Know More Today About the World...

I spent some time this week thinking about what drives us – as individuals, as employees, as family members, as citizens.  And I came across this quote:

“For me, I am driven by two main philosophies: know more today about the world than I knew yesterday and lessen the suffering of others.

You'd be surprised how far that gets you.”

― Neil deGrasse Tyson

Neil deGrasse Tyson is an American astrophysicist, and currently serves as the Director of the Hayden Planetarium.  Tyson grew up in the Bronx, and had an strong interest in astronomy from a very young age.  He started giving lectures on astronomy at the age of 15. Eventually attending Harvard, Tyson went on to earn degrees from Harvard, The University of Texas, and Columbia University.  He eventually hosted an education science TV show called NOVA ScienceNow.  As the Director of the Hayden Planetarium, Tyson resisted the conventional theory that Pluto was a planet (it has since been demoted to a dwarf planet). 

Tyson is driven by two things – to learn, and to lessen suffering.  There’s remarkable simplicity in his words – and how they drive his actions, his decisions, and his quest for truth in this world.  Different people have different goals in life – some choose to live lives with no regrets, others choose to always do the right thing (even if it’s the harder one).  But when you reflect back on who you are, can you whittle it down to just the essentials?  I’m driven by the fact that there are still 57 million children around the globe who are out of school.  I’m driven by the fact that only half of students in areas that Impact Network operates complete primary school, and that very few complete secondary school.  I’m driven by the fact that every day, I wake up, determined to be a part of the solution to change those statistics.  I’m driven by the central philosophy that we each hold the power to leave this earth more equal than we found it. 

What drives you?

- Reshma Patel, Executive Director