Sunday, October 10, 2010

The Socrates Triple Filter Test

In ancient Greece, Socrates was reputed to hold knowledge in high esteem.

One day an acquaintance met the great philosopher and said, "Do you know what I just heard about your friend?"

Hold on a minute," Socrates replied. "Before telling me anything, I'd like you to pass a little test. It's called the Triple Filter Test."

Triple filter?"

That's right," Socrates continued. "Before you talk to me about my friend, it might be a good idea to take a moment and filter what you're going to say. That's why I call it the triple filter test.

The first filter is TRUTH. Have you made absolutely sure that what you are about to tell me is true?"

No," the man said, "actually I just heard about it and..."

All right," said Socrates. "So you don't really know if it's true or not. Now let's try the second filter, the filter of GOODNESS. Is what you are about to tell me about my friend something good?"

No, on the contrary..."

So," Socrates continued, "you want to tell me something bad about him, but you're not certain it's true. You may still pass the test though, because there's one filter left: the filter of USEFULNESS. Is what you want to tell me about my friend going to be useful to me?"

No, not really."

Well," concluded Socrates, "if what you want to tell me is neither true nor good nor even useful, why tell it to me at all?"

This is why Socrates was a great philosopher & held in such high esteem. Friends, use this triple filter each time you hear loose talk about any of your near & dear friends.

Friday, October 1, 2010

One on the most convincing pieces on happiness.


Having lived a reasonably contented life, I was musing over what a person should strive for to achieve happiness. I drew up a list of a few essentials which I put forward for the readers' appraisal.

1. First and foremost is GOOD HEALTH. If you do not enjoy good health you can never be happy. Any ailment, however trivial, will deduct from your happiness.

2. Second, A HEALTHY BANK BALANCE. It need not run into crores but should be enough to provide for creature comforts and something to spare for recreation, like eating out, going to the pictures, travelling or going on holidays on the hills or by the sea. Shortage of money can be only demoralizing. Living on credit or borrowing is demeaning and lowers one in one's own eyes.

3. Third, A HOME OF YOUR OWN. Rented premises can never give you the snug feeling of a nest which is yours for keeps that a home provides: if it has a gar den space, all the better. Plant your own trees and flowers, see them grow and blossom, cultivate a sense of kinship with them.

4. Fourth, AN UNDERSTANDING COMPANION, be it your spouse or a friend. If there are too many misunderstandings, they will rob you of your peace of mind. It is better to be divorced than to bicker all the time.

5. Fifth, LACK OF ENVY towards those who have done better than you in life; risen higher, made more money, or earned more fame. Envy can be very corroding; avoid comparing yourself with others.

6. Sixth, DO NOT ALLOW OTHER PEOPLE to descend on you for gup-shup. By the time you get rid of them, you will feel exhausted and poisoned by their gossip-mongering.

7. Seventh, CULTIVATE SOME HOBBIES which can bring you a sense of fulfilment, such as gar dening, re adi ng, writing, painting, playing or listening to music. Going to clubs or parties to get free drinks or to meet celebrities is criminal waste of time.

8. Eighth, every morning and evening, devote 15 minutes to INTROSPECTION. In the morning, 10 minutes should be spent on stilling the mind and then five in listing things you have to do that day. In the evening, five minutes to still the mind again, and ten to go over what you had undertaken to do.

RICHNESS is not Earning More, Spending More Or Saving More, but ...