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Top comments that mention products on r/SeriousConversation:

u/dvs · 2 pointsr/SeriousConversation

Your friend is not wrong, but he's only half right. He's also framing how one deals with the negative aspects of life poorly. One should do their best to minimize the bad in life, or at least its effects. And, when possible, turn allegedly negative things to one's advantage. One should also do their best to maximize the positive aspects. A lot of it has to do with your perspective and what you focus on.

Everyone has to support themselves somehow. If the only available work is something unpleasant or undesirable, focus on what it affords you and put effort toward getting into a line of work you appreciate more. You can't prevent yourself from ever getting sick, but you can do everything in your power to stay healthy. Healthy eating, an active lifestyle, and getting regular medical checkups all have their benefits. If someone assaults you and you are permanently injured, you're going to have to cope with that, yes. But I'm sure any school worth attending will make accommodations for a student who was assaulted presuming they were made aware of the circumstances.

So, yes, you will have to learn how to cope with the bad things. But you also need to learn how to maximize the positive. Work towards a career you enjoy. Build friendships. Chase your dreams. All that. People tend to write off encouragement and positive thinking, and focus on the negative. But life is what you focus on.

If you struggle with this, I have a few recommended reads for you.

  • Victor Frankl's "Man's Search For Meaning". He was a holocaust survivor, and he writes about how even if you take everything else away from a person, they still have the freedom to choose how they react to their circumstances. If prisoners in a concentration camp can find ways to be generous and kind to one another and bring joy and love to each other, so can you.

  • Dr. David M. Burns' "Feeling Good". One of the first books written on Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), it's written in such a way that the reader can apply these therapeutic techniques to their own life. The premise is that our thoughts direct our feelings, and by learning to recognize cognitive distortions and correct our thinking, we can make large headway in dealing with depression. CBT subreddits and posts

  • Seneca "Letters from a Stoic", Epictetus "The Art of Living", Marcus Aurelius "Meditations". Three books by Stoic philosophers. Stoicism was to these ancient Greek and Roman philosophers what CBT is to modern psychologists. These three books contain some of the very best summaries of this school of philosophy. This isn't esoteric, inaccessible philosophy. This is wisdom directly applicable to the very sort of problem you and your friend are dealing with. /r/Stoicism

    I know this was an overly long response to your question, but I hope it helps. Learning how to cope well with life is one of the most important things a person can learn. I wish you, and your friend, well.

u/Proteus-aeruginosa · 2 pointsr/SeriousConversation

I went through some stuff earlier this year and I started bullet journaling. It’s not like a diary (unless you want it to be), it’s more like a daily schedule/planner for some people. It’s called a bullet journal because instead of standard lined paper you use paper that’s dotted, like this one.

I did a daily mood tracker, planned trips, planned what I needed to do before adopting a dog, favorite motivational quotes, personal values in life, future plans, etc. I used colorful pens, stickers, and washi tape to make it pretty and fun.

I basically used this to get to know myself better and I’m in a much better place now than I was before. I don’t use it as much now, but I still use it when I think of a page/spread I want to do. There’s a subreddit, but most of my inspiration came from Pinterest.

Good luck getting to know yourself better, I wish you the best!

u/whattodo-whattodo · 3 pointsr/SeriousConversation

> You often say oh hypocrite Americans you are all a bunch of immigrants let them all in you benefited from it

In terms of immigration, I think that you've missed the point. The reason that Americans are criticized for the current stance on illegal immigration is not because Americans benefited from it. It's because Americans created it.

1942 - USA creates the Bracero program. A short term program to allow immigrant laborers into the US to take low level jobs that soldiers would leave behind. Immigrant laborers would be the equivalent of indentured servants & would receive citizenship after 20 years of work. Scheduled to be terminated at the end of WWII.

1945 - WWII ends. Soldiers come back & don't want those jobs. Local farmers also don't want the American soldiers. This semi-slavery program means that these farmers won't slip up (even once) for risk of losing their shot at becoming Americans. The program is extended indefinitely.

Interim A lot happens between here and 2000. Noriega, United Fruit, Panama Canal - the list is long. The US regularly arms militias in South America for personal gain. Every country has a different story but the net result is that the US uses economical levers to profit from and keep countries controlled. I'm not going to go into detail but if you actually want detail "Confessions of an Economic Hitman" goes into more than you can stomach.

1969 - The US officially terminates the program. This part is key because it is now illegal but encouraged by the government & wanted by the employers.

  1. Laborers can still come into the country (illegally) to work, but they are not promised citizenship.

  2. Labor laws are pretty much suspended. Minimum wage does not apply to those who are not legally here. Labor laws. Even common laws (like rape) are mostly handled by deporting the victim.

  3. The US continues to use economic practices to keep a steady supply of laborers. In particular, Mexican politicians who are favorable to the US gain power while others are either black balled or just disappear.

