of the level of reaction the universe will give to us. I am then reminded of the song I heard over the radio just this afternoon from the New Radicals. Yes, you will be getting an applause as a reaction for your brilliant answer–‘You Get What You Give‘.

It deserves questions at the initial. Why are you living a life you don’t even deserve? Why are you treated differently from how you should be dealt with? Why am I in despair despite doing all the requisites for success?