Seven years and three startups later, after proving to myself that I could make (and lose) a lot of money, I decided to go into a cave for a few years. It ended up being five.
I studied classic literature and philosophy. I lived in Italy for three years. I got a degree in theology—the sublime science—in Italian. It was made even more sublime by spaghetti l’amatriciana and cheap table wine from the hills of Lazio.
Now I’ve learned more about “business” from Shakespeare, Dostoevsky, and the poor who stop me in the streets asking for money or food to eat.
Why do people want the things that they want? Why does there never seem to be enough? And how do we live together, in harmony, as wanting people?
These are questions that no business guru will ever be able to answer.
There’s a deeper truth about me and you. I have learned that I am what I want.
And I have learned that I have been deeply loved. I have been shown mercy. I have learned my own poverty. I have experienced grace.
In the end, I have gained everything through what I have lost.
And that has made me a very different kind of entrepreneur.