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An inspiring look at how to avoid misery through other-centered awareness

May 8, 2013 By Abraham

In a 2005 commencement speech which has here been turned into a poignant little film, David Foster Wallace urges graduating seniors of Kenyon College to escape the self-focused interpretation of reality that we all default to — “the automatic way that [we] experience the boring, frustrating, crowded parts of adult life” — and to instead consciously perceive a reality where everyone else is as important as ourselves…


  1. steven Hassell says:

    I am glade I already think like this, and for the most part have for the last 15 years, self-awareness is the key to being happy, every thing is a mater of perspective

  2. Bartleby the Scrivener says:

    It’s not the waiting in line (et al) that bothers me. It’s when the other people are inconsiderate and make my chores take longer and/or more difficult to accomplish through their inconsideration that grows frustrating. The rest…that’s part of life. I don’t mind lines or shopping. That’s part of the why I live and not just part of the how.

  3. Carol says:

    I don’t usually get into this kind of jargon. I like this because I have been in that mentality for a long time. If I remember “This is water” when I am busy with my default thinking, (I hate society, I dislike people so very much, I have contempt for these people, they’re all in my damn way, close your face you mouth-breather) I may have a chance to change into a happier person without having changed a single aspect of my surroundings.

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