Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Want to persuade someone? Find out what turns them on.

From this it appears that, whatever it is one wants to persuade people of, we must take into consideration the person with whom we are concerned, of whom we know the mind and heart, the principles admitted, and the things loved; and then we must take note, in the matter concerned, of the relationship it has with admitted truths or of the objects of delight through the charms we attribute to them.

So the art of persuasion consists as much in pleasing as it does in convincing, humanity being so much more governed by whim than by reason.

Blaise Pascal, The Art of Persuasion (section 9)*

*Blaise Pascal, Pensées and Other Writings (translated by Honor Levi)

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