Friday, June 17, 2011

Who do you listen to?

Who do you listen to?

All humans are arrogant, and ego(t)istical – In 98% of the cases, it is an unjustified ego, based on a skewed evaluation of ones abilities. The very few rare people whose ego is justified, are generally so able, that one can consider them extremely eccentric and not entirely human. Feynman and Hawking come to mind in the realm of science. Kasparov or Torvalds maybe.

As for the rest, the mental reality distortion field is quite intense and things connected with one self are artificially inflated, ones thoughts, words and actions seem to have importance. Nothing bad about it – "It is simply the nature of the beast" - as the Denebian Diaboli would say.

In any case, a little common sense will tell one that even if one is an outlier in terms of ability for a few dimensions and skills, that does not mean one has any inkling about certain other things. In such cases, the humbly wise will defer their opinions to anyone who knows even a little better. The one dimensional however, will falsely assume that their own needle of ability, can somehow pierce through the veil of the unknown.

The average physics guru would not realize that when fitting an axe-head to a handle, you strike the handle from the bottom not the head from the top… or that a log must be tied with a timber hitch and not a granny knot. Every skill has it’s own “kung fu” and not much of it transfers across, even if some folks feel that certain kinds of learning encompass others.

It’s all fine for the sciences - Probably the “ideal” physicist would come up with the “bang the handle, not the axe-head” system on his own, but it gets dicey when it comes to the non-deterministic parts of life. The expertise in a field of study does nothing much for the development of a person emotionally and behaviorally, thus we see the occasional “star” acting like a toddler.
I for one, have the privilege of knowing a person who, despite a blindingly brilliant intellect, has the humility to be able to listen to folks and learn from them without dismissing them off as idiots. I aspire that should my intellect ever be so stellar, my humility ought to be that grounded too.

Who do you listen to? – Is there someone who you can listen to when you are aware that your own sense of judgment is unable to cope with some situation? Major Vukalovic said to Captain Boris - “When all is lost, when there is no hope, there is that one (wo)man you can turn to”.

The question is… do you have that one person and will you turn to them and accept what they say? It may not be the same someone always…
What about in a simple day to day situation? Can you take you ego off when deciding the simple trivial things? Are you OK with things not going exactly as you fancy? Do you realize the folly of demanding perfection or everything according to your limited standards?

Can you listen and not just hear?

Sunday, June 5, 2011