The Art of Tetman Callis

Some of the stories and poems may be inappropriate for persons under 16

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Entries Tagged as 'William James'

June 4th, 2022 · No Comments

“Take the happiest man, the one most envied by the world, and in nine cases out of ten hisinmost consciousness is one of failure. Either his ideals in the line of his achievements are pitched far higher than the achievements themselves, or else he has secret ideals of which the world knows nothing, and in […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William James

April 6th, 2020 · No Comments

“Some men and women, indeed, there are who can live on smiles and the word ‘yes’ forever. But for others (indeed for most) this is too tepid and relaxed a moral climate. Passive happiness is slack and insipid, and soon grows mawkish and intolerable. Some austerity and wintry negativity, some roughness, danger, stringency, and effort, […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William James

Mox nix

April 14th, 2017 · No Comments

“If it can make no practical difference which of two statements be true, then they are really one statement in two verbal forms. If it can make no practical difference whether a given statement be true or false, then the statement has no real meaning.” – William James (quoted by George Scialabba in “Genuine Reality”) […]

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Tags: George Scialabba · Lit & Crit · William James

Cold sober and seeing straight

May 24th, 2013 · No Comments

“One can live only so long as one is intoxicated, drunk with life; but when one grows sober one cannot fail to see that it is all a stupid cheat. What is truest about it is that there is nothing even funny or silly in it; it is cruel and stupid, purely and simply.” — […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William James

He’s not the guy in the ad

May 13th, 2013 · No Comments

“Take the happiest man, the one most envied by the world, and in nine cases out of ten his inmost consciousness is one of failure. Either his ideals in the line of his achievements are pitched far higher than the achievements themselves, or else he has secret ideals of which the world knows nothing, and […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William James

Beyond god and evil

May 12th, 2013 · No Comments

“If we admit that evil is an essential part of our being and the key to the interpretation of our life, we load ourselves down with a difficulty that has always proved burdensome in philosophies of religion. Theism, whenever it has erected itself into a systematic philosophy of the universe, has shown a reluctance to […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William James

Probably closer than almost

April 21st, 2013 · No Comments

“Conceive yourself, if possible, suddenly stripped of all the emotion with which your world now inspires you, and try to imagine it as it exists, purely by itself, without your favorable or unfavorable, hopeful or apprehensive comment. It will be almost impossible for you to realize such a condition of negativity and deadness. No one […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William James

If at first you don’t fail, try, try again

April 20th, 2013 · No Comments

“Failure, then, failure! so the world stamps us at every turn. We strew it with our blunders, our misdeeds, our lost opportunities, with all the memorials of our inadequacy to our vocation. And with what a damning emphasis does it then blot us out! No easy fine, no mere apology or formal expiation, will satisfy […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William James

Failure any way you slice it

April 19th, 2013 · No Comments

“How can things so insecure as the successful experiences of this world afford a stable anchorage? A chain is no stronger than its weakest link, and life is after all a chain. In the healthiest and most prosperous existence, how many links of illness, danger, and disaster are always interposed? Unsuspectedly from the bottom of […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William James

Being a better person makes you a better person

April 18th, 2013 · No Comments

“It’s a favorite myth in our culture that hardship makes you a better person, that it is merely the grindstone on which your essence is refined and polished. But the truth is that scarcity, depression, thwarted ambition, and suffering most often leaves the person a little twisted. That is the territory where mean drunks and […]

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Tags: Jessa Crispin · Lit & Crit · William James

Toss me a lifejacket

April 18th, 2013 · No Comments

“[William] James is now a bit of an odd fellow in philosophy. More widely influential than widely known, his theory of pragmatism and his groundbreaking work in the field of psychology make him something of a hidden mover. If you do seek him out, it’s not generally in the way one reads Descartes or Kant […]

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Tags: Jessa Crispin · Lit & Crit · William James

The power of maybe

April 5th, 2013 · No Comments

“The ‘scientific’ life itself has much to do with maybes, and human life at large has everything to do with them. So far as man stands for anything, and is productive or originative at all, his entire vital function may be said to have to deal with maybes. Not a victory is gained, not a […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William James

Blind yourself with science!

April 4th, 2013 · 3 Comments

“Is it not sheer dogmatic folly to say that our inner interests can have no real connection with the forces that the hidden world may contain? In other cases divinations based on inner interests have proved prophetic enough. Take science itself! Without an imperious inner demand on our part for ideal logical and mathematical harmonies, […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William James

Those were the days

April 4th, 2013 · No Comments

“There were times when Leibnitzes with their heads buried in monstrous wigs could compose Theodicies, and when stall-fed officials of an established church could prove by the valves in the heart and the round ligament of the hip-joint the existence of a ‘Moral and Intelligent Contriver of the World.’  But those times are past.” – […]

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Tags: Lit & Crit · William James