Analyzing Character eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 399 pages of information about Analyzing Character.

The fundamental difficulty with the impractical man is two fold.  First, his powers of observation are so deficient that it is difficult for him to obtain facts.  It is an axiom of conscious life that there is pleasure and satisfaction in the use of well-developed powers and a disinclination to use powers which are deficient in development.  Because it is difficult for the impractical man to obtain facts, he has little desire to obtain them.  He takes little interest in them, does not appreciate their value.  He, therefore, assumes his facts, takes them for granted or proceeds almost wholly without them.  Even when he does take the trouble to ascertain the facts, he is inclined to be hasty and slipshod in his methods.  He, therefore does not obtain all of the necessary information bearing upon his problem.  He does not painstakingly verify his knowledge through repeated observations, under all kinds of conditions.  So he is frequently mistaken and reasons to his conclusions upon supposed facts which are not facts at all.

Second, the impractical man, as a general rule, has well-developed powers of reason, logic, and imagination.  His mind easily and unerringly leaps from premises to conclusion and weaves long and beautiful chains of reasoning, each link perfectly formed.  The only trouble is that none of the chains are attached to anything solid and substantial at either end.  With highly developed powers of imagination, it follows that the impractical man loves to dream, to build castles in the air.  When he attempts to form a judgment or reach a conclusion, he may possibly begin by attempting to ascertain the facts.  But observation for him is a slow and painful process.  He does not enjoy it.  He has no patience with it.  Mere facts restrict him.  Practical reasoning is like walking painfully, step by step, along a narrow, steep pathway, leading to a fixed destination at which the traveler arrives whether he wills it or not.  The impractical man’s form of reasoning, starting at the same place, soars into the air, dips and sweeps in magnificent and inspiring curves and finally sets him down at whatever destination seems most desirable to him.  His well-developed powers of imagination are usually more than willing to supply the deficiencies in his powers of observation.  In his own realm he is a valuable member of society—­often becomes rich and famous.  But he is a misfit in any vocation which deals wholly with concrete things.


The impractical man is easily recognized.  He may be blonde or brunette, large or small, fine textured or coarse textured, energetic or lazy, aggressive or mild, friendly or unfriendly, ambitious or unambitious, honest or dishonest—­but his mark is upon his forehead.  If his brows are flat or if his forehead immediately above and at the sides of his eyes is undeveloped or only a little developed, his powers of observation are deficient.  He is not interested in facts and his judgment is based upon hasty and mistaken premises.  As a general rule, in such cases, the upper part of the forehead is well developed.  This is always the case if the man is intelligent.  If the forehead is both low and retreating and flat at the brows, then the individual lacks both power of observation and reasoning power, and is very deficient in intellect.

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Analyzing Character from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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