03 February 2009

Inspiration in unlikely places

When I was at the captains' career course, I was more interested in educating myself than anything else.  I used the six month period to read a number of books that I wouldn't have normally read.  I started in an unlikely place, though.  I read through the reading recommendations of Internet celebrity Tucker Max, who recommended that I read three books by Robert Greene:  The 48 Laws of Power, the Art of Seduction, and the 33 Strategies of War.  

From the citations and passages quoted in these books, I was further led to even more fascinating works:  I re-read Sun Tzu, I read T.E. Lawrence and Musashi, and I learned about John Boyd and the OODA loop.  I read about evolutionary psychology, I encountered Machiavelli, and I learned about maneuver conflict.  I learned about every aspect that I could in the field of warfare and counter-insurgency.  In a round-about way, I have the captains' career course (or the vast array of free time the course gave me) for that.  Plus, the catalyst for me little renaissance there came from none other than Tucker Max.  Who would have thought.

Focus:  Have you ever had inspiration from an unlikely source?

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