How a Gunshot Changed Everything


by Simon Black, Sovereign Man:
The bullet went through his jaw… If it was 2cm lower, I wouldn’t be here today.

I’m here in Lithuania for the 8th annual Blacksmith Liberty Camp.

We have over 60 students from around the world. They came from Australia, Sri Lanka, Russia and the U.S.

But these aren’t your normal “students.” These are entrepreneurs.

And entrepreneurs are value creators. We have actors, charity workers, teachers, employees. They’re free thinkers. Some of them own incredibly successful businesses. Some of them are wondering how to get started in business, or how to change careers.

But they’re all here for the same reason…

To connect with each other. And to learn skills from each other and the nine, expert instructors teaching at the camp.

But the important thing is, we’re all here. Which brings me back to the story of the gun shot…

Two brothers, Josiah and George, enlisted in the 19th infantry Louisiana regiment in 1843.

They fought in all the major battles of the civil war – Shiloh, Manasas, the Atlanta campaign.

In the battle of Ezra church in Atlanta, both brothers were shot.

George died.

But Josiah was shot in the jaw. He survived.

Josiah left the war in 1843 to heal. He re-enlisted in 1845 and immediately went back to battle.

He was captured by union soldiers one day before General Robert E. Lee surrendered.

After spending a month in Union prison, Josiah was released.

He returned home to Bozier, Louisiana and married his sweetheart, Hattie.

They moved to Texas to start a family.

Josiah was my great, great grandfather.

I’m here today, teaching these students today, because Josiah survived.

If the bullet landed 2cm in another direction, Josiah would have died. And I’d be nothing.

The point of my story is we’re all here. Don’t waste the opportunity.

You could have been born a cockroach. And plenty of cockroaches would happily trade places with you.

Some people think the pinnacle of success is working four hours a week. It’s bullshit.

Make the most of this life. Work hard, acquire skills ruthlessly, reflect on yourself to make sure you’re doing what you really should.

Most of all, learn to create value for the world.

And how do you create value? The secret is hard work. Constantly raise the bar. Surround yourself with people that are better for you. Strive to be more and do more. And look outside yourself for the answers.

That’s why we’re here in Lithuania… to share our ideals and teach success.

Hopefully we’ll see you at our camp in Lithuania next year.

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  1. Well, THAT was a waste of time. I even read the linked-full story. STILL nothing to see.
    I was intrigued because I’ve been to Lithuania about a dozen times, and have really enjoyed the place. Spent weeks there each time, got to see and enjoy living there with my Lithuanian girlfriend. I got a taste of their “normal life”, and not the life of a tourist. Did some tourist stuff, sure, but more often, was just living, some shopping, cooking, walking around, working on fixing some things around the house, cut the grass, visit relatives, pay bills, fix the car, etc.

    I’d first seen the country, back in 1995, and have seen how things have progressed.
    I imagine the other Baltic “states” are similar, and perhaps someday, I may get a chance to see them too. (Estonia & Latvia).

    There are very few, hardly any Muslims in Lithuania. VERY nice!! The country still has plenty of “OLD- Eastern Europe” feel to it, but the modernization of shopping, great roads, and VERY VERY clean, organized, etc, is wonderful to see.

    I was always VERY surprised, to walk for hours along the streets and walkways, and something was really bugging me… then I figured it out. It was RARE to see any bits of trash, or even a cigarette butt laying on the ground!!!

    But, on the opposite side of the cleanliness, was the PUTRID mess of highway rest stops that have NO bathroom facilities, just the forest, where you dump on the ground, amid the other piles of shit and toilet paper in every direction. Those horrid places are getting fewer and fewer, but it’s bad when you have to stop at one.
    As in every nation, city, etc, there are thieves at night, who steal cars, or open doors to look for things to steal out of your car, so everybody there, always locks their doors, lock their homes and garages.
    You should see the common door locks (and the Heavy Duty) home doors, garage doors,etc.
    The door my girlfriend (and most other people) like to have installed on their homes, is like a bank vault!! A very popular door.

    NO way is anybody going to “kick it down”.
    This is the type of door I’m talking about. I’ve never seen something like this offered in America, but I’m sure it’s available.
    Look at all those bank-vault-dead bolts and HD steel frame! I think it costs more than $2000. I swear that the freakin’ wall would fall down before the door would break.

    Anyway, Lithuania’s geography is mostly devoid of any mountains, but it does have rolling hills, a nice sea coast, and plenty to see and do. Friendly people, of course.

    Look at this door, they are quite popular over there. In America, where most houses are built with 2×4’s and sheet rock? You can just go thru the wall faster than a door like this, but in Europe, where most homes are built from rock and brick, a door like this is great.

    • @Craig
      Interesting peek at life in Lithuania. Thanks for posting that.

      As to doors, if building codes allowed them to open out instead of in, the entire door would be supported by the frame and would be VERY difficult to kick in. In public buildings, doors MUST open out so people won’t be trapped inside by the crush of those trying to escape a fire. What’s good for that should be good for homes as well.

      • Some doors are allowed to open “outward”, as my mobile home back door goes “out”.
        And I believe I remembering hearing that codes require house doors to open OUTWARD in the hurricane zones, because it is stronger protection from strong winds.
        But don’t quote me on that.

  2. Seriously 1843 Civil War….lots of cred to lose right off the bat and then reinforced again. You’re correct the Civil War was a horrendous era of States Rights and slavery culminating in the massive casualties on and off the battlefield. The ability to make death more impersonal and efficient were not good ways to progress. We need to revisit that and take a long hard look. Don’t want to repeat those times.
    Life is precious and we are here often by twists of fate. Good to look at your ancestors and ponder their and your paths.

  3. My teachers lied to me during my formative years about when the civil war took place. I feel so foolish…

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