Antimodel

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“People focus on role models; it is more effective to find antimodels—people you don’t want to resemble when you grow up” – Nassim Nicholas Taleb.

Solomon is my antimodel. My interest in him is not for lack of role models (I have many), but for variety. He is the opposite side of the coin. He is all the wrong answers and all the wrong decisions; all the failed experiments and the formulas that don’t add up. Just like we tend to learn a great deal from our own mistakes, we can look at him and thank the Lord we don’t have to suffer the consequences of making his. In reality it’s almost as hard to find such and exceptionally good antimodel. The reason is that no one had as much knowledge, wisdom, privilege, wealth, experience, opportunity, and divine favor as Solomon had, and simultaneously display such poor stewardship of the blessings. If there are mistakes to learn from, they are his. Solomon’s redeeming quality is that he stands out as the assembler of great wisdom learned the hard way. He is type of Samson who at least sacrifices himself for the good of others. He could have kept all that wisdom to himself, but instead he becomes the curator of the museum of knowledge where all the works of art are free for the taking even though he hadn’t the faith to take any himself. You don’t want to look like that when you grow up.

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