“Romantics” get a bad generalization rap. Usually the extra adjective “hopeless” gets attached to them—as in, hopeless to avoid colliding with pain, disappointment and disillusionment.
The conventional thinking is that the more romantic one’s outlook, the more one is likely to become emotionally distraught because the world ultimately undermines romanticism. As usual, I’d like to flip the convention on its head—or at least on its side.
What if romanticism was actually a gradually-cultivated yearning for what is the truest nature of things in the midst of our broken, temporal nature?
From this perspective, romanticism would not be a pathway that leads to pain but a deliberate, conscious effort to persevere through existing, ubiquitous pain in order to tap into an energy and hope that is not bound to situational volatility. Romanticism, then, just might be the antidote for a world sick and malnourished by tacit acceptance of mediocrity and festering narcissism born of insecurity.
Acceptance of the way things are must always be accompanied by a vision of what they could be, in order for any person, organization or movement to continue to grow in a healthy fashion. Many romantics might inadvertently bypass the “acceptance of the way things are” part, and thus find themselves dismissed as na