    1986 - US grants amnesty to many of the undocumented residents. Taking ownership of the half century of exploitation & promising to end it.

    1989 - US grants amnesty to others who were not included but should have been

    1989 - 2001 - It's about as neutral as it gets. The US does nothing to crack down on immigration but it also doesn't provoke the issue.

    2001 9/11 attacks change everything for the US. It now needs to monitor and protect it's borders to assure that contraband isn't coming through & it can't do that with a lax policy.


    So, do you need to support something that you benefited from? You certainly don't need to support continuing it. But that thing you benefited from didn't just appear in a vacuum. It was probably created. And if it was created by someone or something (like a country) which you do support, then I do think that you can't completely disavow what happened when it stops being convenient.

    Edit - Added references
u/SpiritWolfie · 2 pointsr/SeriousConversation

Well sometimes you have to just chill and let things be for awhile. I would suggest working on yourself for a period of time. You can look at these situations and try to see your part in them, where did you go wrong, what could you have done differently, what different actions could you have taken that may have led to a different outcome?

I've done this myself for years and it's helped me deal with difficult relationships. Asking those types of empowering questions can often unlock parts of our behavior that we were previously blind to or didn't realize their effects on other people.

I used to blindly react to people. I was very much in a mode of trigger/response and sometimes my reactions would deeply hurt or offend the other person and when I'd try to repair the damage, often it was just too late and they were done with me. Years later I was able to revisit many of these relationships (as part of the recovery process in AA) and make amends to these people.

These amends are not about me accepting 100% blame for what went wrong....not at all. But as they say, "It takes 2 to tango" which means that I had a part to play in things going to shit and I need to take responsibility for my part, apologize where needed, and clean up my side of the street.

All of this is done without any expectation of response from the other party and very often in AA we hear stories of people doing this and the other party still doesn't forgive, still doesn't want anything to do with the other person and still wants to fight. However we do the amends for us so that WE can let go of our part knowing we did the best we could to repair the situation.

If I've done this properly, I can forgive myself for not being perfect, for being only human (not superhuman) and go on with my life knowing that I've done the best I could to repair a bad situation. Sometimes this has actually lead to some really cool things happening with these relationships and a healing on both sides. It's quite an amazing thing to watch unfold but again, I can't have any expectation of cool shit happening or I'll get pissed if cool shit doesn't happen and that's NOT why I making the amends. I'm making the amends for me....because I want to be happy, joyous and free and I simply can't be if I've got unresolved shit in my life.

If you're looking for some additional resources here's a book that approaches it from a non-AA stand point. The book is all about learning techniques for resolving conflict in a healthy way. Very often this isn't taught in schools and people don't know these techniques but they can be learned.

Hope that helps and I wish you all the best.

u/chase1635321 · 2 pointsr/SeriousConversation

Readings on Metaethics

  • Beginners Book (Normative ethics, not metaethics): Russ Shafer-Landau The Fundamentals of Ethics
  • Short article overview of metaethics:
  • Short article on moral realism:
  • Short article on anti-realism:
  • Metaethics overview book: Andrew Fisher's Metaethics: An Introduction. 2011.
  • Metaethics in depth book: Mark van Roojen's Metaethics: A Contemporary Introduction. 2015
  • Metaethics Youtube Playlist:
  • More recommendations on the philosophy reddit

    Defenses of God/Christianity

  • William Lane Craig is essentially the Christian counterpart to Sam Harris. If you haven't heard of the cosmological argument, fine tuning, etc he's a good place to start. Not a great destination though if you're looking for something in depth and I don't think some of his arguments work in the end.
  • Alvin Plantinga is a philosopher known for his contributions to modality, and is also a Christian. He's written some books on his faith, including "Warranted Christian Belief". He's basically the Christian counterpart to Daniel Dennent.
  • David Bentley Hart is what I would consider the Christian counterpart to Nietzsche. His book "Beauty of the Infinite" is written in a similar style and has a long discussion of the will to power. That book is pretty dense though. An easier starting point is "The Experience of God: Being, Consciousness, Bliss". Which attempts to disentangle an informed view of God from the somewhat corrupted popular conception of it. He has also written a response to the new atheists called "Atheist Delusions"
  • Edward Feser is probably my favorite on this list. He's written good intros to the Philosophy of Mind and to Aquinas. He defends the existence of God in "Five Proofs of the Existence of God". His magnum opus, however, is probably "Aristotle's Revenge: The Metaphysical Foundations of Physical and Biological Science". This book is a (dense) defense of Neo-Aristotelian metaphysics, which is central to his defense of the existence of God. He has also written an intro to Scholastic Metaphysics, and a response to the new atheists called "The Last Superstition"

    Many of the people listed above have done interviews and talks if you're not inclined to read an entire book.

