Interview with the author of ‘The School for Gods’
Once anyone has understood this, life is simple, enjoyable and, above all, in his own hands
Q. Your novel “The School for Gods” describes a character that finds it difficult to survive in the modern western society but who meets a “dreamer” that changes his reality. What lessons from the novel’s “dreamer” can be applied to help people make the best out of their lives?
A. First of all, no one can change anyone’s reality, and this is the main point of what I emphasize to our students. What the Dreamer did with the character in the Book was to show him that he himself is the cause of his very own reality and that this reality is a projection of his Being. There are many lessons, but all boil down to the same thing : the world is as it is, because you are as you are. Once anyone has understood this, life is simple, enjoyable and, above all, in his own hands.
Q. You have mentioned that when you founded the European School of Economics you wanted to create something that could help flourish “the very dream of every student” How do you nurture the inner being of each student at ESE?
A. We can say that at ESE we create the conditions and provide the personal attention for each student so that he may best realize his dream. The centers are very beautiful buildings and are all in important locations in key European cities to assure that each student receives rich impressions even from his physical environment. Internships and courses of study and specialization are programmed depending on the real needs and aspirations of each student. When I founded ESE I wanted to create something different for the students – a place where they could study poetry and philosophy – in the end, as we are offering degrees in business there are a number of technical courses required by the curriculum but this was unavoidable. The personal attention and care given to each student can be summed up
Q. Your MBA is very different from other options because it transforms its graduates into visionary individuals and leaders prepared to live an enriched life and enhanced careers. How does your MBA help students expand the horizons of what is possible in their lives?
A. The MBA program was created to produce a new breed of leader. This Leader is the prototype of a new mankind that is changing skin, whose effect is still rough, whose brightness is still constructed, but is precious in the understanding of a practical utopia precisely for this reason, where happiness and success are not only possible, but unalienable rights of every man.
Intuition is greater than reason and knowledge.
The intellect can neither seize it nor generate it.
No planning, not even the most sophisticated, can substitute a single, intuitive spark of genius.
New leaders are emerging in both business and politics -radiant men endowed with a sixth sense, made of intuition and of responsibility, and a seventh sense, superior to all others, made of “dream”.
The classical schools to whom is traditionally assigned their education and preparation have become barren. The convents, the big western universities, the schools of philosophy are unfit to create the “substance” that the man of the next millennium will use to nourish himself. We can say that the entrepreneur and the zen monk, if separated, both prove to be unfit to deal with the momentous challenges that our civilisation is facing… .ESE’s MBA program aspires to fill this gap.
There exists no better condition than that in which each individual finds himself in this precise instant – the place where each one of us is born and develops is the ideal place to transform every seemingly adverse event, into an opportunity for success. We emphasize to our students that
it is possible to learn a new lesson from every circumstance, and that they must leave behind that which is overcome to go forward. With our MBA program we aim to show students that the world is connected to our emotions, passions and thoughts. They are the drive belt between the inner and outer world. By managing emotions and thoughts, along with everything else we feel and experience in a particular moment – that is by mastering our states, we can take over the helm of our existence and give direction to our destiny. In this way they see that anything can be possible intheir lives – they have only to Dream it.
It is essential in your educational philosophy to not only assist students in identifying a career path, but also to encourage them to follow a dream and passion
Q. How is the ESE the perfect bridge towards a students’ dream career?
A. An important question we ask students is, ‘what would you do all day, every day, even if you were not sure of any reward? The answer is that if you can answer this – this (activity) is your dream. We tell our students to ‘ Do only what you love,’ because we do not believe that a career should be separate from the student’s dream, but that it should be a natural outcome of it. Our every activity is aimed towards the student’s discovering his own uniqueness – his own dream.
Your mission is to create a new generation of young entrepreneurs and corporate leaders, visionaries and pragmatic dreamers.
Q. Could you describe your vision on corporate social responsibility?
A. The economics to come – industries and corporate enterprises should teach the Art of Dreaming – the principles of self-improvement and inner integrity to enable their people, managers and employees, to become advanced beings. The world of business has to realize that real, financial expansion comes out of quality, and declines rapidly when quality is missing.
In order to ensure longevity in any organization, a leader must be aware that all of his thoughts, emotions, fantasies, memories and imaginings and above all his dreams, are part of a world that is intangible and parallel to what he has learned to interpret as existence. An organization is a living being and the most subtle of its components, its ideas, values and fundamental beliefs, all come from its invisibility – and it is the invisibility of its men, in particular the founder that guide an organization and determine its longevity. The new leaders will care for their organizations in every sense.
Studying abroad yields many benefits not only academically but also socially and there is a clear relationship between the investment in higher education and reaching one’s professional goals.
Q. In this sense, why do you believe that higher education in a foreign country is the best investment any student can make?
A. “The School bears in its roots a truth never expressed in the world of economics: visibilia ex invisibilibus. Economic wealth is only the reflection of an organisation or a nation’s invisibility. Prosperity comes from within. It’s a process that, like every healing, starts from the inside and moves out.” In this light, study at ESE or any school that can potentially better your inner world is definitely an advantage.
In the times in which we find ourselves, no one gets a degree just for the sake of it. A degree is a major investment that should in time pay off. In ‘The School for Gods’ I’ve said– ‘If you bet on yourself – life will be on You’ – this is a good literal interpretation of what investing on yourself – on an education means!
‘Higher education’ for its own sake is not useful for anyone. It must be undertaken with criteria and in the most real sense of the word ‘education’ which comes from ex duco – to take out.
More than seeking to accumulate knowledge, students must seek become part of an organization – a School that is going to take care of them in every sense and help them to uncover the invisible in themselves – to discover their dreams. If I must limit myself to answering your question I would have to correct you and universalize the argument in saying that I believe higher education in a foreign country is the best investment ANY student can make IF he is in the hands of a real School.
I’ve cited this quote from the Dreamer on more than one occasion “You are the main Cause of all and everything!’ Remember this, and there will be no other discipline to follow!”