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"Inspiration does not come to the lazy. It only comes to those who call it." - P. I. Tchaikovsky


This story is a sequel to One on One Philosophy with Discord

Warning: The following you're about to read contains philosophy in plain English and is currently unedited. If you do not like one or both of these, you know where the exit button is.

Years after Starlight Glimmer becomes the new Headmare of the School of Friendship and Twilight ruling over Equestria, Discord is still teaching useful philosophy classes. Although he is known for his unusual teaching methods, there have been rumors that he may have to take a liking to Professor Fluttershy. However, that rumor was never confirmed in any way.

That was, until one Summer when Discord put up the offer for a surprising class in the felid of Philosophy. The subject was about love. Even with Discord promoting the class, one question is raised: why?

Lesson Plan:

Lesson 1 - What is Romanticism ✅
Lesson 2 - On Being Single ✅
Lesson 3 - On Dating
Lesson 4 - Challenges of Marriage
Lesson 5 - Why Do Some Have Affairs
Lesson 6 - When to Leave
Lesson 7 - How to Fall in Love... Again

List of Students and Status:

Fluttershy - Single
Sandbar - Dating
Gallus - Single
Ocellus - Dating
Smolder - Dating
Yona - Dating
Silverstream - Single
Cadence - Married
Shining Armor - Married
Starlight - Dating
Trixie - Dating
Braeburn - Married
Applejack - Married
Rainbow Dash - Married
Big Mac - Married
Sugar Belle - Married
Ms. Harshwhinny - Single
Spoiled Rich - Married (Divorced?)
Filthy Rich - Married (Divorced?)
Fleur de Lis - Dating
Fancy Pants - Dating
Troubleshoes - Married
Soarin - Single
Lyra - Married
Sweetie Drops - Married
Mr. Cake - Married
Mrs. Cake - Married
Miss. Cheerliee - Single
Twilight - Single
Rarity - Single

Chapters (5)
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Comments ( 28 )

This has potential. You should submit this to the Pride and Positivity 2020 Event.

Not what I originally intended for, but then again... the lessons that Discord is going to teach is important regardless of what one is attracted to. I'll give it a try if it means to give it and the lessons some exposure. Because the info I found that I'm trying to write in, I genuinely believe is helpful to so many out there.

The problem with love is everyone expects everything the Romantic Discord said... but unfortunately it is impossible... human nature directly contradicts this "Unbreakable bond of pure understanding" so many people THINK they are getting into.

True love is standing by your partner through hardship and despair, mostly self inflicted... yet the romantic in myself tells me it would be worth it (despite having all personal evidence to the contrary)

I'm interested to see what a philosophy major thinks of this, on a question that has been destroying lives for hundreds of years. On something Philosophy majors, themselves, have been disagreeing with, for as long as marriage has been done for love.

Fortunately for me, I'm going to do what I can to dive deeper into this subject by dissecting the problems of Romanticism with a modern lens. Regardless of who you are, and the one you want to spend your life with, you're going to run into some troubles. What I'm planning to do is to give one a map of what one can expect out of love with all its complexities - and more importantly, what possible solutions that can be offered.

I quite like this story, I’m going to be very interested reading it.

Personally, those Romanticism ideas are nice end goals, but completely unfeasible for the start of a relationship. Basically, they're an overcorrection from what had been the norm prior. Still off, but at least the attempted spirit is back in line with Biblical teaching (no adultery, for instance).

I don't know if this idea of "looking for something similar to family" is accurate, unless "yourself" counts (not in the narcissistic way mind you). The few times I've come close to feeling something for someone else, that was the mirror I was noticing, which is quite different from either of my parents or my sister. But in my case, I feel the bigger reasons are that 1. I haven't actively looked yet, and 2. I don't believe myself ready for that kind of responsibility, not even close. Given how I still struggle with maintaining habits like teeth, showering, or periodic clothes washing, that's not just fear talking.

Perhaps that is the wisest course of action, in that it is better to not rush into a relationship until one is certain that the one they find most appealing is right for them, then to go into one blindly. The point of this chapter is that there's no shame in being single, yet it is also important to recognize one's own character and identify carefully what one is looking for before making that big decision. In other words, find the one you can love in the long term responsibly.

The problem with Romanticism is that it created a high standard that while beautiful, it never specifically laid out how to reach those ideals. When the Romantics came up with these ideas about love, they had a noble cause, but they were so blinded to this new and exciting outlook that they didn't pave the way to said goals and assumed that everyone will simply get there by instinct. Which is kinda as ridiculous as saying you're going to perform brain surgery by going with what your gut says.

Or to very loosely quote that one line from Jurassic Park:

"I'll tell you the problem with this Romantic power you lot are using: It didn't take any discipline to obtain it. You know, you read what others have done and you took the next step! None of you earned the knowledge of what love is like for yourselves, so none of you take any responsibility for it. You stood on the shoulders of your crushes, and before you really knew what's going on, you glorified it, wrote it down as fast as you could, published it, slapped it on every bookshelf, and now - you're selling it! You're selling it! Well..."

