My Journey from Wall Street to the Edge of Chaos

by | Jun 22, 2023 | living systems investing

I have always loved connecting with highly creative dreamers that manifest new products and services in the world. My journey to the financial industry was accidental, a series of small accidents. I grew up in a working-class family and had little experience or interest in such things. When I was little, I wanted to be a dancing French speaking zoologist. Let us just say I was not the most practical person, which really made no sense in my family. Earning a living and staying grounded into that reality was my family experience. I responded to one newspaper ad out of college and ended up in pharmaceutical sales and then after that in medical sales. I applied to one business school, Columbia University and off I went to New York City. After that it was $80,000 in loans at 9 percent rates and high anxiety about how I would pay the loans back.

After business school, I ended up in sell side investment research in the financial industry in New York City. The research part was fun. As high school valedictorian, I had the research part well under control. I was lucky enough to have a boss that let me explore and look for new areas to research to find something to cover on my own. I ended up writing one of the first sell-side research reports on healthcare information technology (digital healthcare today). Another bank bought that firm after a trading disaster and not long after I ended up as an investment analyst for a small capitalization growth fund in New York.

I was always challenging the status with every boss at every job. I also had unconventional abilities that combined instincts, knowing, intuition and a deep meta level thinking ability. In those days, I did not own or understand my own gifts and they were different in the financial industry. I had quite a turbulent time with my business relationships and jobs as it was hard for linear, mechanized thinkers to understand how I would arrive at the conclusions I did. More often than not, I would turn out to be right, but that would actually make my superiors angry. Despite the hardships, my career led to a long-term love affair with meeting, following, and investing in small entrepreneurial companies. I especially liked companies applying advanced science and technology to solve hard problems and make the world a better place. However, my more holistic and integrated version of solving problems and making the world better often contradicted the status quo in finance and business.

After watching my family work in jobs that did not make them happy to take care of the family and survive, I decided early on that the real purpose of money should be to empower people and help them thrive. It has taken a long time, but the world is finally ready to explore this possibility. It does not at all conflict with addressing the large issues in the world. I feel that empowering people to follow their hearts and natural abilities is the only way we will really get anywhere.

My investing path was primarily focused on health and life science companies as well as small capitalization public equities, but my interests evolved when I became fascinated by the interconnection of ecological and human health. The predominant business and financial paradigm left no room for this passion. To indulge my personal interests, I took a short course in permaculture which changed me forever. Around that time, I also took a weekend shamanism class which was truly one of the most fascinating things I have ever done, plunging me into the world of metaphysics, other dimensions, ancient wisdom, and the great mysteries of natural intelligence. Since that time, I have had many more teachers, inspirations and profound “ah ha” moments along the way.

Somewhere along this path, I got quite ill with a nearly fatal (well, it was actually fatal as I died and was brought back to life) and rare autoimmune disorder. Fortunately, for me it was bizarrely not chronic, but I spent nearly a year in the hospital and overall continuum of care. It actually took years before I felt human or normal again. I had wonderful doctors and caregivers that were a team and did not rely on any formulaic medical plan. They spent long hours talking about my case and giving it their best. My primary care doctor said this when I asked him how he could always stay so positive: “Sometimes that is all you can do.” I can tell you from my perspective, it meant the world to me and gave me hope to keep fighting. When I was leaving the hospital, my medical team threw a champagne party and they said that this was why they got into medicine. I was in a wheelchair at the time and could not speak yet, walk or swallow too well, so I was not able to have any champagne. However, I will hold that moment in my heart forever. We are moving away from this balanced human approach to medicine and the customized way they treated my case. This is a long story, but it does help to shape some of my ideas and inspirations for changes that I feel are needed in healthcare. Everything we go through shapes who we are and what we share with the world. As difficult as this experience was, I am grateful for the lessons and the beauty of the little moments along the way. My friends, family, and many professional relationships were also a huge lifeline of support. It was, admittedly, not the most career enhancing experience of my life, especially during those days in the financial industry.

