In my search for knowledge and understanding, which at times has seemed futile; I have found numerous reasons to halt but many more to persevere. Where the quintessential cause for renewed impetus has been verification, which aside from offering the incentive of clear perception also affords the experience a sublime sense of comfort a comfort that can (itself) hinder the process of discovery. Being comfortable and complacent in any state of emotion will dissuade the individual in it from seeking validation of such state. The scientific method demands that we constantly test our knowledge and allow evidence to substantiate our truth. This can be done in two direct ways: First, there is research – where as scientists, or agents of discovery, we must take the initiative to uncover the required proof to verify our hypothesis as truth, through dependable rules and procedures. Second, there is the available support of others who have experimented with the same principles before and who have adhered to the right protocols as to allow for the duplication of their experiments. Both of these approaches are effective in finding facts, given that one condition is present – the experimenters’ detachment from emotion.
I’ve said before that an idea or a principle is neither true nor noble because it makes someone happy. The noblest of truths, like the pervasiveness of suffering or the indifference of the universe, do exactly the opposite. Consequently, whence our hate for truth comes. This utterance provides me with a sense of calm reassure, which should not emerge from a personal need to be right, but by the validation it receives from those of my peers who have reviewed it and found objective significance in it. There is much one could say about the inherent human fear of truth and the insolent advances we make towards it. Please know that I have much to say on that subject, most of which promises to offend many of the hypocritical assholes I call my friends. However, this little rant is not about human impudence, or the harebrained refusal of facts ubiquitous in the species. This is about the second method of truth finding, I mentioned before, which is the study of the experience of those who have looked at our theories before us.
Several months ago I became acquainted with a man who promised to provide me with the mentorship I have been seeking for a while now. A successful entrepreneur, multimillionaire, who claims to be able to identify specific traits in people, by direct observation of their behaviour, and for the sake of anonymity and security we will call him Ivan – and the fact that this is his actual name, makes the last part of this introduction, pretentiously ridiculous. Ivan has demonstrated his abilities as claimed, and many accounts by familiar sources, further support them. He also exhibits an exceptional ability to persuade and to manipulate those around him, which he attributes to his “people reading skills”. As he would put it: “knowing what people are thinking and feeling is essential to control.” Ivan’s worldview is different than mine, in that he believes that there is a spiritual component to his aptitude for understanding human behaviour, he maintains that certain energies are at play in social interactions and that they should be considered carefully while studying any exchange between people. Irrespective of the difference in our belief systems, we both agree on many aspect of the psychology of behaviour and communication. We seem to also agree on which people we like and dislike, almost 100% of the time. (99.5% – and that 0.5% is comprised of angels and other mythological beings). Presently, I am comfortable enough requesting Ivan’s verification of my observations of others, which we conduct in blind experiment of these subjects. This is to say that I will not allow him to know what I have observed, until he has reached a conclusion and presented it to me, without conscious or subconscious biases.
In our frequent meetings, I van and I have discussed many topics pertinent to people and why they do the things they do. I have been privy to sensitive personal and family information that from my perspective has contributed to his knowledge of human psychology. We both understand that the truth is essential to happiness, which makes is the most expensive of all gifts.
… to be continued