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Giving comfort under affliction requires that penetration into the human mind, joined to that experience which knows how to... Options
Daemon
Posted: Friday, August 3, 2012 12:00:00 AM
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Giving comfort under affliction requires that penetration into the human mind, joined to that experience which knows how to soothe, how to reason, and how to ridicule; taking the utmost care never to apply those arts improperly.

Henry Fielding (1707-1754)
MTC
Posted: Friday, August 3, 2012 2:28:51 AM
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Sometimes a simple hug will do.
Lilliy090987
Posted: Friday, August 3, 2012 4:29:43 AM

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okay...
excaelis
Posted: Friday, August 3, 2012 9:11:40 AM

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I don't think I'd want Fielding hugging me.
stan_n
Posted: Friday, August 3, 2012 2:13:43 PM
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With all my respect to Mr. Fielding, but (in my view) if one (good-intentioned) person wants to really comfort another, then the former one should at least know what problem (or problems) have upset the latter person and how to solve them. Otherwise it is quite deceptive and hypocritical to try to comfort a person whitout knowing the cause of his (or her) grief.



Also, I take it that all kinds of ridicule should be totally avoided when trying to soothe someone (if we are well-intentioned towards that person).
MTC
Posted: Friday, August 3, 2012 8:05:35 PM
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Stan said:

"Also, I take it that all kinds of ridicule should be totally avoided when trying to soothe someone (if we are well-intentioned towards that person)."

This is the puzzling part of Fielding's quotation; how ridicule can comfort. I think Fielding meant that ridiculing the source of the affliction would provide comfort--not ridiculing the person one attempts to comfort: for example, "Yes, I know his words may have wounded you, but consider what a ridiculous person he really is."
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