“The most pressing task is to teach people how to learn.”
― Peter Drucker
|Lincoln Stoller, PhD, 2021. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International license (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)
I’ve turned The Learning Project into a trilogy by releasing two prequel books. The original Learning Project, Rites of Passage, released in 2019, is now part 3. Becoming Supergenius: The Outer World, and Becoming Supergenius: The Inner World, which I released last week, are parts one and two.
I’m giving you free, digital copies of Part I: The Outer World. The download links are at the end of this post.
The Learning Project reflects the flaws and opportunities of our system. In this, those who struggle the most have the most to teach us. People don’t understand struggle is necessary for change.
Your mind is both the obstacle and vehicle for change. The real struggle is with yourself, not the struggle for reward or celebrity.
The people who change the most are the young, the ill, and the disadvantaged. If they don’t learn how to rule the game, or game the rules, they won’t advance. Becoming Supergenius is all about what it takes to advance.
Looking In The Mirror
Rites of passage are not gifts or games. People don’t want to hear about real trials because they’re too challenging, too frightening, and the rewards are too unfamiliar. People buy a chance for amusement, but they sell their chance for enlightenment.
False underdogs are examples of those who succeed through the means we want, people doing what we’re doing whom we emulate. Poster children for working hard and getting rich.
Western Culture is based on exploitation and privilege. This is our history. We’ve never been egalitarian and we’ve never been sustainable. Whether we’re mining resources, exploiting labor, or stealing property, it’s a zero-sum game.
Consider a gallon of gasoline (https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2003-10/uou-bm9102603.php).
It took 100 tons of vegetation a year to grow, millions of years under thousands of pounds of pressure to decompose, and months to drill, extract, and refine. You burn it for a few dollars in a few minutes to do minimally necessary tasks.
In 100 years we have exhausted a sizable portion of all the crude oil in the known universe. This reflects our ecological equation. Where is the balance?
Here is the failure of education. We don’t recognize the cannibalism in our culture, our lack of empathy, and our poor stewardship of the earth. We never learned responsibility, our education doesn’t teach personal meaning, and doesn’t want us to discover it. We’re taught to work toward money, not integrity, purpose, love, and family.
Those who teach this exploitative system are the most dysfunctional, these are the people certified to train conformity and discourage disruption. Those who retain their insight are not certified as teachers; they leave the system.
Exploitative systems serve a privileged population, a ponzi scheme that works as long as it can be sustained. Our system works as long as new buyers are found, old buyers continue to invest, and disruptors are excluded.
The new buyers are the children and the perpetual children. The old buyers are those who have worked their lives to acquire baubles and trinkets, the spiritually bereft who have no other option. The stories of those who’ve exited purgatory are not the stories that most people want to hear. The Learning Project’s stories of redemption are repugnant to most.
If a genius blazes the path we want, a supergenius blazes the path we need. Often disregarded, disparaged, or removed, they make good saints once they’re out of the way their story’s rewritten.
Geniuses open new markets which we then proceed to exhaust. Supergeniuses plant the seeds of the future and rarely live to see them spout.
The supergenius is looking for the same thing you are: purpose, meaning, and balance. They just won’t accept forgeries and falsehoods. For some reason — perhaps it’s luck or genetics — they sense the truth. They are not satisfied with what does not work.
The irony is that the lessons we need we don’t want to learn. We’re comfort addicts and we’re learning averse. The traumas each of us needs to resolve are the things we’re trying to avoid. Try turning around and embracing all your troubles. It’s not easy!
I have a solution: take transformative insights out of their troublesome context and present them in an unavoidable form. Toward this end, I extracted the ineluctable truths from The Learning Project and created Becoming Supergenius.
Becoming Supergenius is subtitled, “328 Secrets from 1,600 Years of Experience.” I present them in a sensible but ambiguous way. For every one path, the opposite is also true. What’s most compelling always consists of opposites. It is our nature to see opposites in everything. You only understand what’s true when you understand what’s false. You need both.
I like complex experiences, but their lessons are easier to recognize when oversimplified. Among the hundreds I’ve extracted are: understanding people and organizations, dealing with emotions, communicating, being exploited, recognizing error, avoiding group-think, benefiting from bad teachers, cultivating self-esteem, navigating gender, fostering creativity, resilience, insanity, and tolerance. Recognizing evil, appreciating cognitive biases, and exploring logical fallacies. Learn from fear and habits. Look beyond death. Explore all that’s good, bad, both, and neither.
All rules are someone’s invention. They work for someone and survive by consensus. Even the laws of physics are just the things we’ve chosen to pay attention to.
To understand how to live, understand what things are based on or, more likely, that there is no real basis for anything. Understand that asking questions and getting answers is a contrivance based on assumptions. Nothing is absolute, everything is provisional, and much of what we believe is wrong.
Religion’s Big Lie is carried on in science and promulgated in the media. That lie is that we know what’s true and what we know always will be true. The deeper truth is that culture changes radically and quickly. The way people thought 100 years ago or will 100 years from now would not make sense to you today. Truth is constantly being remade. This is the context we navigate and the environment in which we make our lives.
Reality is stranger than anything we could know. Who you are, what you need, what you can accomplish, and the meaning of your life are yours to define. Your problems and misfortunes are an invention, and you can change anything if you have the will power, dedication, and sense of purpose.
Being a supergenius is as simple as thinking for yourself about everything. In that manner, you become a completely independent agent. All your beliefs are fallacies, and it’s not hard to find a better replacement for every one. Did you think one plus one equals two? It’s true only in the contrived circumstances, because it’s only in contrived circumstances that any two things are equal.
It’s quite simple: ask deeper questions and find bigger answers. Few people will believe you, but that’s the way it always is. That’s why evolution is chaotic. We progress by convincing others to stop doing what doesn’t work, but they rarely do. Success is inventing what works for you and avoiding everything else.
I’m giving away digital copies of Becoming Supergenius, Part I: The Outer World. You can get either epub or mobi (Kindle) files from this Dropbox folder. Amazon will also sell you a printed copy. Hardcover and audiobook versions will soon be on sale.
If you want Part II, buy it. Becoming Supergenius, Part II: The Inner World is for sale on Amazon and other retailers listed HERE
You can get copies of The Learning Project, or any of my books, on the books page of my website.
Stars, I need stars!
If you can leave me a reader review on Amazon or Goodreads.com, that would be great.
Here are the links to the Amazon pages. Scroll about halfway down the page and press the button that says “Write a Customer Review”. You don’t need to own or have bought the books to leave reader reviews.
Becoming Supergenius, Part I
Becoming Supergenius, Part II
The Learning Project
Let me know what you think! Post stars!
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