To the “realist” in my life:
What does that really mean, when you throw that out? Two people can be presented with the exact same set of facts and interpret those facts completely differently. This would suggest that “reality” is subjective; that it involves an element of choice, whether consciously made or not. One may naturally hone in on those facts that shed a positive light while another may see those that are negative. It is that choice that defines us as either an optimist or a pessimist. A true realist is, by definition, neutral. The willingness, and more importantly the ABILITY, to see both the good and the bad is at the heart of what realism means. I’ve never met a person who claimed to be a realist who could convincingly argue that they possessed this ability. I’m inclined to think that the very term “realist” is just a way to render more credible the particular lenses through which you view the world. I am not a half-wit because I am an optimist, just as you are not an asshole because you are a pessimist. We are our souls, our minds and the sum of our experiences…and that’s okay.