Wednesday, 27 January 2010

Is stability safer than entrepreneurship?
(Part 2 of 3)

Prehistoric hunter-gatherers moved around frequently, carrying their household items with them. A varied diet and daily exercise kept them healthy. Tribes rarely stayed long in one place; their changing habitations made them difficult targets for parasites.

In those days, man lived on the alert. The world was unstable; the environment, disorderly; man's attitude, entrepreneurial. Each season brought him new challenges, each territory fresh scents and herbs. To danger, he reacted with prudence; to opportunities, with self-reliance.

Stability made its entrance in man's life together with agriculture. Land cultivation and animal domestication brought us a steady supply of wheat, rice, corn, and cheese. On the other hand, they also brought us smallpox, influenza, malaria, measles, lice, and vermin.

As soon as human beings built stable dwellings, rats became their companions. Insects multiplied fed by our blood. Bacteria found a fertile ground to grow; viruses procreated and mutated. Sickness turned to epidemic, illness to pandemic, and disease to morbidity.

Stability possesses a heavy downside of which many people become aware only when it's too late. Routine has advantages, but it can blind you to innovation. Predictability has benefits, but it can render you passive. Steadiness has charms that can make you forget to profit from every day.

Viewing regularity as supreme virtue can lead to the demise of independent thinking. The idea of stability will keep you down if you let it overrule your perception of reality. If you trust routine too strongly, you will develop tunnel vision. If your entrepreneurial skills wane, change will find you unprepared.

To be continued in Part 3


[Image by Tony the Misfit under Creative Commons Attribution License. See the license terms under]

1 comment:

  1. Isn't clinging to philosophy and rationality also a form of striving for stability in one's thinking and doing?

    Does that have its disadvantages also?


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