After this experience, I no longer felt any desire to work in way that left out meaning, passion or purpose. At some point, my passion for linking human life experiences to nature became my full-time preoccupation. I very much wanted to find a way to link human life to nature in practical and important ways. I felt that many large global problems depended on restoring and better understanding this relationship. Everything from the shamanic wisdom to the new science was pointing in this direction, but this was not where the money was flowing in my professional line of work.

What I discovered over time is that using natural intelligence as a framework for investing encourages you to look for the fringe and lateral thinking entrepreneurs that tend to connect the dots across industries in unusual ways. They usually come off the beaten path and are usually not the glitzy people at elite schools most of the big money is chasing. Understanding these principles also shows you the path to discovering big scientific and technological breakthroughs that other investors routinely miss, even in areas attracting considerable buzz. It is not always what people are doing but how they are developing and financing the business that gives you the competitive advantage. You need patience to look past the herds, as you may feel left out until sanity returns. You need to invest with entrepreneurs and investors that are on the same page, or it causes problems. Very importantly, these principles show you a path for developing and financing more integrated solutions for complex problems and a path for managing layers of risks from all the major turmoil in the world.

We are on the verge of a profound shift in our understanding of natural laws, expanding beyond our linear, mechanistic, Newtonian model of reality to a nonlinear, quantum world view of reality, where your thoughts, beliefs and observations create your reality. The universe is neither linear, nor deterministic, but probabilistic. This is no small statement. The implications are enormous as you need to rethink everything you think you know from cause and effect to the nature of time itself. My personal belief is that it is not about linear (complicated) vs complex problems as so many people in the complexity science world think. It is more of a living awareness of how the linear relates to the nonlinear. It is not religion vs science. It is not Newtonian vs Quantum. It is an interrelationship. I feel this is where real science is going and how and why nature harmonizes us to feel more secure, emotional balanced and connected. Think fractally. Nature helps to beat out of us everything that is not real such as the things our beliefs and culture indoctrinate us with from a very early age. Disconnection is the myth (disconnection is a fundamental part of how the linear and complicated view of solving problems works). Interconnection is the reality. Complexity science, quantum science and ancient wisdom show you that you change your reality as you change your perceptions, which is why it is so important to think critically and maintain individual sovereignty. Seeing the world as interconnected is how lateral thinking works. It is the most creative way to find new discoveries. It is how you start to see the system from the parts and how you can change your perceptions.

There are so many attempts around the world to shape narratives to control your perceptions. It can be a lonely place to stand. It feels like you are giving up so much to stand here. However, permaculture, chaos theory and ancient wisdom all show you that “the edge” is where you find all the creativity and abundance. Controlled narratives are designed to keep you in fear as when you are in fear you are more easily controlled. However, to stand with your connection with nature means you have everything you need and soon you will find others around you that share the same views. It is a more efficient place as well. You find you do not waste so much money or earth’s resources (this is a complex subject and needs more time to discuss). Connecting with nature is about connecting with life itself and is about so much more than counting carbon.

Applying sustainability principles using only a linear, Newtonian mindset keeps us on the same zero-sum game paradigm, but with considerable greenwashing inevitable. Instead of solving interrelated crises, we are creating large new ones, the inevitable consequence of applying linear economic and scientific frameworks to problems related to nonlinear, complex, interrelated systems. Using real natural intelligence as a guide for sustainable investing is very differentiated from the approaches of the predominant ESG, impact and sustainable investors, as the majority of these investors, consultants and business practitioners are still using linear processes, linear scientific methods, and traditional investment structures. However, there is more awareness of these issues than there used to be. There is a growing perception for the need to take system views, so there is a growing global movement to migrate to system-based business and investment approaches. The political backlash is inevitable as these efforts are impacting people across every area of their lives across industries. Linear mechanistic processes applied to complex, interrelated crises are polarizing by definition. Also, entrenched interests have accumulated significant power and wealth narrowly defining problems and solutions in world dominating business models. Following natural wisdom is actually radical and most likely will result in major disruption to old wealth building models, but that hardly matters as we all face together the accelerating and disruptive change in the world. The field of economics needs to evolve to follow the natural laws of physics. This is a complex subject, but there is a growing group of interdisciplinary and global people exploring ways to evolve economics to represent life as it is really and not just how it appears in linear economic models.

