Thought Dump #9

To have one influence is plagiarism, to have ten is creativity.

You’ll stop being used when you stop being useful.

No one’s screwed up his life so badly he feels unqualified to give advice.

Schopenhauer’s essays are long but concise, because each of his sentences is jam-packed with meaning. On the other hand, a BuzzFeed article is short but long-winded, because it is mindless.

It’s better to leave your work rough and unfinished than to try to improve it beyond your capabilities.

Impure, like the desire to become a writer.

Retarded, like the notion that human nature is fundamentally good.

The Conceive-Believe-Achieve mindset is just slave morality packaged as master morality. On the surface, it seems empowering. “You can do anything you set your mind to, dude.” But actually it’s a trap designed to keep you enslaved. For if success is in your hands, then so is failure. If you happen to be poor, you have none to blame but yourself. So long as people can be made to believe they are 100% responsible for their life situation, they are not likely to revolt against the status quo.

Argumentativeness is one of the most common forms of insecurity.

“I don’t like labels” means “I don’t want to be associated with an objective standard by which my conduct might be judged unfavourably.”

Nietzsche once remarked that Plato was a coward in the face of reality. Plato, he says, fled into the ideal because he couldn’t handle real life. The truth, however, is just the opposite. Plato was an athlete, jacked, and could probably do 20 pull-ups in a row; he was quite capable. Nietzsche, by contrast, collapsed into insanity after seeing a horse get whipped.

Ease  by Dmitry Kochetkov

Ease by Dmitry Kochetkov

There is a way of telling the truth that amounts to lying, and a way of lying that amounts to telling the truth.

The only thing more demoralizing than seeing incompetent people succeed is seeing talented people fail.

In every art, mastery is defined by mastery of fundamentals.

Phoniness is just a pejorative term for politeness.

It’s hard to write a book so good it’s worth the time to read it.

Just letting the time pass, as all artists know, can be the most productive thing you do all day.

We readily own up to the vices associated with strength, such as anger, lust, stubbornness, etc. But no one admits to being a liar, or a coward.

Buddhism, Stoicism, paganism, etc., are all what we would expect a religion to be like: practical, plausible, flexible. Christianity stands alone in being impractical, implausible, and rigid. Let’s take a closer look at the strangeness of Christian dogma. God is one, but at the same time He is also three: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. In the beginning, He created the world and everything in it—not out of some previously-existing material, as literally all non-Abrahamic religions posit, but out of nothingness itself: a truly remarkable display of omnipotence. So far, so good. But things didn’t go smoothly. Somewhere along the way, man fell into sin, and death entered the world. Unfortunately, no human effort is sufficient on its own to escape sin; without supernatural aid, we’d be out of luck. The good news is that we’ve been saved. How so? Here’s where things get really weird. To effect our salvation, the Almighty Creator of the universe condescended to become a human person, Jesus Christ, who died on the cross, and was resurrected. And we too shall be resurrected someday, not just in spirit but in the very flesh—just like Jesus. That’s Christianity in a nutshell. It is the only religion that utterly fails to conform to any of our expectations, which is perhaps the best evidence available that it isn’t made up.