December 15, 2020
But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you.
— Matthew 6:33
Dr. Jordan B. Peterson, in his lecture about Matthew 6:25-34, talks about how this famous passage from the Sermon on the Mount — the one about considering the lilies of the field, and not worrying about what you eat or drink — is often interpreted from a hippie lens. "See how the flowers just chill out and don't worry about anything? Be like the flowers, mannn, God's got you covered! Just relax and take it easy, dude!"
Of course, such a dumb way of interpreting this passage misses the main point in verse 33, quoted above. It's when you seek first the kingdom of God that everything else falls into place. Dr. Peterson sums up this idea along these lines: aim at the highest possible good, and live in accordance with that aim.
What is the highest possible good? As far as I'm concerned, it's making dragon babies.
In many Asian countries, there is a "dragon baby boom" that happens every 12 years. During the Year of the Dragon, birth rates go up by around 5-20%. This is because of the belief that children born with the Dragon sign, the best in the Chinese Zodiac, will have good fortune and an auspicious destiny.
Studies have actually shown dragon children to be more successful relative to cohorts of other zodiac years. Most likely, this is a self-fulfilling prophecy: the parents who plan for their child to be born on the Year of the Dragon are more likely to be hardcore, pushing their children to succeed. They impart a sense of destiny unto their children, who then have more confidence to fulfill their potential.
Obviously, the dragon baby boom is based on superstition. There is no literal advantage to being born in the Year of the Dragon. But because the parents and children believe it and work hard to make it happen, dragon children are able to fulfill more of their potential.
The real question is: why limit such a mentality and approach to a child born in a specific year? Who gives a crap what the Chinese Zodiac says? Why not treat all of your children as dragons, all born with the potential for greatness?
The greatest way to make an impact in the world is through your lineage. An individual person, with rare exceptions, won't accomplish much within their own lifespan. But, through your descendants, who will be formed in the wake of the legacy you leave behind, you can create a ripple effect that shapes the future. Within the span of a few generations, you could have hundreds, if not thousands, of descendants.
Naturally, these descendants will all fall on a bell curve. You'll have a handful of real bums, and a handful of truly exceptional men and women. Most descendants will fall somewhere in between. The work you put into your life and your family determines the direction that bell curve will skew.
A fat alcoholic loser filled with self-loathing, working a minimum wage job and beating his wife and kids, will give his descendants a bad foundation. While it's always possible for a David Goggins to emerge from such adversity, for the most part the alcoholic bum's children and grandchildren will perpetuate the cycles he started. Overall, his family line will play the game of life at a significant disadvantage.
On the other hand, you can choose to get after it in life, becoming the best person you can become, determined to give your kids the best foundation possible. By leading your children on the path to success and excellence, you're giving them a greater opportunity to maximize their potential in life and become, in turn, the best possible versions of themselves. They can build on top of the foundation you provided and go even further beyond you and your spouse, then repeat the cycle with their own children. Over time, your descendants will have a much better "net average" of accomplishments and positive impact on the world than those of the alcoholic bum who threw his life away and left his kids an incalculable hole to dig out of.
The reality is that no ordinary person can ever realistically hope to effect real change in society. What's some coffee roaster or financial advisor or programmer or chaplain going to do against the likes of Soros, the Clintons, and the Rothschilds? The reality is that you have to play the game to get into a position to meaningfully change it for the better. Most people reading this are too far behind to be the "chosen one" who will actually change the world. But while you can't be the Jesus of the story, you can be the Abraham.
To use a football analogy, you can get a first down and keep the ball moving down the field. You can get your act together and work on becoming the best person you can become, driven by a vision to give your children the best opportunities possible. You can in turn give them that same vision, which they can in turn pass on to your grandchildren. And within two or three generations, you can have a child or grandchild who can truly bring about societal reform to make the world a better place. Your descendants could become CEOs, military generals, inventors, bestselling authors, pastors, missionaries, Olympic gold medalists, or even the President of the United States of America.
To make dragon babies is to take on the ultimate burden. You are committing yourself to the task of being the father or mother of children who are destined for greatness. You're responsible for shepherding them to their destiny, to give them a real chance to leave their mark upon this world, to lead them on the path to become great men and women of God. And to lead them on that path, you must first walk it yourself.
Put simply, you have no freedom to suck in life anymore. You must commit yourself every single day to the overwhelming task of achieving excellence in every domain of life — to fight the Eight Front War. Every day, every action, every choice determines the future of your entire family line. Everything hinges on you becoming the peak of humanity in the flesh through unmitigated daily discipline, hard work, and an unwavering commitment to turn an audacious vision into reality.
By pursuing the ultimate goal of founding a lineage of exceptional human beings who will do great things for the glory of God, every facet of your life will naturally fall into place. You are seeking first the kingdom of God, so there's no need to worry about what you'll eat or drink, or what clothes you'll wear. You'll eat and drink properly to pursue great fitness, and you'll have the finances to afford good clothes as you pursue a great financial foundation for your family.
So get after it and make dragon babies.