Steve Jobs, 1955-2011

5 October 2011

steve jobsIn my 30-year career as a virologist I have used only computers made by Apple. Therefore I am saddened to hear of Mr. Jobs’ passing today.

From his 2005 commencement address at Stanford University:

No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don’t want to die to get there. And yet death is the destination we all share. No one has ever escaped it. And that is as it should be, because Death is very likely the single best invention of Life. It is Life’s change agent. It clears out the old to make way for the new. Right now the new is you, but someday not too long from now, you will gradually become the old and be cleared away. Sorry to be so dramatic, but it is quite true.

Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma — which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.

  • Protogonus

    Apple’s fallen chief had the game well in hand when it made the biggest difference to the company and to the world. He said, with supreme wisdom, “Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart.” We should all be thankful to him for his sincerity, which as the great Carlyle noted, is the root of all heroism.

    What Mr. Jobs lacked, though, was the only comfort attainable within that stark realization of death’s steely gaze: THAT WE HAVE ETERNAL LIFE IN THE DEATH OF DEATH. He who lacks this insight, which has been taught for 2000 years in our best traditions, cannot restrain the pathetic mistakes that “following the heart” will lead to, guided only by the finite self, and lacking the grace bestowed on those who place their trust in the eternal UNIVERSAL SELF in which “we live, move, and have our being.”

    In short, IT IS NOT THAT WE WILL DIE BUT THAT WE WILL LIVE IF ONLY WE WILL.

  • Rustling

    I strongly disagree. There is no eternal life in the spiritual sense. Death is the end of the game and emotions and any  dogmas such as philosophy and religions are manifestations of the refusal of human consciousness to contemplate and accept the hard reality that death is the end of game. Doing good to other people just helps to modulate the nerve firings to reduce physiological stress which may prolong life. Eternal life can only be achieved by gene propagation through making new babies who grow in turn grow up and make more babies.