Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes
Most popular Nassim Nicholas Taleb Quotes
A good book gets better on the second reading. A great book on the third. Any book not worth rereading isn't worth reading.
If you don't feel that you haven't read enough, you haven't read enough.
It takes some humanity to feel sympathy for those less fortunate than us; but it takes honor to avoid envying those who are much luckier.
If we are the only animal with a sense of justice, it would clearly be because we also are about the only animal with a sense of cruelty.
Journalists cannot grasp that what is interesting is not necessarily important; most cannot even grasp that what is sensational is not necessarily interesting.
To understand how something works, figure out how to break it.
The first, and hardest, step to wisdom: avert the standard assumption that people know what they want.
Multiplicative generosity: limit your generosity to those who, in turn, given the circumstances, would be equally generous towards others.
The only valid political system is one that can handle an imbecile in power without suffering from it.
A heuristic on whether you have control of your life: can you take naps?
Electricians, barbers, gardeners, surgeons, tango dancers, are experts. Not economists.
It is a very powerful manipulation to let others win the small battles.
Never hire an A student unless it is to take exams.
Life is about early detection of the reversal point beyond which your own belongings (say, a house, country house, car, or business) start owning you.
Contra the prevailing belief, "success" isn't being on top of a hierarchy, it is standing outside all hierarchies.
People feel deep anxiety finding out that someone they thought was stupid is actually more intelligent than they are.
People tend to whisper when they say the truth and raise their voice when they lie.
People are much less interested in what you are trying to show them than in what you are tying to hide.
Religion isn't so much about telling man that there is one God as about preventing man from thinking that he is God.
If you get easily bored, it means that your BS detector is functioning properly; if you forget (some) things, it means that your mind knows how to filter; and if you feel sadness, it means that you are human.
Trust those who trust you and distrust those who are suspicious of others.
Failure-resistant is achievable; failure-free is not.
When people call you intelligent it is almost always because they agree with you. Otherwise they just call you arrogant.
Some ideas are born as you write then down, others become dead.
Almost all those caught making a logical fallacy interpret it as a "disagreement."
Thinking that all individuals pursue "selfish" interests is equivalent to assuming that all random variables have zero covariance.
The person you are most afraid to contradict is yourself.
Let us find what risks we can measure and these are the risks we should be taking.
An idea starts to be interesting when you get scared of taking it to its logical conclusion.
If you want strangers to help you, smile. For those close to you, cry.
Envy, like thirst for revenge, is the wicked person's version of our natural sense of injustice.
Academia is to knowledge what prostitution is to love.
Just as eating cow meat doesn't turn you into a cow, studying philosophy doesn't make you wiser.
Never take investment advice from someone who has to work for a living.
It is not possible to have fun when you try.
The first one who uses "but" has lost the argument.
It is quite a predicament to be both evil and risk-averse.
The more data we have, the more likely we are to drown in it.
It takes a lot of skills to be virtuous without being boring.
If someone is making an effort to ignore you, he is not ignoring you.
You will never know for sure if someone is an asshole until he becomes rich.
People reveal much more about themselves while lying than when they tell the truth.
Never take an advice from a salesman, or any advice that benefits the advice giver.
Your duty is to scream those truths that one should shout but that are merely whispered.
Swearing on occasion, amid a rich vocabulary, is costly signaling that you are self-owned.
Probability is the intersection of the most rigorous mathematics and the messiest of life.
What counts is not what people say about you, it is how much energy they spend in saying it.
Never rid anyone of an illusion unless you can replace it in his mind with another illusion.
Remove all empty words from writings, résumés, conversation, except when they aim at courtesy.
In the medical and social domains, treatment should never be equivalent to silencing symptoms.
You can tell how poor someone feels by the number of times he references "money" in his conversation.
I wonder how many people would seek excessive wealth if it did not carry a measure of status with it.
In real life exams, someone gives you an answer and you have to find the best corresponding questions.
Executive programs allow us to watch people who have never worked lecturing those who have never pondered.
The problem with academics is that they really think nonacademics find them more intelligent than themselves.
In your prayers substitute "Protect us from evil" with "Protect us from those who improve things for a salary."
One of life's machinations is to make some people both rich and unhappy, that is, jointly fragile and deprived of hope.
Bureaucracy is a construction designed to maximize the distance between a decision-maker and the risks of the decision.
People focus on role models; it is more effective to find anti models - people you don't want to resemble when you grow up.
The general principle of antifragility: it is much better to do things you cannot explain than explain things you cannot do.
Humans need to complain just as they need to breathe. Never stop them; just manipulate them by controlling what they complain about and supply them with reasons to complain. They will complain but be thankful.