May 23, 2006

Knowledge is ignorance...

Dr. Balaji explores some deep thoughts...

I for very long time did not understand what Adi Shankara, a great shaivite sage said long ago - vidya is avidya. Knowledge is ignorance. I probably am getting some part of it! :-)I believe the problem of the modern world, is avidya. There is a constant push towards de-skilling everything that we do. While it is great for modern economies and the folks pushing for scale, it does what the caste system did in India.There are a few who know and understand what is happening at the macro level and can play with, there are millions who are de-skilled - so that 'dumb' people can be employed and can function.The whole movement on process and KM, is looking forward to a society which is designed to be what i call IP - Idiot Proof!
Too much of abstraction is needed to be a top 'guy'. Too much abstraction in my mind makes me feel that it would lead to too much power with too few people. Abstraction needs training. Abstraction needs longer training. Only the rich and thhe powerful and a few others can access longer training. Too much abstraction i guess is anti-people. especially the ordinary folk, and often the decent folks. Abstraction is a cousin sister of bigness. Bigness is more control.Often bigness means farther away from reality.
The farther you are from reality, the more insecure you become. The more insecure you become, the more control you want. The more complex monitoring
systems you would like to build. which of course need more training to understand and function. Then you can justify immodest pays. and immodest living. immodest attitude.

I have often thought of my replies to my grandfather who kept peppering me with knowledge questions when I was very young, and my replies used to invariably be "I don't know"

One day, in disgust he told me "your name should be 'I don't know'."

Reading this post by Balaji, is this comment by my long dead grandfather responsible for what drives me to gain more and more knowledge, read more and more books? The constant desire to rub off the ignorance of not knowing? Is that also the reason why I am attracted to the subjects of Knowledge Management and individual and organizational learning?

Is the 'problem' I am trying to solve in others, deep down, in reality, only mine?

1 comment:

  1. Honestly, it doesn't seem like you're looking for an answer to that question at all. You already do understand what's going on. Like most of us do - but we're just too pre-occupied to accept the same.

    The quest for knowledge, or the urge to help someone else "get it", in my opinion are quite similar - we usually try to help others when we believe we know something more about the subject than they do - for example, I'm helping a friend learn english purely because I believe that I know better english than my friend. But when I teach him, I learn myself - for me, sharing my knowledge with someone else is the best ways to learn more - pratice makes somewhat perfect.

    So, in my case, the answer to "Is the 'problem' I am trying to solve in others, deep down, in reality, only mine?" would be a resounding "yes". It is my problem to start with - but it gives me a sense of purpose to be able to share the solution of my problem with others and in the process probably help them solve their problems too.

    Ahh! Philosophy.
    I'm reading "Phantoms in the Brain" and suddenly neuroscience and perception make sense!