The Point of it All - A Lifetime of Great Loves and Endeavors
Charles Krauthammer
Contributed by Jerrold Mcmenamin
Chapter 7
Summary

Chapter 7: Look Outward

This chapter is on a speech given by the author addressing McGill University’s Class of 1993. The author is giving the students some advice on real-life situations. He divides his approach into three parts. The first part is about the panic caused by people who predict the future. The author talks about the nuclear war that people believed would cause the end of the world. The end did not come and still, people have come to predict on the doomsday. Krauthammer believes that such occasions should not cause of unnecessary panic as they are often predicted wrongly (Krauthammer 125-126).

For the second lesson, Krauthammer talks about self-examination and looking outward. He talks about the phrase “love thyself, then love thy neighbor” (127). He believes that the phrase uses the wrong approach. This is because people spend a lot of time trying to learn to love themselves and it may be too late for them to love others. Therefore, he thinks that it is best for people to examine their lives with dispatch and modesty. He asserts, “The dictum for this age should not be that the unexamined life is not worth living, but rather that the unlived life is not worth examining” (129).

The last lesson is about saving the best. The author wants his audience to learn to coexist together without causing any uproar motivated by the diversity of the people. He talks about the models of the US and Canada saying that people find it easy to come to America considering the harmony and the way people have learned to coexist together (Krauthammer 129-130).

Analysis

This is a speech directed to a graduating class. The message is a great way of preparing students before they go out to the world. The first part on panics and false predictions of the end of the world is relevant and very informative. The world today has many people creating stories about the apocalypse and this often raises concerns and fear. However, Krauthammer is empowering his audience into choosing calmness in such occasions since most of the predictions are usually false, and he wants the people to work hard with the hope of a better future. He then talks about love and self-examination since they are concepts affecting most people today. The author understands that loving oneself may take long but loving one’s neighbor is important. After that, he shifts to coexistence, which is a result of love. When people learn to love each other, they can coexist amicably and without discrimination. The author understands that love is paramount and important in many things, and he is using it as a solution to the different problems experienced in the world.

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