"Mr. Inkwell, I don't think you're giving us our due credit. Our artists, writers, and poets are exploring a new kind of love that has never been done before."

"Yeah, but you were so preoccupied with whether or not you could that none of you have stopped to think if you should!"

I don't think this advice would work in the real world, unless both parties are already on the same page.

A first date where the person does nothing but talk about their flaws? That doesn't sound like something that would trigger a second date.

On a date, people tend to think that the best way to prove attractive to the other is to impress someone with nothing but their accomplishments and show that they are flawless. Far from it. Telling someone upfront that you are crazy and damaged while being good nature in saying it, shows that we understand ourselves and we won't over criticize unfairly with theirs.

To loosely quote a critic that put it so perfectly:

“People miss what makes a strong character is how they deal with their flaws, their fears, their turmoils, their troubles that get in the way. That's what makes them relatable. But this character doesn't have any flaws, at least, none that they'll acknowledge... because while having a character be strong is good, it's more important to have them be interesting first... I'm not gonna act like the original was the best-written character, but you felt her pain, you understood her anger, and you cheered when things went right because she allowed you to see her most fragile moments... It's like the two Charlies from the Willy Wonka movies. One is an emotional yet dreamful kid, and the other is Jesus! We're obviously going to relate with the one that acts like a real kid because we all were real kids, we could relate to that. It's the same thing here. It doesn't matter what you claim she is or isn't. If you don't connect with her, there's no emotion. And this movie has made it impossible to connect with her because they tried to make her flawless, ironically creating unintentional flaws with her that are never acknowledged or resolved.“

The point of this exercise isn’t to advise all the reasons to the other why this shouldn’t date you; it’s to both show that you understand that you’re humble enough to show you have flaws and that if the other does the same, they won’t be humiliated for doing so. If you could good naturally say that you are deeply crazy, and the other does the same, chances are it will go somewhere.

But if the other insists that they are easy to live with, that all they could talk about is their accomplishments, and they claim they have no flaws whatsoever - run! In that case, you have an emotional infant who hasn’t begun to know how they might prove difficult to one other person.

I agree with the author. I don't have a ton of experience, but I'd say the heart of what Discord's lesson in this chapter was:

Be honest, be humble, be sympathetic. Find a happy middle between showing all sides of you, both the beautiful and the ugly. But you have to be gradual about it. It's only one date. Try to connect. After all, we are all human. And the best kind of human to spend your life with is one that you can relate to.

Comment posted by taterforlife deleted July 16th

If my guess is correct (and they often aren't), to me it sounds most like Fluttershy asked Discord out, and Discord was at a crossroads. He loves her in every aspect of the word, both good and bad, but he's terrified. Knowing all that he knows about the psychology and philosophy and history of love, and knowing himself and all the things that make him "crazy", as he wrote in the card, he probably made a deal with her to do these classes so she can be really, really sure that she wants to do this and try a romantic relationship with her.

That being said, I'd like to put in that you have a chance for some real comedic relief at the last lesson when its over. He could push them all out of the classroom in a panic and then shut the door and hyperventilate into a bag because now this is it. Surely she couldn't want this with him now!


That's my guess and I'm loving every minute of this.

I do want to point out that you have some issues with some words, such as using "patients" when you meant "patience". You're a great writer, so I don't want something like that to drive new readers away, just in case they're picky. There were more words like that but I can't remember. I can try to find them though if you'd like later on.

Well... You're half right.

Also, I'll set out to fix that mistake immediately.

Sorrows of Young Werther?

I was wondering when you'd pull Goethe into this.

That was, until one Summer when Discord put up the offer for a surprising class in the felid of Philosophy. The subject was about love.

...And Starlight thought this was a good idea, why, exactly?

I can certainly relate to some of those things... "no phone while eating/being driven/walking" is the major instance of "not from reason" these days.
However, due to my circumstances, some of this... didn't apply to me. The "understanding" thing for instance: while I had my fair share of frustration when I wasn't understood, the fact that part of it was my autism meant that a lot of the issues were mentally sorted into that box instead. Meant the target of said frustrations was my own ability to express myself rather than others' comprehension. Maybe that's why I'm so focused on choosing the right shade of meaning in my speech...
Another one is the "urge of independence". I know I should feel it, that I should want to be my own man, making my own rules... but that sort of thing still terrifies me. My Dad has expressed many times before his worry about how I'll survive if something happens to him and Mom, and the only fault I had was his assuming that just because I wasn't "doing something about it", I didn't feel the same way. In that case though, it comes back to the whole autism thing. My Mom "gets it", having been so directly involved with my autism adjustment process, but Dad? Being the breadwinner took too much time for him to gain similar comprehension. So while there simply are no words to properly convey some of these issues, words are all I have.
As for my relation with the idea of children... I really hate dealing with them. Immaturity is something I can't handle, even when it has sufficient youth to excuse it. Ironically enough, the point I really understood this about myself was the same day my parents complimented me on how good I was with kids. So I guess I internalize it well? Teenage is much more manageable to me though, reason having more weight than emotion there (comparatively anyway).

