The Naval Podcast – Read What You Love Until You Love to Read

Check out Naval’s Episode Page & Show Notes

This podcast clip is part of a conversation between Naval Ravikant (@naval) and Babak Nivi (@nivi). Unless otherwise noted, quotes are from Naval. For reference, check out Naval’s famous How to Get Rich tweet storm.

Key Takeaways

  • We kick things off with some classic Naval quotes:
    • “There is no skill called business. Avoid business magazines and business class. Study microeconomics, game theory, psychology, persuasion, ethics, mathematics and computers.”
    • “Reading is faster than listening, doing is faster than watching”
    • “The foundation of learning is reading”
      • “I don’t know a smart person who doesn’t read”
  • Read what you love, until you love to read
    • People who read a lot love to read, and they love to read because they read books that they love
    • Start out reading what you enjoy —> reading becomes a habit —> you get bored of the simple stuff —> you gradually read more complex material (science, philosophy, mathematics etc.)
      • You’ll naturally move up the hierarchy 
  • It is important, however, that you read foundational things (the original books in a given field which are scientific in nature)
    • Instead of reading a random business book, read The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith
    • Instead of reading a recent book on biology or evolution, read Darwin’s On The Origin of Species
    • Instead of reading a recent biotech book, read The Eighth Day of Creation
    • Another recommendation – Richard Feynman’s Six Easy Pieces
    • “If you understand the basics, especially in mathematics and physics and science, then you will not be afraid of any book”
      • Aim to eventually be able to walk into a library and not fear ANY book
  • “It’s not that the means of education or the means of learning are scarce, the means of learning are abundant. It’s the desire to learn that’s scarce.”
  • Children are naturally curious
    • But over time, most tend to lose their curiosity – schools replace curiosity with compliance
      • “Once you replace curiosity with compliance, you get an obedient factory worker, but you no longer get a creative thinker”
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