Breakfast Notes #73 (Aphorisms, History, Stripe)

Breakfast Notes #73 (Aphorisms, History, Stripe)
Photo by Van Tay Media / Unsplash

A wonderful top of the morning to you!

Here is the 73rd serving of the Breakfast Notes.

  • Nietzsche & Aphorisms.  An aphorism is a piece of written art. It condenses truths about life in a kernel. This was why Nietzsche was known as a master of this art. He once proclaimed, 'It is my ambition to say in ten sentences what others say in a whole book.' If you want a quick explainer of some of Nietzsche's best insights, read this. If you are ready, try his book of aphorisms for size.  
  • Durant on the Force of History. If it was up to me, I would make Will Durant's books mandatory reading for all students in Singapore. His prose is both beautiful and persuasive yet, illuminating. Most importantly, he champions the practice of learning from history. He says, 'It is a mistake to think that the past is dead. Nothing that has ever happened is quite without influence at this moment. The present is merely the past rolled up and concentrated in this second of time. You, too, are your past; often your face is your autobiography; you are what you are because of what you have been; because of your heredity stretching back into forgotten generations; because of every element of environment that has affected you, every man or woman that has met you, every book that you have read, every experience that you have had; all these are accumulated in your memory, your body, your character, your soul.' To understand the world, understand the lessons of history.  book of aphorisms.
  • Story of Stripe. At its worst, Stripe is a $63b company. The crazy thing is that the founders, Patrick and John, are only in their early 30s. What I loved about this essay was how it elaborated in great detail how Stripe (i.e Patrick and John) take an extremely long view of things and how they are driven to build a civilisational artefact. This is a long essay that will likely take you hours to digest fully (I took 1 hour to finish reading it), but every morsel is worth relishing.

With this extremely long read, I bid you farewell and I thank you for reading.

May the sun shine upon your face,


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