Thursday, 28 January 2010

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

Our world looks orderly because we have trained ourselves to disregard inconsistencies. Familiarity does not necessarily breed contempt, but it often renders individuals overconfident. Immigrants that arrive in a new country make observations that puzzle those whose ancestors have lived there for generations.

Watch out for the entrapments of stability so that you do not become sleepy. Our two most precious assets, our health and our mind, depreciate with excessive comfort. Our two most valuable qualities, ambition and persistence, vanish as soon as we take them for granted.

Once a man is born, he is tested and contested until the day he dies. Stability is for the greatest part an illusion to which we cling too avidly. Most things we do are meant to be temporary; attempting to make them last too long is unnatural and counter-productive.

Civilization has brought us a million gains beyond what prehistoric hunter-gatherers enjoyed. Those benefits should be preserved and enhanced. Let us savour modern life without relinquishing our entrepreneurial spirit.

Science has reduced the impact of sickness so that we can remain free-ranging adventurers. Technology has enlarged our scope of activity so that we can explore unknown territories. Do not let your longing for stability paralyse your initiative.

The price that we pay for the pretence of orderliness is always too high. Human beings function best when their mind remains flexible and alert. A wise man attains certainty by overcoming contradictions, not by avoiding action. Independent thinking and entrepreneurship lead to personal effectiveness, from which stability is just a side effect.


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