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SMART FOOL

May 13th, 2020

 

There is an entire spectrum of strategies for trying to achieve a certain end.  And while it’s clear the probabilities are fairly skewed towards one end of this spectrum, there are still some incredibly foolish things that pan out quite well.  But no one wants to be a fool.

 

Unfortunately our default strategy for avoiding the possibility of being a fool is itself a bit foolish.

 

We read, we plan, we read more, we study, we observe, we educate ourselves, and we continue on this hamster wheel as if one day, we will have consumed all the knowledge of the universe and finally, the time will have come to finally do something.

 

The irony of such an outlook is that action opens up an new realm of information to analyze and understand, much of which cannot exist in books by default of the fact that books are always objects from the past.  While there exist frameworks and fundamental principles that persist reliably through time which can be learned from book, nothing can be understood without action.

 

Knowledge is static.

 

Understanding is active.

 

Understanding is knowledge in motion.

 

We understand only when we can apply knowledge to achieve predictable outcomes.  We create new knowledge by reversing this process.  We actively explore and as a result we come to understand something new, and then this understanding becomes knowledge when we share it, either by explaining the pattern of the new phenomenon we observed, or writing it down, or any other method of communication.  And here we strike upon a balance, a dance of give and take.

 

The fool just dives right in.

 

The smart one reads up on it first.

 

But the wise person knows how to be a smart fool.


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Podcast Ep. 759: Smart Fool

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