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drifting into an error against which I warned the reader,--of making an entity of a conception. People are
patient or impatient, but not necessarily throughout. There are men and women who fuss and fume over trifles
who never falter or fret when their larger purposes are blocked or deferred. Some cannot stand detail who plan
wisely and with patience. Vice versa, there are meticulous folk, little people, whose petty obstacles are met
with patience and cheerfulness, who revel in minute detail, but who want returns soon and cannot wait a long
time. We are not to ask of any man whether he is patient but rather what does he stand or do patiently? What
renders him impatient?
A form of impatience of enormous social importance is that which manifests itself in cure-alls. A man finds
that his will overcomes some obstacles. Eager to apply this, he announces that will cures all ills. Impatient of
evil, men seek to annihilate it by denying its existence or by loudly chanting that good thoughts will destroy it.
These are typical impatient solutions in the sphere of religion; in the sphere of economics men urge
nationalization, free trade, som or laissez faire, or some law or other to change social structure and
human nature. War itself is the most impatient and consequently most socially destructive method of the
methods of the treatment of evil.
While patience is a virtue, it may also be a vice. One may bear wrongs too patiently or defer satisfaction too
long. One meets every day men and women who help injustice and iniquity by their patience. We are too
patient, at least with the wrongs of others; perhaps we really do not feel this intensely or for any length of
time. In fact, the difficulty with most of the preaching of life is its essential insincerity, for it counsels patience
for that which it feels but little. We bear the troubles of others, on the whole, very well. Nevertheless, there
are Griseldas everywhere whom one would respect far more if they rebelled against their tyrants and
taskmasters. Organized wrong and oppression owe their existence mainly to the habitual patience of the
oppressed. To be meek and mild and...
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This note was uploaded on 09/26/2011 for the course PSYCHOLOGY 110 taught by Professor Kannan during the Spring '11 term at Anna University Chennai - Regional Office, Coimbatore.
- Spring '11