It’s funny how pretty much everything is instructional in one way of another.
When Robert Greene published the now cult classic The 48 Laws of Power people were a bit polarized.
According to LA Times the book, “turned Greene into a cult hero with the hip-hop set, Hollywood elite and prison inmates alike.”
But for some, a thorough explanation of laws such as – Never outshine the master. Never put too much trust in friends; learn how to use enemies. Conceal your intentions. Always say less than necessary, seemed almost evil.
For Greene, the book simply explained the world as it is and in doing so offered instruction for those that wanted power and those that wanted to be aware of how people might abuse power. I recall reading the book when it came out and it’s funny how the book impacts me much differently today than it did fifteen years ago.
In his latest work, Mastery, Greene returns to the subject of power, but a form of power and intelligence that he suggests represents the high point of human potential and the source of the greatest achievements and discoveries in history.
According to Greene, Mastery is the compilation of twelve years of going deep into the stories of high achievers and piecing together a systematic pathway to power that is universal.
In Mastery, Greene reveals a path that he believes anyone can follow. There are elements that are intuitive and some that are not. The path is relatively simple, but hurdles exist in many places.
Green’s five point path presented in Mastery is this:
- Discover your calling – a deep interest in a topic or at least remaining open to that interest is pretty much the key to starting the process.
- Apprentice with intensity – Learning everything you can from mentors and those that have come before you is how you gather a deep knowledge of your subject
- Gain social intelligence – This is the point where many stall as it involves gaining both a knowledge of human nature and of yourself. This is the place where society butts heads mastery.
- Awaken creative energy – The people that I call master possess the ability to recognize patterns and trends and see very clearly how things could fit together.
- Develop high-level intuition – This is basically the ability to make unconscious observations about what’s going on around you and see into the future. It’s that point where something is so vivid to you with just a glance while others have no idea what you’re seeing.
I believe that the pursuit of mastery is perhaps what we’re all meant to do and certainly it’s a calling that entrepreneurs feel strongly, even if they don’t know why.
Mastery is an inspiring read and a book that I intend to revisit.