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The Tyranny of the Perfect Life

Chasing A Perfect Paradise

Dictators from history had an ideal world in mind that would last. But their dreams were never realized, and instead left catastrophic destruction behind.

We are unable to plan a perfect life without also fully understanding the complexity of life. Things we think we want now might be different from what we want in the near future.

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The Tyranny of the Perfect Life

The Tyranny of the Perfect Life

https://medium.com/the-polymath-project/the-tyranny-of-the-perfect-life-9673546b19af

medium.com

6

Key Ideas

The Perfect Day

Life is always more out of our control than we would prefer it to be. Even with the most meticulous planning, the perfect day only shows up now and then.

If we were to have a perfect day every day, it would quickly become just another normal part of our experience. Then we would need a new fantasy to take its place.

The Quest for Uniformity

Similar to the desire for the perfect day, an ideal life can mean enforcing a rigid uniformity that does more harm than good.

Chasing utopian dreams never takes us exactly where we want to go, because ideas change, people change, and new technologies develop.

Chasing A Perfect Paradise

Dictators from history had an ideal world in mind that would last. But their dreams were never realized, and instead left catastrophic destruction behind.

We are unable to plan a perfect life without also fully understanding the complexity of life. Things we think we want now might be different from what we want in the near future.

Incoherency of a Utopia

We believe people have many needs and values that can come together in perfect harmony. We think, under the right conditions, education, technology and political systems, we can completely solve all our problems.

But we have to stop and consider these questions: What if our values and needs contradict each other? What, if we gain somewhere, we will lose somewhere else?

Needs or Values

Choosing one way of life means giving up many others. A desire for privacy is at odds with convenience tools like Google and Facebook. Long-term travel will mean being lonely at times.

It is not possible to combine a diversity of forms of life within a single person.

The 'Perfect Life'

Obsessing over the idea of having a perfect life where you compress yourself into a focused point, means that you will suffer from tunnel-vision. Tunnel-vision means that you will miss much of life.

The perfect life is always around the corner, but the decent life is right here already if you can stop for long enough to see it.

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