In this talk from the Pan American School in Porto Alegre, Brazil, Yaron Brook discusses what it takes to be an entrepreneur and how that fits in to living a flourishing, successful life. A central idea is the role of the mind, not only in discovering the facts of reality necessary to such a life, but also to our emotions.
Reason is how we learn about the world. Emotions are how we experience the world.
Another idea that I found interesting was Yaron’s emphasis on the fact that trade applies to both material and spiritual values. It is equally possible to trade material values, e.g. $300 for an iPhone, spiritual values, e.g. love between spouses, and combinations of the two, e.g. the pleasure you get from helping a deserving person down on their luck or getting pleasure from a book you bought. This is something that is often overlooked, and I think deliberately so by those on the left. The idea that values are not just material things.
You are not going to be able to have a meaningful life for yourself if you do not make your career, your work, your passion.
The talk includes an extended discussion of various virtues (e.g. honesty, independence, integrity and pride) and the importance of work and how they all play into being a successful entrepreneur. The discussions on honesty and pride were especially good.
The questions posed by the students were quite good and covered topics such as sacrifice, acting for the benefit of the community, the rationality of being a soldier, how to solve poverty, equality and more. I got the sense that not everyone was convinced by Yaron’s answers.