Susan Cain || The Beauty of Bittersweet

April 7, 2022

Today we welcome Susan Cain. She is the author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, which spent eight years on The New York Times bestseller list, and has been translated into 40 languages. Susan’s TED talk has been viewed over 40 million times and was named by Bill Gates as one of his all-time favorite talks. Her new masterpiece is called Bittersweet: How Sorrow and Longing Make Us Whole.

In this episode, I talk to Susan Cain about the complex emotion of bittersweet. We explore melancholy and how the intertwined recognition of beauty and impermanence can be tapped for creative pursuits. Susan also talks about how existential longing is a natural part of the human condition, allowing us to form deeper connections with one another. We also touch on the topics of creativity, spirituality, relationships, grief, and mortality. 

Website: susancain.net

Twitter: @susancain


  • The spectrum of bittersweet
  • The paradox of tragedy
  • Melancholy is not always depression
  • Longing for Eden
  • Spirituality is a manifestation of longing
  • Existential longing, awe, and wonder
  • Reaching through acts of love
  • The new science of transcendence
  • Mortality and transhumanism 
  • Maslow’s plateau experiences 
  • The epigenetics of inherited trauma
  • Follow your existential longing

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