Notes on “Candid or Optimism”.

“Candid or Optimism” is a text written by Voltaire. Below are some statements made in the book. They are not quotations, but paraphrases, and may not reflect my opinion on this subject.

  1. Back when the book was written, it was common to believe that things, as long as they were done with a goal in mind, always tended for the best.
  2. But, if everything tends for the best, why do things fail so badly?
  3. A person who is often busy thinking about “higher” things, ends up becoming a big goof in normal, everyday life.
  4. If everything tends for the best, why do nations make war against each other?
  5. A philosopher trembles when participating in war.
  6. If everything tends for the best, why do we fall ill?
  7. If this really is the best possible world, it’s pointless to believe in the devil.
  8. It’s ridiculous to say that all “small” misfortunes contribute for the greater good.
  9. God didn’t give us weapons to destroy each other, but we made them anyway because we feel the need for them (a need that wouldn’t arise without the existence of hatred).
  10. If everything tends for the best, why do good people die and so many bad people are filthy rich?
  11. The belief that everything tends to the best is an indirect nod to fate in opposition to freedom.
  12. If everything tends to the best, then all deaths are necessary.
  13. Everyone is religious when a tragedy happens.
  14. You need to be abnormaly naive to believe that everything tends to the best or that this world is the best possible world.
  15. If a perfect world really exists, then it sure isn’t this one.
  16. There’s hate in every religion, as no religion is free of people who are willing to hate.
  17. The strongest thing that keeps a desperate person from suiciding is fear.
  18. If this really is the best possible world, then how come so many people hate their own lives?
  19. If this is the best possible world, why some of us feel the need to commit crimes?
  20. Nature is nothing like an optimist thinks.
  21. You can’t really argue with hungry cannibals about how killing others, even if for food, is sinful.
  22. Every culture has it’s laws.
  23. There’s always civilization around rivers.
  24. If you walk aimlessly, even if you don’t find something good, you will certainly find something different.
  25. Whenever possible, mix the useful and the pleasurable in a single thing.
  26. When a nation starts to relate with other nations, it loses it’s original innocence.
  27. Gold and jewels only have value where they are rare.
  28. If you are already sure that you have what’s needed for survival, you don’t need to ask anything else from God, but you are supposed to be thankful.
  29. In a country where everyone knows the religion, there’s no need of priests at all.
  30. Staying in the same place can make you treat your opinions as truths, even if your opinions are wrong, meaning that you must travel to compare your culture with others to correct your own.
  31. The best greeting is a hug.
  32. If you feel alright in a place, there’s no need to move.
  33. If this is the best world possible, then how come we can improve it?
  34. Love can last longer than wealth.
  35. There’s an implied dark past behind a lot of items that you buy.
  36. How come we treat each other so badly when we are all brothers and sisters?
  37. Optimism is saying that everything is going well, even when it’s not.
  38. There’s not a single place in Earth where no problems ever happen.
  39. We so much evil in the world, you shouldn’t be surprised if you hear that the Devil rules it.
  40. Grudge can be worse than misery.
  41. The judgement of something as “diabolical” or “divine” varies from person to person.
  42. World can be so cruel that it’s okay if someone thinks that the world is only there to be a source of frustration.
  43. Everyone wants to befriend a rich person.
  44. Treating small ailments can make you sick.
  45. A person can laugh out of anger.
  46. There are people who earn money criticizing others, to the point of needing to criticize flaws that do not exist.
  47. A bad hand is a proof of your bad luck in that game.
  48. Trash talking others is often a defense mechanism employed by those who want to feel important or accepted.
  49. If this is the best world possible, how come we sometimes can’t stand our own families?
  50. Money submits people.
  51. A person can kill another just to make others scared of disobeying.
  52. Some nations are so evil that it’s not worth it to touch their territory with your feet.
  53. A person can feel optimist when things are going good for them.
  54. If this is the best world possible, why people endure domestic violence from people they don’t even love?
  55. It’s risky to be an ill husband of a jealous wife who was trained in medicine.
  56. The life of a prostitute is far from easy.
  57. When a person seems to be feeling good all the time, maybe they are just good at hiding their sadness.
  58. There are unhappy people in religious temples too, often children who are forced to attend to church.
  59. A person will feel displeased with their job if their only criteria for picking that job was money.
  60. Giving money to a person won’t always improve someone’s condition and, in fact, it can even worsen that condition.
  61. Several bad experiences can make a person face life with cynism.
  62. A person may seen happy, despite not being so, because we don’t understand their suffering.
  63. Do not marry a person who has trouble controlling pride.
  64. Living too well causes boredom.
  65. A complex song that doesn’t sound good is a bad song.
  66. There are books that people buy without meaning to read them.
  67. While reading a book, you need to be aware of the possibility of an author being mistaken in his or her conclusion.
  68. You can’t learn anything from a person who puts everything in doubt, who doesn’t accept anything as right or wrong.
  69. You need to write what you think, not what people want you to think.
  70. If people don’t think like you, it’s not a big deal, just keep doing your thing.
  71. When you have high standards, you may deprive yourself of pleasure.
  72. A good stomach isn’t the one that rejects all food, but the one that rejects just bad food.
  73. Banker today, unemployed tomorrow.
  74. If this is the best world possible, the nation rulers were supposed to be the best possible, but not even them are safe from tragedy.
  75. No one’s safe.
  76. If this is the best possible world, how come tragedies come in sequence?
  77. One shouldn’t demand everyone to suffer equally when facing the same problems.
  78. Suffering is subjective, varies from to person to person.
  79. Suffering brings men together.
  80. If this is the best world possible, how come crimes aren’t punished proportionally?
  81. There are philosophers who continue to spread misinformation, knowing it’s misinformation, just because they don’t want to admit that they are wrong.
  82. The pessimistic person is more lucid and becomes frustrated less often.
  83. If you try a political career, remember you can die from it.
  84. Work is a good medicine against boredom, vice and need.
  85. Better have your own stuff thanks to your own effort.
  86. Men were born to work (to make his life easier by actions).

Publicado por Yure

Quando eu me formei, minha turma teve que fazer um juramento coletivo. Como minha religião não me permite jurar nem prometer, eu só mexi os lábios, mas resolvi viver com os objetivos do juramento em mente de qualquer forma.

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