    Let me know if this does/doesn't help or if I should narrow the list.
u/BrianW1983 · 1 pointr/SeriousConversation

Here are my 5 best ways to beat anxiety and depression.

1.) Get this book. It's a classic self-help book that's scientifically proven to beat depression. It's the #1 self-help book recommended by doctors in the United States. You can get it for free at your local library

2.) Meditate. Download the free "Insight Timer" meditation app or do YouTube ocean sounds while wearing headphones. It rewires your brain after 6 weeks.

3.) Live in the present moment. When your mind wanders on anxious thoughts, bring it back to the present moment. Over and over again.

4.) Pray and practice a religion. This will benefit you greatly. Start going to religious services.

5.) Exercise 5 days a week. Try to exercise for at least 30 minutes at a time. Something where you build up a sweat.

Good luck and keep in touch.

u/Criticalthinking346 · 1 pointr/SeriousConversation

I also liked the dude and the zen master. Probably wasn’t taken seriously but the “dude” character is my spirt animal 😂

I recently got zen and the art of motorcycle maintenance . I haven’t started it yet but I love Zen and motorcycles so should go over well with me

u/Abstracting_You · 3 pointsr/SeriousConversation

No one can really tell you how best to heal, we can only tell you how we have done it and hope it works for you.

For me, it's two things.

The first is connecting with others. Realizing that while I have lost a part of my life forever, there are still many many more parts that exist and fulfill me. Reconnecting with people, seeing then ones I currently hang out with, etc. Being around people helps remind me that I'm not alone and that there are other people out there.

The second thing that helps me is reading about how others have dealt with loss and their own methods of grief. In particular, I suggest this book by Joan Didion. She lost her husband and then had to take care of her daughter a month later after she suffered a major brain injury. Didion's writing and research paint grief in a new light for me, not necessarily positive, but necessary.

I hope you read the book, it really helped me, and I suggest it to everyone I can in these situations. It helps for some and doesn't for others.

Good luck, I hope you find what works for you.

u/MisterDrProf · 1 pointr/SeriousConversation

Well you can grab the starter set for pretty darn cheap and that gives you a bunch of stuff to start out.

The way I always describe it is dnd is that it's the logical conclusion of the pretend games we play as kids. It still allows for you to become a magical hero or whatever, but it has enough rules so your asshole friend can't have his everything-proof shield.

From there each game is different. Some people like to be good guys, others villains, some find a gray area in between. It's mostly just role playing in imagination so you can do literally anything. One player I know likes to use a rope that she covers in tar, lights on fire, and animates with magic. Another simply talks his way out of most fights.

There are tons of rpgs like dnd as well. Some are designed for Scifi others for modern day. I'm currently running a game in the star wars universe.

I high recommend checking it out.

u/mikkylock · 8 pointsr/SeriousConversation

Yes, and it helped me a lot. So if you are interested in starting on your own, you can read this book by Dr. David Burns. There's also a workbook or two depending on what you prefer.

CBT is all about learning how to change the way you think. Basically it's becoming actively involved in your thinking and feeling patterns. It is a good thing to do this with a therapist, because having an objective viewer on your thought processes is invaluable. That said, it doesn't hurt to get started on your own.

u/ophel1a_ · 2 pointsr/SeriousConversation

This book helped me and is still helping me. I think it can help you, too. Find Jordan Peterson on YouTube and listen to some of his interviews. :)

u/RandomBattles · 1 pointr/SeriousConversation

I was in the same boat. Read this: Literally half of the book is about how to do reflective listening. That alone changed my life. And the more you learn genuine social skills like that, the more you'll realize everyone has no idea what they're doing and they're lucky to be making their way through life at all.

DO NOT USE DATING APPS!!! They heavily favor women and you'll just be running into getting tens of rejections a day. Dating apps are for women. Not men.

Every college has a ballroom dance club. Join it.

u/lurkthrw · 2 pointsr/SeriousConversation

Sex being center of our life is ruining everything. Well, we are not first humans on Earth and this is not a way to live a good life, it was discovered through ages again and again.

u/--geode · 1 pointr/SeriousConversation

Read this, I just started it and it has a really shockingly interesting perspective on modern ennui (which is what you're going through):

u/Cultured_Giraffe · 2 pointsr/SeriousConversation

I can only agree,

Read Francis Fukyama's book on identity politics:


The segregration we experience is dividing us al up into smaller and smaller subgroups. The fear of being labelled and the fear of prejudice, doesn't prevent that labelling and prejudice are also present in these subgroups.

The way popular psychology has shaped public opinion on what makes the individual, is interesting as well. The whole idea of subconciousness and of being subconsciously unaware of other peoples situation (which implies guilt and a need for education), has become a mental and moral noose. A tool of coersion and shaming.