Wilson, The Dark Prince. To see her small and larger than life. She is both fragile and determined, like a paper umbrella in the rain. Gently he touched the tips of the earpieces. She was remarkably pretty in the sunlight, her gray eyes containing glimmers of blue and green. Like opals. There's hardly anything to hang them on. How fragile she was, he thought. Her will was so fierce, her temperament so prickly, that he tended to forget she was only half his size. He would have expected her to slap his hands away by now- she hated being touched, especially by him.
But she didn't move at all. When the anger becomes frequent and flares up at the slightest provocation, it is an indication that all is not well in your life. Frequent and uncontrolled anger is a symptom of a fragile state of mind, which gets manifested at the slightest unfavourable situation. Hatred makes your personality extremely fragile and you lose your temper on the slightest pretext, which further creates enmity. Browse By Tag. Love Quotes But we do. The idea is ludicrous, if it is not monstrous.
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It means to know that one is food for worms. This is the terror: to have emerged from nothing, to have a name, consciousness of self, deep inner feelings, an excruciating inner yearning for life and self-expression and with all this yet to die. It seems like a hoax, which is why one type of cultural man rebels openly against the idea of God. What kind of deity would create such a complex and fancy worm food? Bonus Points For: Making you contemplate your own non-existence and kind of making you feel okay about it.
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I love that. Because The Strong won their greater power and influence through outsmarting or outperforming others, they will come to adopt ethical beliefs that justify their position: that might makes right, that they are entitled to their privileged position, that they earned what is theirs. He also believed that Slave Morality is just as capable of corrupting and oppressing a society as Master Morality. He used Christianity as his primary example of this. That due to the exponential scaling of technology , Black Swan events are becoming more common and influential than ever before.
No, seriously. Couch is over there, Ray.
Emotional reasoning dominates many campus debates and discussions. It is, rather, a public charge that the speaker has done something objectively wrong. It is a demand that the speaker apologize or be punished by some authority for committing an offense. There have always been some people who believe they have a right not to be offended. Sometime in the s, however, college campuses began to focus on preventing offensive speech, especially speech that might be hurtful to women or minority groups.
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The sentiment underpinning this goal was laudable, but it quickly produced some absurd results. Among the most famous early examples was the so-called water-buffalo incident at the University of Pennsylvania. Many scholars and pundits at the time could not see how the term water buffalo a rough translation of a Hebrew insult for a thoughtless or rowdy person was a racial slur against African Americans, and as a result, the case became international news.
Claims of a right not to be offended have continued to arise since then, and universities have continued to privilege them. In a particularly egregious case, for instance, Indiana University—Purdue University at Indianapolis found a white student guilty of racial harassment for reading a book titled Notre Dame vs.
These examples may seem extreme, but the reasoning behind them has become more commonplace on campus in recent years. Last year, at the University of St. Thomas, in Minnesota, an event called Hump Day, which would have allowed people to pet a camel, was abruptly canceled. Students had created a Facebook group where they protested the event for animal cruelty, for being a waste of money, and for being insensitive to people from the Middle East. In the process, the bar for what we consider unacceptable speech is lowered further and further.
Since , new pressure from the federal government has reinforced this trend.
Federal antidiscrimination statutes regulate on-campus harassment and unequal treatment based on sex, race, religion, and national origin. Everyone is supposed to rely upon his or her own subjective feelings to decide whether a comment by a professor or a fellow student is unwelcome, and therefore grounds for a harassment claim.
Emotional reasoning is now accepted as evidence. If our universities are teaching students that their emotions can be used effectively as weapons—or at least as evidence in administrative proceedings—then they are teaching students to nurture a kind of hypersensitivity that will lead them into countless drawn-out conflicts in college and beyond. Schools may be training students in thinking styles that will damage their careers and friendships, along with their mental health. The recent spread of demands for trigger warnings on reading assignments with provocative content is an example of fortune-telling.
The idea that words or smells or any sensory input can trigger searing memories of past trauma—and intense fear that it may be repeated—has been around at least since World War I, when psychiatrists began treating soldiers for what is now called post-traumatic stress disorder. But explicit trigger warnings are believed to have originated much more recently, on message boards in the early days of the Internet.
Trigger warnings became particularly prevalent in self-help and feminist forums, where they allowed readers who had suffered from traumatic events like sexual assault to avoid graphic content that might trigger flashbacks or panic attacks. Search-engine trends indicate that the phrase broke into mainstream use online around , spiked in , and reached an all-time high in The use of trigger warnings on campus appears to have followed a similar trajectory; seemingly overnight, students at universities across the country have begun demanding that their professors issue warnings before covering material that might evoke a negative emotional response.
In , a task force composed of administrators, students, recent alumni, and one faculty member at Oberlin College, in Ohio, released an online resource guide for faculty subsequently retracted in the face of faculty pushback that included a list of topics warranting trigger warnings.
These topics included classism and privilege, among many others. Rather, trigger warnings are sometimes demanded for a long list of ideas and attitudes that some students find politically offensive, in the name of preventing other students from being harmed. Once you find something hateful, it is easy to argue that exposure to the hateful thing could traumatize some other people.
You believe that you know how others will react, and that their reaction could be devastating. Preventing that devastation becomes a moral obligation for the whole community. Some students, she wrote, have pressured their professors to avoid teaching the subject in order to protect themselves and their classmates from potential distress. However, there is a deeper problem with trigger warnings. According to the most-basic tenets of psychology, the very idea of helping people with anxiety disorders avoid the things they fear is misguided.
