[lit-ideas] Re: a million little pieces

  • From: Robert Paul <robert.paul@xxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Mon, 16 Jan 2006 19:58:26 -0800

Eric wrote re 'will power':

Speak for yourself. Will power is very useful in changing all kinds of behavior patterns. In the meantime, as a psychoanalytic sidebar, consider Otto Rank's _Will Therapy_.

This may be. But appeals to will power, and willing in general, have the disadvantage of ignoring such common phenomena as trying but failing. It's by no means clear that mere willing will get everyone where he or she wants to get, or would like to get, and it's depressing to hear that people who try but fail 'just haven't tried hard enough.' (Eric did not say this.) The qualifier 'enough' inevitably makes such criticism cum advice impossible to rebut, even where rebuttal is justified.

Robert Paul
Reed College
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