Лёня Посицельский (posic) wrote,
Лёня Посицельский

Nassim Taleb's Commencement Address

"For I have a single definition of success: you look in the mirror every evening, and wonder if you disappoint the person you were at 18, right before the age when people start getting corrupted by life. Let him or her be the only judge; not your reputation, not your wealth, not your standing in the community, not the decorations on your lapel. If you do not feel ashamed, you are successful. All other definitions of success are modern constructions; fragile modern constructions.

The Ancient Greeks’ main definition of success was to have had a heroic death. But as we live in a less martial world, even in Lebanon, we can adapt our definition of success as having taken a heroic route for the benefits of the collective, as narrowly or broadly defined collective as you wish. So long as all you do is not all for you: secret societies used to have a rule for
uomo d’onore: you do something for yourself and something for other members. And virtue is inseparable from courage. Like the courage to do something unpopular. Take risks for the benefit of others; it doesn’t have to be humanity, it can be helping say Beirut Madinati or the local municipality. The more micro, the less abstract, the better."

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