Type of paper: Essay

Topic: People, Life, Attitude, Belief, Thinking, Ability, Understanding, Skills

Pages: 1

Words: 275

Published: 2021/02/16

The essay, “This is Water,” is a transcript of a commencement speech propounded by David Foster Wallace. The author delivered the inspirational speech to the graduating class of Kenyon College in 2005. The speech (in the form of essay here) propounds a strong motivating message about the actuality of how a regular adult life passes. The content of the essay is directly related to existing mind-set of the graduating students that illustrates real nuances of ‘surviving’ compared to ‘living’ life. Strictly speaking, the essay encourages the significance of ‘others’ (experienced people) in one’s life, in paying attention, making decision, and the impact of the associated consequences. Every choice a person made has its pros and cons connected to it that dictate positive or negative impact on the life of the individual. Wallace’s essay talks about the significance of shifting a person’s perception and discernment towards other people and the world around her or him. He argues empathetic approach to a person’s problems results in success and promising productivity, not only on the personal level but on the community level also.
One of the most important aspects that the author designates in this essay is the ability of a person to change her or his attitude towards others, which include her or his problems, sufferings, accomplishments etcetera. It is a well-known fact that the way a person thinks can have the major impact on her or his life. Wallace puts forward his philosophical approach in describing the importance of one’s vigour and understanding to deal and stand up with the sudden obstructions, and how the person behaves in such circumstances. For instance, he talks about the ‘natural default setting,’ which reflects an actual situation in which a person finds himself at all the times. The author describes the hurdles and obstructions that came in one’s way on daily basis, and which are unavoidable like traffic jams, rude people talking loudly on cell phones, crowded passages, and long check-out lines that make life miserable and depressed. Such thinking shows socially conscious attitude due to one’s own default setting. Most of the people think in this perspective, with this attitude only. But, does this mean that it is the only way that a person can follow or does a person has the ability to change his perception towards all these happenings? Wallace mentions other aspect of the people’s thinking that reflects sincere accountability of the people towards others (along the problems they may be suffering through). This approach is beyond the ‘natural default setting’ where a person makes himself accountable for repercussions of the society in a broader vision and thinks the way that everyone is suffering in her or his own way.
Every person has to deal with her or his own complications. Everyone has to address the consequences of her or his decisions. But, the way a person deals with her or his own problems is important as it dependents on the person’s attitude towards the society in a general way. There are people who have lost everything, right from their childhood but, have created history through their attitude and way of thinking. For example, Steve Jobs could be worth mentioning in such realm. He continues to lose everything but, despite of all his setbacks, he never gave up and never procures his ‘natural default setting.’ Such attitude is fruitful in understanding the actual meaning of living a life fully, not just surviving, along with the taste of success and appreciation of the surrounding world.
Wallace argues that people have the abilities to confront themselves with everlasting wisdom. “The freedom to be lords of our own tiny skull-sized kingdoms, alone at the centre of all creation” (Wallace, 11). His apt understanding of ‘real freedom’ involves a precise understanding of attention and awareness, accountability, discipline, kind attitude, and the unselfish ability of the people to help, and even sacrifice their wishes, for others.
Wallace proposes the importance of people’s thinking and attitude towards others and the surrounding world. His conception of accountability for positive thinking is quite inspirational. His vision is to inculcate an idea of constructive thinking and culpability among the adults that can benefit the whole community. Everyone is suffering. Every person has to deal with her or his own share of unavoidable problems. Also, most of the content of the essay elucidates the importance of one’s thinking to make big decisions, and the ability of the person to stand with the repercussions of the choices she or he makes. Everything is to be looked through positive sense that can facilitate the responsible attitude of the adults (people), to glorify their own persona and the community as well, and they would always think consistently and realize – “This is water, this is water.”

Works cited

Wallace, David Foster. This is Water. Little, Brown and Company. 2009

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WePapers. (2021, February, 16) This Is Water Essay Example. Retrieved July 06, 2022, from https://www.wepapers.com/samples/this-is-water-essay-example/
"This Is Water Essay Example." WePapers, 16 Feb. 2021, https://www.wepapers.com/samples/this-is-water-essay-example/. Accessed 06 July 2022.
WePapers. 2021. This Is Water Essay Example., viewed July 06 2022, <https://www.wepapers.com/samples/this-is-water-essay-example/>
WePapers. This Is Water Essay Example. [Internet]. February 2021. [Accessed July 06, 2022]. Available from: https://www.wepapers.com/samples/this-is-water-essay-example/
"This Is Water Essay Example." WePapers, Feb 16, 2021. Accessed July 06, 2022. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/this-is-water-essay-example/
WePapers. 2021. "This Is Water Essay Example." Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. Retrieved July 06, 2022. (https://www.wepapers.com/samples/this-is-water-essay-example/).
"This Is Water Essay Example," Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com, 16-Feb-2021. [Online]. Available: https://www.wepapers.com/samples/this-is-water-essay-example/. [Accessed: 06-Jul-2022].
This Is Water Essay Example. Free Essay Examples - WePapers.com. https://www.wepapers.com/samples/this-is-water-essay-example/. Published Feb 16, 2021. Accessed July 06, 2022.

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