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Painter, Illustrator, Writer. Find me at antondy.com or follow me on Insta @antondymtchenkoart

Before the age of 25

Illustration by Yours Truly

Our minds can be blown away by various experiences: we can travel, we can meet amazing people, we can take psychedelics and much more. Yet, one of the biggest sources of change comes from the transmission of human wisdom through books. Obviously, there are way too many books in circulation to be read in one lifetime and very small percentage of them are life-changing. To help you establish your limited reading list, here are the top five books that ‘red-pilled’ my life before I turned 25:

5. 1984 by George Orwell


Only the cold hard truth

Illustration by the author

I began taking daily cold showers in January of 2018. Yes, you read that right, January. And I live in Canada.

Older family members and acquaintances thought I was nutty. All their lives, they had been taught that the cold was their enemy. People my age were either surprised, didn’t care or thought it was a cool thing to try (pun intended).

Today, I took my 1200th cold shower. I know because it’s one of the habits I track with a special app on my phone. When an activity becomes habitual, the number of times you do it is not…


To build satisfaction from the ground up

Illustration by the author

A few of weeks ago, I was sitting with my family in our backyard. We made a fire in our charcoal grill with leftover wood from a tree chopped up years ago. There were no screens, no junk food, no pressure and no concerns. Each of us could have found things to worry about in that moment. Yet, we sat there, admiring the beauty of the red flames and feeling their heat on our bodies. For a couple of hours, we allowed ourselves to be satisfied.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines satisfaction in three ways:

  1. the fulfillment of a need or…


And how to free your mind

Illustration by the author

Freethinkers have always been a threat to the powers that be. Throughout history, the ruling class coerced people by hijacking their minds. The rulers of the 21st century are no different. With the help of technology, they fragment, pollute and saturate our minds more than ever.

To be clear, their actions usually do not arise from pure evil. They are the biggest gears in a complex machine designed to generate profit. Once they decide to turn, they subordinate the myriad of smaller gears to their motion.

This article is about three enormous gears influencing billions of minds: the News Media…


Originality was the key

Illustration by the author

Dating has never been more accessible and more complicated. It’s daunting to approach someone in public. It’s awkward to meet someone online. Yet, nothing seems more terrifying than staying alone.

Over the last decade, app developers jumped on the challenge of human encounters. At the forefront of dating apps, Tinder now has over 57 million users worldwide.

The interface is simple: profiles of people in your area (including photos and descriptions) appear on your screen; you swipe right if you like the profile and left if you don’t.

When an app has such a simple design and a clear purpose…


With the Wisdom of Ernest Hemingway

Illustration by the author

Ernest Hemingway thought it was bad luck to write about writing. His published prose was already a source of wisdom for writers. Yet, he sprinkled a generous amount of advice about the craft throughout his works and letters and interviews. Here are some hidden gems from the man who changed American literature forever.

First, fill up your reservoir

“As a writer you should not judge. You should understand. […] When people talk, listen completely. Don’t be thinking what you’re going to say. Most people never listen. Nor do they observe.” — By-line: Ernest Hemingway, p. 220

In the writing process, the cascade of words on…


With the Wisdom of Erich Fromm

Illustration by the author

In the middle of the 20th century, Erich Fromm made one of the greatest contributions to our understanding of love with The Art of Loving. In his bestselling work, he describes the hurdles and misconceptions surrounding the idea. He then proceeds with flexible guidelines to improve one’s practice of love. This is the second article of a two-part series. The first one illustrated the troubles caused by the fusion of love and capitalism. This one is about how to love better.

“The first step to take is to become aware that love is an art, just as living is an…


As observed by Erich Fromm

Illustration by the author

In 1956, the social philosopher Erich Fromm wrote an insightful critique of the effects of capitalism on love. In his book, the Art of Loving, he exposed the economic system’s influence and offered solutions for its deficiencies. In this first article of a two-part series, I want to explore the former by updating it to a 2020 reality.

A Free Market of Love

“Automatons cannot love; they can exchange their ‘personality packages’ and hope for a fair bargain. […] Two persons thus fall in love when they feel they have found the best object available on the market, considering the limitations of their own exchange…


With the Wisdom of Bertrand Russell

Illustration by the author

When he wasn’t occupied with revolutionizing mathematics, pushing the boundaries of logic, improving philosophy, mending education, criticizing religion, protesting wars and re-framing history, Bertrand Russell found a moment to write a short book called: The Conquest of Happiness. After diving into the depths of academia and worldly affairs, Russell came back to the surface to answer a simple yet timeless question: “What makes a human happy?”. Although his musings on the subject were published 90 years ago, they remain contemporary in every way.


With the wisdom of Seneca.

Photo by Juliet Furst on Unsplash

“So it is — the life we receive is not short, but we make it so, nor do we have any lack of it, but we are wasteful of it.”

Thus reads the first chapter of Seneca’s essay On the Shortness of Life. That 40 page text, written in the middle of the 1st Century, remains as relevant as ever for the 21st.

Consider the original purpose of the text: convincing Paulinus — a rich superintendent of Rome’s grain supply — to retire. …

Anton Dymtchenko

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