“Our capacity to tolerate error depends on our capacity to tolerate emotion.”
I came across this quote in Kathryn Schulz’s excellent Being Wrong, a study of what it is like to discover we no longer believe things that we used to be believe. (“I used to believe that meeting was at 8 AM. I now believe it was at 6 AM. I also believe I wasn’t there.”) There’s at least three ideas directly from that book that I want to write about, but this one is somewhat tangential and also the most troublesome.
At first glance, I thought, “That makes sense. It’s hard to tolerate unpleasant emotions.” But as I thought about it, I realized that it’s not just the unpleasant ones that I’ve seen myself and others shy away from: it’s the intense ones.
When was the last time you let yourself be estatically happy? Feel unalloyed joy?