Contrary to what the “de-growth” crowd thinks, we can shift from the destructive, life and nature destroying consumer driven global economy to one that is more life enhancing and empowering by “growing” many unique products and services that add to the vitality of the world. Actually, it is already happening. It is not and will not be a smooth transition, however. The destruction of the old at a time like this is painful, but the newly emergent is truly awe inspiring to keep us all going through the rough times with hope and inspiration. Though there are legitimate concerns of destructive use of new technologies such as AI or genetics, there are many wonderful and clever entrepreneurs that have an embodied understanding of natural intelligence and wisdom to help guide our way with how to use and apply these exciting new tools.

One of my best skills is connecting the dots in unusual ways, so I am leveraging this ability by offering a new type of futures research. I tend to ask lots of unconventional questions and they can be very fiery at times. I am not a big fan of taking sides, so the intense polarization in the world just invites this edgy behavior in mavericks like me. When I was a little girl, I would always order chocolate and vanilla swirl soft serve ice cream as a treat. The flavors had to be swirled together like a toroidal field, not side by side and not stacked on top of each other. It would not taste the same for me otherwise. Not much has changed in that department. I am always looking for unique ways of gathering diverse people for discussion or integrating information. These days that is difficult with the intense polarization in the world, but it is getting easier with more people breaking off from centralized social media platforms to group together in various decentralized ways. There is a collective intelligence aspect to this service. I am not expecting to do all the work myself. I divide up themes and trends in small snippets and sometimes I only start with the questions and a few other things, knowing that the members in the service will also offer their input. I hope for fun and lively interactions to help bridge the divide and make it fun and safe to explore areas of deep controversy in new creative ways. I definitely need the positive inspiration as following all the global turmoil is very sad and draining. I am hopeful these snippets will be like an ever-evolving story as a model for a new type of interactive, living book. Of course, this will only work if people agree to breathe deeply and stop typing when triggered as we all get triggered today. It is essential to be respectful at all times and also to work hard to find a way to alter our perceptions enough to be able to really understand another’s point of view even if you do not agree. I appreciate your patience, as I am just getting going and there are some novel concepts here to explore.

My fascination with the exploration of natural intelligence is really only just beginning, so I do not claim to be an expert on something so vast, multi-dimensional and mysterious. However, I do know enough that re-exploring and understanding the fractal nature of reality is critical now. My journey from the financial industry to the edge of chaos is all about exploring the emergent, new order in the chaos. Jackson Pollock and Antoni Gaudi do not get to have all the fun.

I hope to offer people a respite from the fear and the group think that is increasingly leading our global societies in a very Orwellian path. Fear of chaos, uncertainty and losing control is leading the world in very uncreative and destructive directions. Individual sovereignty and following true natural laws are necessary to find the path to freedom, passion, purpose, regeneration, inclusivity, interconnectedness, a healed earth, and a healthier more empowered population.

The chaos we see across all our systems in society is the inevitable unwinding of incoherent systems. Most of essential global systems in society are linear, reductionist and mechanistic and nature is not linear. It is fractal. We are part of nature, not separate from it. The war mentality we are using to try and conquer all the interconnected crises is fear based, reductionist and incompatible with truly addressing any of the large systemic issues.

I am excited about tapping into the creative potential of the liminal space or the edge of chaos to open up the potential for profound transformation and inspiration.

Here are links to Pythia Capital’s three investor services launching soon:

1) The Pythia’s Delphian Research Service (Foundational and First Service to Launch)

2) Pythia Capital’s Direct Deal Service (global direct private investment deals)

3) Pythia Capital’s Moonshot Investor Membership (global micro-to-mid-capitalization public companies and crypto)

There are many synergies among these three service areas mentioned above, so it is helpful to glance through the three service areas above to better understand the synergies and the potential. The Pythia’s Futures Research Service will launch as a Beta Test before the end of 2023. Please contact me at the email address listed below to learn how to participate in the Beta Test. 

Warmest regards,
Lynn Marie DePippo
Founder and CEO, Pythia Capital
Website: www.pythiacap.com
Blog: www.pythiacap.com/blog

Please feel free to email me at lynndepippo@gmail.com.