It is only with the heart that one can see rightly (#3)

I'm doing a small series on Heartcore Capital's foundational principles. The first was "no fear, no greed" and the second "we're the coach, not the athlete."

This one is: “It is only with the heart that one can see rightly.”

It's a quote by Antoine de Saint-Exupery, from his book The Little Prince. If you haven't read it, stop reading this post and go read the book

The full quote is: “On ne voit qu’avec le coeur; l’essentiel est invisible pour les yeux.” That is, "it is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what's essential is invisible for the eyes."

Venture capital sits at the intersection of finance and engineering. It backs the commercialization of new technologies. As such, its cultural orthodoxy is that of investment management: “rational” decision making, fiduciary prudence, calculations of risk and return. Small dreams in a small world.

This is not the true core of venture capital. Venture capital seeks to realize the dreams that break rules, that defy gravity, that create greatness from nothing but the sincere desire of such creation.

The danger of intellectualization and cynicism is that it obscures this truth. The mind with its convoluted neural pathways of pattern recognition and other biases, need for validation and myriad other egoic attachments, prevents the leap of faith necessary to recognize greatness when it comes across it. The mind’s response to greatness is incredulity, envy, spite. The heart’s response is to beat faster in excitement, admiration, empathy.

As I said in a previous post:

To see with the heart is to see to the core of a thing. It means trusting gut, intuition, instincts, feelings to know whether a person and their dream are authentic or not. It is to use the heart to see to the heart of the thing and thus to gauge whether it is a thing worth supporting.

The path to truth is from the heart. 

Though we may elevate rationality to our ultimate value, in the end it is our love of the pursuit of the rational that leads us to truth. In that Feuerbachian sense, I have yet to meet an atheist scientist or founder.

And now it gets a bit more complicated: to see with the heart is to love. Because devoid of all obstruction, if we see all Beings for what they truly are, we have no choice but to recognize our own Being within them. This is the source of all forgiveness and all cooperation.

And the result of such love is growth. To be truly devoted, to see the truth in each other, that is to live in the full potential of our Being.

Thus: The path to truth is from the heart. To see with the heart is to love. The result of love is growth. These are the values at the foundation of Heartcore Capital.

It is only with the heart that one can see rightly, indeed.