Would it surprise you to learn that the majority of people who have succeeded in changing the world for the better have almost always been heretics?
The very word “heretic” brings to mind a religious troublemaker being burned at the stake.
But there are heretics in other contexts as well.
And we all owe them a debt of gratitude for doing what others weren’t willing to do.
Anyone who is serious about improving the world, even in small ways, must be willing to be a nonconformist.
When it comes to developing our own internal horsepower, we have to become comfortable with being seen as a heretic.
Benjamin Franklin once noted that all the heretics he’d known were virtuous men.
They had fortitude and couldn’t afford to be deficient in other virtues because that would give their enemies the advantage.
“Do not, however, mistake me. It is not to my good friend’s heresy that I impute his honesty. On the contrary, ’tis his honesty that has brought upon him the character of a heretic.”
Typically, our modern heretics are individuals whose vision of what could be is stronger than their desire to be seen as an obedient part of the herd.
Paul Rosenberg reminds us that:
“Those who merely follow the flow – whether they be doctors or ditch-diggers – live by rules and slogans that are provided to them by authority.”
If you want to see the world change for the better, put your faith in the nonconformist.
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