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Peter Thiel's Mental Framework & Religious Beliefs

perell.com

Peter Thiel's Mental Framework

Peter Thiel is an investor who founded PayPal, a believer in Libertarian ideals, a philosopher who found faith in Jesus, a gay Republican & best-selling author.

  • He is deeply influenced by Rene Girard, a French historian who postulated that we tend to carry our lives by...

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Rene Girard's Memetic Theory

Mimetic Theory rests on the assumption that all our cultural behaviors, beginning with the acquisition of language by children, are imitative. Girard observed that all desires come from other people. When it goes right, imitation is a shortcut to learning but ... when tw...

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Kids, toys & mimetic envy

Girard observed that even when you put a group of kids together in a room full of toys, they’ll inevitably desire the same toy instead of finding their own toy to play with. A rivalry will emerge. Human see, human want.

Our capacity for imitation leads to envy. Babies’ inte...

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Tyler durden - fight club

We buy things we don’t need with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.

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Everybody imitates. We cannot resist Mimetic contagion, and that will never change. But there are bad & good ways to imitate. 

  • Bad imitators follow the crowd and mirror false idols. This leads us to follow status-seeking games, rather than being selfishly focused on ou...

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Michael Porter, the Godfather of modern business strategy, believes that strong businesses should aim to be unique, not the best. Something Peter Thiel also believes: Trying to outcompete rivals leads to mediocre performance, so companies should avoid competition and seek to crea...

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Good businesses are monopolies

According to Peter Thiel, monopoly is the end state of every successful business. If you want to create and capture lasting economic value, don’t compete. The more unique companies are, the more the business world can flourish.

Consider the airline industry...

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Christianity & the birth of linear time

In most religious traditions time is like a circle: it closes where it opened. In Hinduism, for example, the world spins along an endless cycle: creation, rise, decline, destruction, and rebirth. This conception is very much fatalistic in nature.

Christians, however, see time as linear. It ...

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When humans engage in a Mimetic conflict, violence can only be fixed by murdering the scapegoat. This process of killing the victim, again & again, is the main peace pill in an archaic society. People perform ritual sacrifices together, and when a priest is appoi...

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When a scapegoat is sacrificed, peace is restored in the community. Then, the culture lives peacefully for a short time. But eventually, tensions flare and violence returns to the community. To restore the peace, a new scapegoat must be named and sacrificed, which re-starts the sacrificial loop.

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Peter Thiel

There is something very odd about a society where the most talented people get all tracked toward the same elite colleges, where they end up studying the same small number of subjects and going into the same small number of careers… It’s very limiting for our society as well as for those students...

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