FAQ with Seykota.


A couple of years ago, I had a pleasure of receiving a reply from legendary Ed Seykota on his FAQ website.

Ed Seykota, as you must know already by now (I have been quoting and talking about him from years) is a trend follower Trader in US. This is his Wiki Page.

He runs a webpage FAQ where people the world over ask him questions and he answers pictorially. As a Picture can say a 1000 words and leaves a lasting impression which you can recollect after years as well.


I asked him,

Hi Ed,

Ed does not believe in The Cause and Effect Model.

and then he says Intention = results.

Isn’t Intention = cause and Result = effect.


Ramesh Balsekar, follower of Ramana Maharashi says, ‘You can will what you want but you cannot will what you will’. So in that sense intentions = results and you cannot intend what you intend.



Before we get to his answer, lets understand the question in detail.

Ed on his site, explained in a free flowing logic of why cause and effect is a human fallacy. Please click on the link provided as it will open your eyes to the whole new way of looking at world.

We have an urge to know the reason of everything. And in that urge, we fixate on the closest thing that fits the bill.

Autobiographies are a perfect example of that. And that is the whole premise of narrative fallacy. Trying to find the reason of something after it has happened. If you pick any biography you will see generous sprinkling of words like hard work, determination, perseverance, never say die, ability to delay gratification, growth mindset, calm under pressure etc etc. What it completely forgoes is the list of those people who have these traits and are still struggling or already died in their struggle.

And so, Ed does not believe in the Cause & effect model or way of thinking. And then on some other page he mentions another BIG tenets of his trading philosophy which is Intention = Results. What that means is that if you are getting losses in your trade, you intended to get those as everyone gets what they want from markets, some people win by making losses because that is what they wanted.


Now this is DEEP. Who on Earth wants losses. What does this statement even mean. Ed explains in his psychological section how a human brain works. There is a sub conscious mind and then there is a conscious mind. Sub conscious mind (Fred as Seykota calls it) tries to send messages to the conscious mind. As long as this communication is healthy, a human being is in sync. However due to many reasons. CLICK HERE TO SEE THE PROCESS when conscious mind starts ignoring the messages sent by Fred, the problem starts accruing. Fred increases the intensity of those messages and manifests situations in your life for you to get that message.

A divorced person is twice as likely to divorce again the second time, ever wondered why? His FRED is creating those situations for him by inviting those set of people in his life so that he gets the message.

and So, you will get a loss, because that is what FRED in you wants? Fred will ensure that you either don’t create a system or if you do, don’t follow it, get distracted, DE-motivated or any of xyz negatives at its disposal.


So I asked Ed the inherent contradiction in my question. If cause and effect is a fallacy and Intentions = results.

Isn’t Intentions = cause and Results = Effect and therefore a contradiction.


And now the Answer.


This is What Ed Seykota said.


SEE 12th Question from TOP


You might consider thinking of intention as the structure of a system and results as the behavior of the system.
Cause and effect generally refers to one link between two elements in a system, in isolation from other system elements.
If you press down on the accelerator in your car, you might say it “causes” the car to go faster. You might also note that if you see a police officer watching you speeding by, the velocity of your car might “cause” you to take your foot off the accelerator.
By examining the entire system of causal linkages, you can come to know the whole system structure or intention. You can then simulate that structure (intention) to generate the behavior (result).




In Some Cases your velocity can "cause" your accelerator to rise.

In Some Cases
your velocity can “cause”
your accelerator to rise.