In July 2016, Bill Gates wrote a memoir on his 25 years of friendship with Warren Buffett. Here is how Gates started his memoir –
I don’t remember the exact day I first met most of my friends, but with Warren Buffett I do. It was 25 years ago today: July 5, 1991.
I think the date stands out in my mind so clearly because it marked the beginning of a new and unexpected friendship for Melinda and me—one that has changed our lives for the better in every imaginable way.
Warren has helped us do two things that are impossible to overdo in one lifetime: learn more and laugh more.
That last note caught my attention. Including the two lessons that Gates learned from Warren, there are four most important lessons I have learned from studying the latter and his partner Charlie Munger over the past 15+ years.
One, the importance of being a lifelong learner. Two, keep my life simple. Three, closely guard my character and reputation. Four, not take life too seriously and stay happy always. These are apart from the hundreds of lessons I have learned from these two wise men on how to be sensible with my money.
However, when it comes to passing on lessons from Warren and Charlie to children, I always found one thing lacking – stories that would convey these lessons to children in the language they understood, or stories that parents and teachers could use to pass these invaluable lessons to children in the language they loved.
Thus was born the idea of creating this book – Two Wise Men – that contains a few such stories that would pass on the lessons on life, career, relationship, money, and behaviour from these two wise men to children.
The stories you would read in this book – which is just a small part of a larger project we are working on – have been co-authored by my friend S.B. Vallari and me. Vallari is a fiction writer based in India. She focuses on writing short stories for children and young adults.
You see, the current state of our lives is largely a direct result of the stories we tell ourselves, and what we really believe is possible – not what we say is possible, but what we believe deep down in our core.
If we change the limiting stories we tell ourselves, we will be able to change our lives for the better. The stories you and your children read in this book are non-limiting, simply because underlying them are thoughts from two of the wisest men in the world living today…thoughts that have helped them become so wise.
Of course, we learn the lessons we most need only when we are ready for them. Many children reading these stories may not be ready yet to apply them to their lives. And thus the responsibility of adults passing on these stories to children. Read and re-read these stories to your children from time to time, because I believe these will help them immensely when they are ready to use the lessons contained therein to become wiser and happier, and make better decisions.
I have benefited a lot from the wit and wisdom of Warren and Charlie. I am sure our children would too, and especially because they have a huge advantage of knowing about these two wise men so early in their lives.