Principles

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[this is work in progress]

I stumble upon numerous pieces of wisdom or philosophy every now and then that I end up applying on my everyday life. With time, however, I tend to forget some of them and feel like I’m re-learning some lessons when I find them again. Hence, inspired by my friend Fahad, I decided to jot down all the rules, principals, and pieces of wisdom that I wish to follow here so I can revisit them every few weeks. I’ll jot them down scattered down here, and perhaps organize them with time. This is mainly for my own reference, but I figured it might be helpful for others as well.


On Knowledge

  • No matter how much you know, you know little.
  • Knowledge is a great thing, only if put in a phenomenal application. You’ll need to learn a lot however before you’re able to apply some of that knowledge.
  • You are incredibly lucky to be alive in this day & age. Access to information has NEVER been easier. Utilize it. Learn in every means you can and from every channel possible. Learn about what you’re interested in and what matters to you. Learn about what we learned from the past and what’s important for the future.
  • We tend to place things into boxes, and that’s not entirely a bad thing. We’re animals of pattern. Patterns and boxes help us understand things better by making them more predictable, and that’s how we can build on them. Every while though, these boxes become outdated, and you must be open enough to take things out of that box, figure them out, and put them in a new updated one.
  • Documentation of knowledge and wisdom has been extremely beneficial for the human race.

On Wisdom

  • Wisdom is brain’s orgasm.
  • Wisdom is the summed up conclusion of mistakes and thoughts over time.
  • Wisdom can save you a tremendous amount of time if you open yourself to learn from it. Smarter people have reached to conclusions that you don’t have to relearn thousands of years ago. Listen to them. And if you’re not convinced in some, make your own mistakes.
  • Making your own mistakes will be your best teacher, given that you learn from them and not repeat them.
  • “Learn from the mistakes of others. You can’t live long enough to make them all yourself.” ― Eleanor Roosevelt
  • There’s an insanely profound quality of wisdom buried in books. I find the wisdom of the Greeks & Romans about 2,000 years ago very very fulfilling.
  • I found it crazy that I related to letters wrote by Seneca 2,000 years ago. On Travel as a Cure for Discontent & On the Futility of Halfway Measures are two of my all-time favorites.

On Death

  • Death is the single most useful invention of nature. It takes out the old and makes space for the new.
  • Death reminds you not to take yourself too seriously. Death reminds you that all the rules are made up, and you can change them.
  • Ask yourself every morning “if today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I’m about to do today?”
  • “Live as if you die today. Plan as if you live forever.”
  • “Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything: all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure. These things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.” ― Steve Jobs in his Stanford Speech
  • Remembering that you’re going to die should not stop you from making long term plans or commitments. It just makes you more certain of what you’re getting yourself into, and makes you leave any commitments that no longer serve you.

On Health

  • Your body is like a car. Feed it crappy oils, and it gives you a crappy performance. Rarely move it, and it rusts.
  • Don’t obsess over physique. We all want to look good relative to what others see, but too much of it and it consumes your brain to be a validation seeking machine, and that’s not productive nor healthy. Not for you, not for anyone. People typically like beauty, to look at, that is. Develop a personality, it’s more valuable and surprisingly more scarce than you could imagine.

On Mental Health

  • Your head is a jungle. Countless thoughts pop-up subconsciously without your control. Meditation helps you become more aware of that and hence reduce those thoughts.
  • “You will continue to suffer if you have an emotional reaction to everything that is said to you. True power is sitting back and observing things with logic. True power is restraint. If words control you that means everyone else can control you. Breathe and allow things to pass.” – Unknown

On Entertainment

  • Life is a tension of the extremes. Speed and slowness. Good and bad. Like you inhale and exhale, you need to work and rest. The ratio between these two differs from one person to another. Some need a lot of entertainment to produce some work, others can produce a lot of work with only little entertainment.
  • If you truly enjoy what you work on, you tend to need less entertainment.
  • Generally speaking, movies and series are a waste of time. You can learn a lot from some that carry a well-plotted and researched narrative about something you’re interested in.
  • People love watching TV because people subconsciously wish they could see the world from another perspective; from someone else’s eyes, and TV offers exactly that.

On Ambition

  • “Men Grow according to the Demands they make on themselves. Demand little of yourself and you will remain Stunted. Make Big Demands of yourself, you will likely grow to Giant Stature.” – @fatehshernu

 

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