Holy fucking fuck fuck!!!

This is why I don't want kids!!!

I feel bad for the Cakes and Shining and Cadance. They probably want nothing more than to run to their babies now and just hold them and sob apologies to them for issues that do not yet exist.

Also I just realized... You don't have Pinkie and Cheese in the group! Which isn't a problem for me, I'm just curious about it. All the canon couples are in there, it seems, but them. Why?

Simply because I had a full enough plate as it is to juggle 31 characters (Discord included). The sad truth is I can't put everyone in without making it overcrowded as it is and giving them enough screen time - so to speak.

Ah. Still, I'm surprised you picked some over others. I know you needed a mix to cover all the different marital issues, of course. How did you decide which to use and which not to?

And you said I was half right in my hypothesis from last chapter. I think that's the closest I've ever gotten, haha. I'll take it. But it makes me wonder if you're actually trying to mislead us. Is the deal really fluttercord, or something else?!?

Guess I'll have to wait and find out.

First, my apologies for not responding for the past several days as there have been things I have to take care of. However, now that I'm able to sit down and write, I might as well give you some answers on my end.

To start with, the whole list of characters came about when several months ago I posted a blog and a few shipping groups about which characters they would like to see in a story like this. I looked at the suggestions and tried to figure out which I could use based on the research I've raked up. Believe me, there were more than just thirty characters here. Besides, speaking as someone who has a story where it involves so many characters, it turns out that it's surprisingly difficult to juggle so many. Especially when it comes to giving them some screen time and doing what I could to make sure they weren't left out. So in a sense, in this, I had chosen what I did as partly to tailer some of the lessons around them, and partly so that this story wouldn't become overcrowded as it already is.

As with the case with Discord, the funny this is, this story isn't entirely set in stone, believe it or not. Although there is an overall framework in which I work off, there's nothing solid until it is written. In a way, think of my writing style like Jazz music, a small portion has a path to go on, and the rest is improvised.

So, with that, I'm going to let you in on a secret. A big one. At the end, this whole thing with Discord teaching this class on love - if Fluttershy's idea from a deal they made. At this point, they have indeed been dating for a while, yet, Discord is worried stiff that maybe it wouldn't work out at the end. Not because he views her as problematic, but because he realizes that she's not going to make him suffer as he's used to. If anything, he knows she's actually... good for him. But he's scared that maybe something he'll do that would convince her otherwise. Thus, the classes were formed to see if, in spite of knowing all the challenges in a relationship, Discord is partly testing to see if she would still go through with marrying her. Still, your idea of him having a panic attack and her calming him down does give me ideas...

Dear friend, if I may call you that, do not worry. Honestly? I think you reply to comments rather quickly! When I get them, though... not so much. Sometimes I don't even reply! It just depends on the timing.

Thank you for such a thoughtful answer and letting me in on the secret! It's actually the closest I've ever gotten to being correct!

Honestly, I find a lot of the philosophy you put in here quite comforting. I'm single, I'll be 28 this week, and have only had 2 short relationships, one of which ended last week, and it wasn't me who made it end. I even re-read some of the singles chapter to help me feel better, because my dream has always been to marry someone who loves me and I love back, and have children. Now I'm wondering if that will actually ever happen, and sure, adoption is a thing, but will I be able to afford that by myself? I'm fixated on time. I can only safely have kids until 35. And if no one wants me in my prime, who would want me later?

I may have to rethink my life and perspective about things, but these philosophies help. And as this story keeps reiterating... Rushing into it isn't a good idea.

(I'm fine though, I'm just trying to give you an idea of why I appreciate it. I originally came for the fluttercord, but I'm staying for the great writing and the philosophy. It really does help. I don't think it makes romance jaded. It just paints what makes a REAL relationship, and what makes it work and not work, because we aren't Disney characters. We are people.)

Myself, I tend to be very literal, and always try to choose words with the exact shade of meaning that I intend.
This, however, has one drawback: it's easy to forget that this approach is the exception, rather than the rule. I may be clever in wordplay when the mood takes me, but when the message has 90% of it as unspoken emotions... chances are that it flies right over my head.
Another problem that can crop up: people are so used to hidden messages at times that they can read more into what is said than is intended. For instance, when I say I don't care about dinner or a movie, it's not me being passive-aggressive. It's just that I do not have an opinion strong enough to count as "caring about it".

To the first, in all fairness, the art of interpretation of someone's emotions is a skill that isn't widely taught or seen as a useful one. I suppose this is due to the idea that if it's emotions, then there's no need for an education because they should come naturally and we will pick up along the way. If it's hard to pick up the details from someone in what they want you (or the other way around) to catch, it's pretty understandable why.

To the second, now there is a legitimate point. Sometimes people do say what they mean. That, in your example, when someone asks what you want for dinner and you reply "I don't care much what, really," you did mean to say just that. Perhaps the difference between being genuine about not caring and being passive-aggressive all comes down is to context.

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