A person who is trapped in an elevator during a power outage may panic and think she is going to die. That frightening experience can change neural connections in her amygdala, leading to an elevator phobia. If you want this woman to retain her fear for life, you should help her avoid elevators. But if you want to help her return to normalcy, you should take your cues from Ivan Pavlov and guide her through a process known as exposure therapy.
You might start by asking the woman to merely look at an elevator from a distance—standing in a building lobby, perhaps—until her apprehension begins to subside. This reduction in fear during exposure is called habituation. Then, on subsequent days, you might ask her to get closer, and on later days to push the call button, and eventually to step in and go up one floor. This is how the amygdala can get rewired again to associate a previously feared situation with safety or normalcy.
Students who call for trigger warnings may be correct that some of their peers are harboring memories of trauma that could be reactivated by course readings.
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But they are wrong to try to prevent such reactivations. Students with PTSD should of course get treatment, but they should not try to avoid normal life, with its many opportunities for habituation. Classroom discussions are safe places to be exposed to incidental reminders of trauma such as the word violate. A discussion of violence is unlikely to be followed by actual violence, so it is a good way to help students change the associations that are causing them discomfort.
The expansive use of trigger warnings may also foster unhealthy mental habits in the vastly larger group of students who do not suffer from PTSD or other anxiety disorders. People acquire their fears not just from their own past experiences, but from social learning as well. If everyone around you acts as though something is dangerous—elevators, certain neighborhoods, novels depicting racism—then you are at risk of acquiring that fear too. Its purpose is to get students to focus on them and then relabel the people who have made such remarks as aggressors.
The term microaggression originated in the s and referred to subtle, often unconscious racist affronts. The definition has expanded in recent years to include anything that can be perceived as discriminatory on virtually any basis. For example, in , a student group at UCLA staged a sit-in during a class taught by Val Rust, an education professor. Although Rust was not explicitly named, the group quite clearly criticized his teaching as microaggressive. Lowercasing the capital I was an insult to the student and her ideology, the group claimed.
Even joking about microaggressions can be seen as an aggression, warranting punishment. Last fall, Omar Mahmood, a student at the University of Michigan, wrote a satirical column for a conservative student publication, The Michigan Review , poking fun at what he saw as a campus tendency to perceive microaggressions in just about anything. Mahmood was also employed at the campus newspaper, The Michigan Daily. In March, the student government at Ithaca College, in upstate New York, went so far as to propose the creation of an anonymous microaggression-reporting system.
Surely people make subtle or thinly veiled racist or sexist remarks on college campuses, and it is right for students to raise questions and initiate discussions about such cases. But the increased focus on microaggressions coupled with the endorsement of emotional reasoning is a formula for a constant state of outrage, even toward well-meaning speakers trying to engage in genuine discussion.
What are we doing to our students if we encourage them to develop extra-thin skin in the years just before they leave the cocoon of adult protection and enter the workforce? Would they not be better prepared to flourish if we taught them to question their own emotional reactions, and to give people the benefit of the doubt? Catastrophizing rhetoric about physical danger is employed by campus administrators more commonly than you might think—sometimes, it seems, with cynical ends in mind.
Schmidt had filed a grievance against the school about two months earlier after being passed over for a sabbatical. The quote was interpreted as a threat by a campus administrator, who received a notification after Schmidt posted the picture; it had been sent, automatically, to a whole group of contacts. According to Schmidt, a Bergen security official present at a subsequent meeting between administrators and Schmidt thought the word fire could refer to AKs. The president interpreted the collage as a threat against his life.
It should be no surprise that students are exhibiting similar sensitivity. At the University of Central Florida in , for example, Hyung-il Jung, an accounting instructor, was suspended after a student reported that Jung had made a threatening comment during a review session. All of these actions teach a common lesson: smart people do, in fact, overreact to innocuous speech, make mountains out of molehills, and seek punishment for anyone whose words make anyone else feel uncomfortable.
According to data compiled by the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, since , at least campaigns have been launched at U. Consider two of the most prominent disinvitation targets of former U. Rice was the first black female secretary of state; Lagarde was the first woman to become finance minister of a G8 country and the first female head of the IMF. Both speakers could have been seen as highly successful role models for female students, and Rice for minority students as well. But the critics, in effect, discounted any possibility of something positive coming from those speeches.
If students graduate believing that they can learn nothing from people they dislike or from those with whom they disagree, we will have done them a great intellectual disservice. Attempts to shield students from words, ideas, and people that might cause them emotional discomfort are bad for the students. They are bad for the workplace, which will be mired in unending litigation if student expectations of safety are carried forward. And they are bad for American democracy, which is already paralyzed by worsening partisanship.
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When the ideas, values, and speech of the other side are seen not just as wrong but as willfully aggressive toward innocent victims, it is hard to imagine the kind of mutual respect, negotiation, and compromise that are needed to make politics a positive-sum game. Rather than trying to protect students from words and ideas that they will inevitably encounter, colleges should do all they can to equip students to thrive in a world full of words and ideas that they cannot control.
One of the great truths taught by Buddhism and Stoicism, Hinduism, and many other traditions is that you can never achieve happiness by making the world conform to your desires. But you can master your desires and habits of thought.