TED Conversations

Daniel Melendez

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So what do I do with this?

Schulz aptly describes the feeling and fear of finding out you are wrong. Got that (but lack the t-shirt). However, no one I know is going to hire or value me for being wrong. Many of the examples in this conversation are not about being wrong per sé but finding out you can be right in a different context. If I were the astrophysicist/marathoner/CEO, I would want to view the sky within a specific framework in order to make progress (What is progress? - perhaps that is what the talk is fundamentally circumscribing). But at the end of it I am left wanting for knowing. Just because I share the facts in, say, Karl Marx Das Kapital does not turn me into a marxist. Value judgments and actions intervene. And my fear of being wrong is proportional to the value judgment that can be hurled at me. Society is full of those. So, I am left puzzled to make practical sense out of her interesting perspective.


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  • Apr 21 2011: I agree, I wonder just what I should do next. First of all I need to remember all the 'chinese park bench signs' I have faced. I certainly forget them as fast as possible, in my family there is a premium for being RIGHT! An important memory of a French film - a man acts throughout the entire 90- 120 minutes as if he is unquestionably correct. Near the end, he finds he has been largely wrong about most things - he really is the pompous fool others have made him out to be. His response is to lose all bodily control - he just falls over from the devistatation. I think I'd rather own up to my own mistakes before they are thrust on me!

    Now, back to what to do. I think I have to begin a new look at humility - that will be tough because I've spent my adult life proving my correctness. I've admired and praised those I thought were that way too. Maybe they were just playing by a set of invisible rules! There are so many things I would want to keep, and yet so many I must give up!
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      Apr 21 2011: Wow Will, good for you. 'I think I have to begin a new look at humility'. My father used to say 'never confuse meekness (in the biblical meaning which is more like humility) for weakness". The strongest man is the one who is also humble.

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