Episode #042 – Optimism



On this episode, we explore the benefits and drawbacks of optimism. First, we examine the various motivations for pessimism, and hear what Winston Churchill, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and Marcus Aurelius have to say about optimism. Next, we think about the vastly different implications of optimism in our personal lives and optimism on a societal level. Finally, we find out why Voltaire thought it was preposterous to think that we’re living in the best of all possible worlds and why he said, “Optimism is the madness of insisting all is well when we are miserable.” All this and more on the latest episode of Philosophize This!


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See the full transcript of this episode here.


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Additional Stuff For Anyone Interested:

Great concise Bio of Voltaire: http://www.egs.edu/library/voltaire/biography/

As always, Stanford: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/voltaire/

Great article on the origins of religious tolerance: http://www.independent.org/newsroom/article.asp?id=2095


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