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How Much Don’t You Know?

October 12, 2010

Have you ever had a friend who just kept on reminding you of how impossible your goal was? Maybe you wanted to run for President in the at one time; your “friend” however decided to keep reminding you that out of the hundreds of millions of people who have ever lived in America, only a few dozens have ever been president.

Statistically, you may as well play the lottery.

But do you think President Obama’s wife reminded him of that constantly? He was already getting a lot of crap in the media: “We’ve never had a black president, what makes you think you could do it?”

And look where he is now; look where his naysayers are. Well, for starters, his naysayers are NOBODY compared to him. Dare I say they’re also NOBODIES. Who were they again? Wait, who’s asking? No one? Exactly! No one cares who they were. Everyone cares who Obama is.

It’s always easy to sit in the sidelines and criticize what other people are doing. Or heck, even what everyone is doing. I’ve heard comments such as, “Do you know how hard it is to publish a book, let alone be a best-selling author?” “You do realize how much work it takes to pass a single bar exam, let alone two!” “Dude, you’re in a scam.”

Well that’s an insult to my intelligence. Now I’m not saying I’m the smartest dude in the land of dudes, but I have the intellectual capacity to actually look into what I’m doing before I do it. I’ve looked into how to get a book published, looked into patent law (and have an academic adviser helping me out), and Ive read enough law to know what’s scammy and what isn’t. Well, the whole notion of a scam is the topic for something else. Not gonna get into it here.

The thing that boggles me is that there are people who have no idea about the subject at hand yet they feel like they’re qualified to talk about it! Many people are Islamophobic. When asked why, they answer, “Oh they’re all terrorists,” or “Backwards religion,” or “They oppress women,” whatever. Then when asked, “how much do you know about Islam?” They usually say, “not much.” Huh. Well, isn’t that sort of like me saying, “I don’t know Tyrone, but I think he’s an idiot?” I don’t even know anyone named Tyrone, how can I think he’s an idiot?

And it’s not only with topics like Islam. We all know too well the phrase, “I don’t know,” or to put it more colloquially, “I dunno!”

How many of you have asked someone a question, to get the answer of, “I dunno…” with a certain extension… “I dunno, but I think…”

No. Stop. Don’t think. He just admitted he doesnt know. Why tell us what he thinks? Why should anyone listen to someone who admits to not knowing something? If he doesn’t know, great! Nobody knows everything. I answer “I don’t know” to a lot of questions. In fact, it’s a sign of humility.

Thats the funny part. A lot of people don’t know what they don’t know. Worse yet, they dont know that they don’t know what they don’t know. How does a person like that sound? “I know everything! Listen to me!”

They just never say “I don’t know!”

The more a person says “I don’t know,” the more they know. Usually. A person who doesn’t know anything knows he doesn’t know anything. But that person doesn’t do anything to combat his ignorance.

Everyone knows those people who never say “I don’t know.” And sure, they may be fun to get along with and stuff. But would you trust them to give you valuable information/advice? Sometimes they can. But I’d much rather have a doctor tell me “I don’t know, go see a cardiologist” instead of telling me “I dunno what you have, but it sure looks like cancer!” And of course I’d rather the “I don’t know” answer over just, “Eh, you’ve got cancer. Later.”

So do you want to be a person who knows what they don’t know? Or do you want to be a person ignorant of their ignorance?

I’m gonna assume you want to be the former person. So, this is what you have to do. Read more. That’s it. We all know the saying, “the more you read, the more you know.” Well, true as that is, I prefer the saying, “the more you read, the more you realize you don’t know.” And if that isn’t a saying, it is now.

Just read. I find myself in debates sometimes. And if you know me, you know I love debating. Hey, why do you think I wanna be a lawyer?

But even though I know that my argumentative techniques are pretty good, I acknowledge that I’m not the best debater. But that’s why I like debating. I basically get myself into debates and occasionally I’d even argue against the side I’m on. Then if (or rather when) I lose, I steal the winner’s technique. And if I win, then cool. But I’ll still never be a lawyer on par with Gerry Spence. That guy’s just a stud. I kinda wanna get framed just so I could ask him to represent me. Actually, scratch that. Some of you guys may get ideas.

Anyway, I love debating. Oftentimes I find a topic I’m not well-versed in. So I look up the topic. I look at both sides. I gather the facts. Then when I form an opinion, I jump in!

Now, barring all the trolls who are just there to insult people, I usually have a good debate. Faced with logic and facts that I may have overlooked, I may find that I was wrong, and I learn from that experience. That’s my idea of fun. I’m a total law nerd.

Now, debating gets two things accomplished: I excel my debating skills, and I also learn more from the other side. Especially in a foreign topic, I usually find out what I don’t know.

Of course, I also read books. I try not to specialize. Yes, I read about marketing and advertising and PPC and SEO Optimization (tautology much?), but unless someone specifically asks me about those subjects, I use them for myself.

I like helping people though. So I read books that can help everyone. How to Win Friends and Influence People is the book I’m reading now for like, the second time. Heck, some people learn something new just by reading that book. Basically, the kinds of books I read in order to help people out are the following types:

People skills (priority)

Money skills (second priority)

and Health skills (don’t ask me how to be healthy. Yet.)

I try to focus more on people skills because there are a lot of money-managing websites on the net, I personally started reading this one recently (note that I do not agree with everything the author says, but it’s silly to ignore good advice). Plus, no one’s ever complained about being more likable.

So what don’t I know? Every day I learn a lot. I learn more and more of what I don’t know. There’s a saying that goes, “The more you know, the less you think you know.” Now, I know that I’m pretty egotistical at times. So by that definition, I already don’t know much. But at the same time, I think the saying goes deeper than that. Humility is a trait everyone likes in a person. Humble yourself and learn from other people as much as you can. With great knowledge comes great responsibility. So take responsibility for your knowledge, and learn more!

Well, until next time, stay sharp!

To your abundance,

Rasheed

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One Comment leave one →
  1. October 13, 2010 1:59 pm

    An informative blog

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