Here is the full transcript of philosopher/entrepreneur Patrick Gentempo’s TEDx Talk: Unleashing The Power of Philosophy at TEDxMinot conference.
Patrick Gentempo – Philosopher/entrepreneur
Ladies and gentlemen, whether we realize it or not, every single one of us has a philosophy. And that philosophy is an irreducible force that drives our thinking and actions, that dictate our outcomes and our sense of life. And if we just spent a little bit of time considering and learning about our philosophy, I contend that we could change our lives, and if we took that to its furthest conclusion, we could change the world.
Now, the word “philosophy” is an interesting word. It conjures up interesting thoughts or images from people. When you hear the word “philosophy,” what comes up in your mind? Are you thinking about old guys in robes wandering the earth in antiquity? Pondering the greatest questions, like, “What is the meaning of life?” “What is the true nature of human consciousness?” “Why is there something rather than nothing?”
Or maybe you start to think about groups of friends that get together on a Sunday afternoon over some cappuccino, wearing the jackets that have, like, the suede arms on the sleeves. And whatever they’re talking about on that Sunday has no relevance to life on Monday. I’d like to make a distinction.
There is academic philosophy; there is the theoretical philosophy. But there’s also a practical application of philosophy. I don’t consider myself an academic philosopher, but I work hard to be a practical philosopher. As a matter of fact, I contend that philosophy is the most practical thing a human being can hope to embrace.
I’m talking about putting-dollars-in-your-pocket practical, I’m talking about creating-a-better-relationship practical, I’m talking about being-a-better-parent practical. Why? Why would that be? How can philosophy be so practical, and yet most people don’t bother to consider it very often? I think the best answer is cited by Rand when she said that contradictions lead to destruction. And the amount of destruction is relative to the level of the contradiction. And it’s through our philosophical explorations that we can identify contradictions in our own life, in our own thinking and resolve them, and transcend current challenges and go to the next level.