Sebastian Junger

Award-Winning Journalist, New York Times Bestselling Author of Tribe, War, A Death in Belmont, Fire, and The Perfect Storm, and Co-Director of Restrepo

There are people in this world who experience and endure almost unbelievable events in their lifetime. This week’s amazing guest, Sebastian Junger, is one of them. Sebastian shares graphic details of his undiagnosed, life-threatening aneurism that burst, causing a 90% blood loss – all internally. He is an award-winning journalist covering major international news stories as well as a documentary film-maker. He has been nominated for an Academy Award. He also has an amazing grasp of human and military-related psychology.

In addition, Sebastian is the #1 New York Times Bestselling author of The Perfect StormFireA Death in BelmontWarTribe, and Freedom. Sebastian Junger is the founder and director of Vets Town Hall, with the purpose of increasing communication and understanding between veterans and civilians in their communities.
 In this episode you will hear:
  • If you can’t out run ‘em and you can’t out fight ‘em, you’re gonna have to out think ‘em.
  • When things get physically hard, you gotta figure out how to turn off your mind – don’t let your mind negotiate with you.
  • I was a lackluster student in college, but writing a thesis is the most exciting thing I’d ever done.
  • I made a mistake and hit my leg with a chainsaw.
  • There are really dangerous jobs out there with a mortality rate of combat soldiers.
  • The majority of veteran suicides are primarily Vietnam-era veterans. It may not be caused by a combat issue as much as it could be a life issue.
  • While working as a journalist In Liberia, I was accused of being a spy. They came to get me and I hid on the roof of my hotel, with the embassy 300 yards away.
  • In combat, you’re proactive. You have urgency. You can affect the outcome.
  • There is a moral burden in killing the enemy.
  • I had an undiagnosed aneurism – a deformity – in my Pancreatic Artery. It ballooned out & it burst, causing me to bleed out into my own abdomen.
  • I lost 90% of my blood, and as I was dying, and my dead father showed up above me – trying to comfort me.
  • If you can’t defend yourself and your community, you’re not going to be free for very long.
  • The trick for human freedom is to be militaristic enough and organized enough to defend yourself against an enemy, but also create an equitable society at home.
  • Humans don’t survive in nature by themselves – they need other people.
  • How do you return a warrior to society? You can leave the front lines, but eventually, it’s gonna find you.
  • We walked almost 400 miles and most nights we were the only people in the world who knew where we were. There are many definitions of freedom but surely that is one of them.
  • If you can separate your body & your mind, you can do almost anything.
  • My daughter once said: “Daddy, I’m small, but I’m huge when I stand in the light.”
  • Public accounting of what it felt like to serve your country overseas can be very cathartic.

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