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George Spaeth

The Power List 2020 – Power List

Esposito Research Professor at Wills Eye Hospital, PA, USA, and Professor of Ophthalmology at Sidney Kimmel Medical School, Thomas Jefferson University, PA, USA

Your three wishes?

I would like to see humans evolve positively so we come to realize and act appropriately on the basis of that realization that humans are guests in the universe. We do not own any aspect of Planet Earth, we are undeservedly blessed to be living here, we do not have the right to screw up the earth or other parts of the universe, and we have the heart, intelligence and will to live on Earth beautifully and harmoniously – with each other and all other living things.  

I would like to connect more meaningfully, powerfully and supportively with people – including myself – and other living things. I would also like to connect with nature and, if possible, with what is transcendental. 

I would like to have enough time – and the adequate health and will – to get a few major pieces of music composed and performed by good musicians, to have poems, essays and short stories written, published and read, and to complete “Becoming Well in the Real World” in a way that changes the way I and many others live for the better. 

Piece of advice to your younger self?

Listen better, especially to my family, but also to everything alive – including myself. Really listen so I can become more inclusive, more courageous, more supportive of those who are good and honest and loving, and that which is good and honest and loving. 

The most serendipitous moment of your career?

My whole life has been serendipitous: I was created by healthy, talented, loving descendants of   healthy people; lived on a stable, supportive, well equipped vessel, floating along a glorious river, caught in cleansing thunderstorms; docking at fascinating, educational, enlivening ports, at one of which I randomly met a woman who introduced me to a whole wondrous new way of traveling, who loved me constructively, gave me syntheses from her antecedents and mine, educated me to learn that it was the unique that was to be cherished, and encouraged me to pilot the vessel in a new direction that I believed right; then we docked at a place where I connected with art and nature and neighbors, and worked at a place that gave me unheard of freedom to develop what I thought

was right and connect and continue to connect with young people with whom I grew as they did, then the river became polluted and challenged me to clean it up. Who knows what will serendipitously happen next?

Part of the Power List 2020

Find out more

From ocular oncology to tackling neglected diseases, our 2020 Power Listers are making their mark on ophthalmology – and beyond.

Go to The Power List 2020

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