October 26, 2016 - Comments Off on Commonplace #0034

Commonplace #0034

If You’re Not Hungry Enough to Eat an Apple, Then You’re Probably Not Hungry. Eat All the Junk Food You Want as Long as You Cook It Yourself. Eat Only Foods That Have Been Cooked by Humans. Don’t Eat Anything Your Great Grandmother Wouldn’t recognize as Food. Stop Eating Before You’re Full.

Absorb what is useful, discard what is useless and add what is specifically your own.

Biological systems tend towards what is comfortable.

If you do what everyone else does, you’ll get what everyone else gets.

Listening is among the scarcest of all human skills. Listening requires concentration, skill, patience, and a lot of practice. But such practice is a very sound investment.

What the pupil must learn, if he learns anything at all, is that the world will do most of the work for you, provided you cooperate with it by identifying how it really works and aligning with those realities. If we do not let the world teach us, it teaches us a lesson.

Remember that everyone we deal with has their own goals, feelings, aspirations, and motivations, many of them not always immediately obvious. We must construct human systems with human nature in full view, fully harnessed, fully acknowledged. Any system of human relations that doesn’t accept this truth will always be fighting the world, rather than getting it to work for them.

The man of system, on the contrary, is apt to be very wise in his own conceit; and is often so enamored with the supposed beauty of his own ideal plan of government, that he cannot suffer the smallest deviation from any part of it. He goes on to establish it completely and in all its parts, without any regard either to the great interests, or to the strong prejudices which may oppose it. He seems to imagine that he can arrange the different members of a great society with as much ease as the hand arranges the different pieces upon a chess-board. He does not consider that the pieces upon the chess-board have no other principle of motion besides that which the hand impresses upon them; but that, in the great chess-board of human society, every single piece has a principle of motion of its own, altogether different from that which the legislature might choose to impress upon it. If those two principles coincide and act in the same direction, the game of human society will go on easily and harmoniously, and is very likely to be happy and successful. If they are opposite or different, the game will go on miserably, and the society must be at all times in the highest degree of disorder.

In the great chess-board of human society, every single piece has a principle of motion of its own.

Ramo believed that tennis could be subdivided into two games: the professionals and the rest of us.
Players in both games play by the same rules and scoring. They play on the same court. Sometimes they share the same equipment. In short the basic elements of the game are the same. Sometimes amateurs believe they are professionals but professionals never believe they are amateurs. But the games are fundamentally different, which is Ramo’s key insight. Professionals win points whereas amateurs lose them. If you choose to win at tennis – as opposed to having a good time – the strategy for winning is to avoid mistakes. The way to avoid mistakes is to be conservative and keep the ball in play, letting the other fellow have plenty of room in which to blunder his way to defeat, because he, being an amateur will play a losing game and not know it. If you’re an amateur your focus should be on avoiding stupidity.

It’s the strong swimmers who drown.

Published by: seanwing in notes

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