Challenging choices. These two words summarize best who I was, who I am today, and who I will most probably be in the future to come. Hence, this TEDxYouth event is also the fruit of a risk-taking decision that was originated in June 2017 when some of my current grade 12 English B students and I organized BISS Talks. As for our event name today, Crossroads, I have always believed that being in the position to choose something is optimal, even though it might force you to be at a crossroads. Choosing for me is not a concern, but a box full of new opportunities. This is the way I have always measured my personal growth and my lifelong learning.
In his Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle describes choice as voluntary and preceded by deliberation. Without either of these two characteristics, he stated, we would be acting by compulsion or impulse, which could lead us to a fiasco. The former reminds me of the verses “I am the master of my fate, I am the captain of my soul” from William Ernest Henley’s “Invictus”, the poem Nelson Mandela used to recite to himself while serving his time in captivity. Definitively, we are responsible for our own life choices. Furthermore, deliberation gives us room to ponder our options before acting, allowing us to choose the best course of action. Although we can still choose poorly even if we do so voluntarily, good choices imply that our reasoning is justifiable, since it is the product of our own thoughts.
This is exactly what all talks today have in common. Many were the crossroads our speakers were at and, subsequently, the many choices they made to overcome the crossroads they faced. Whether the deliberations and subsequent decisions they made, which they are going to share with us today, were good or not, that is for you to decide. Yet I am certain the way they solved the crossroads that they were stood at will help us better understand why we are who we are.
Finally, organizing this event has been a big puzzle, which we have solved to the best of our abilities. Many voluntary decisions have been made after much discussion. Embracing imperfection has been our way to move forward. It has not always been easy and we have faced a few challenges. Nevertheless, the team has enjoyed the journey and we hope that you will be inspired today by our passion. It will be our humble reward if we can also provide you today with some ideas that may help find the direction that suits you best next time you find yourself at a crossroads.
No 17, Area 4, Anzhen Xili
Beijing, Beijing, 100029
- Event type:
- Youth (What is this?)
Speakers may not be confirmed. Check event website for more information.