Tag Archives: opinions

Steve Jobs Syndrome


“My job is not to be easy on people. My job is to make them better.” ~ Steve Jobs

Although this is an age old habit of ours, I prefer to call it the “Steve Jobs Syndrome” because it is easier to relate to in our current times.

Steve Jobs is beyond words of appreciation and talent. Certainly his wisdom, thinking and ruthless talent for making things better had left us with better technological products and a company that is lot richer than several countries. He was an inspiration for our generation and will probably continue to be for the next few. But this was Steve Jobs. He did it and did it better which gave him the kind of confidence that he could make a lot of things better. His biography tells us of his core behaviour pattern where he seemed to be very adverse of several things that were beyond his subject which he believed to be poorly designed and made. He believed that he could make all things better and improve as he did with several things that he could. But then again he carried a rare talent that was sharpened by his vast experience, contacts, persuasive skills, relationships, successful track record and financial success. There are several things he failed at as well. Things he could not improve or lost his bet on which is silenced by this achievements.

This phenomenal success story of Steve Jobs has perhaps given birth to this behaviour pattern in many individuals who seem to assume the status and believe that they too share similar intellectual traits. Yes, there are many who are as smart as Steve Jobs or even lot more than he was.  But the victims of this  “Steve Jobs Syndrome” are those who seem to carry a misconception about themselves as being able to make everything better and impose their ideas of improvement on matters that they have very little experience or information about. They think of themselves as Steve Jobs of their industry or subject. Yet they are no way as greatly successful or knowledgeable as he was about his subject.

For a mere $12.00 you can buy a ticket to sit on a comfortable seat in a movie theater and critique a multimillion dollar production probably based on a best-selling book that perhaps inspired a good part of our generation.  You can point out the mistakes, the flaws, punch hols in the story line, trash the characters played by the actors, comment on the directors ideas as though you could truly do it better. All this is done with absolutely no experience on movie making, productions, script writing, creative thinking, directions, leave alone the politics the legalities, accommodating the production companies demands, the actors demands etc. Steve Jobs also said that you “do not need to understand how the transmission works to drive a car”. But if you want to critique the driving experience while shifting gears you had better understand how a transmission works.

Any fool can criticize, condemn, and complain but it takes character and self control to be understanding and forgiving. ~Dale Carnegie

Similarly we about our lives passing callous comments and imposing our unsolicited ideas, opinions, and suggestions on several matters that is beyond our comprehension or knowledge base. Many of us aren’t the best in what we do for ourselves in terms of earning a living. Or for that matter we aren’t the best in anything. We have failed relationships, half hearted efforts, mediocre performance, average success, average career progression, etc. Yet we have the  audacity to criticize others and their talents, and actions. It sure begs the question, “based on what knowledge?” but we quickly bury it under our inflated egos and arrogance. We criticize just because we can and there are no consequences to our ignorance and arrogance.

When we judge or criticize another person, it says nothing about that person; it merely says something about our own need to be critical. ~ Unknown

 

Can we do better? Can we truly improve things around us or have valuable suggestions and opinions? Yes! we sure can but only after being educated enough on the subject in question that earns the right to do so. You can can change the world with your opinions and thinking and move it forwrd. You too can leave a ding on this world of ours. But you need to have te knowledge, wisdom, courage, to be a Steve Jobs. And this is not done with Cynicism or criticism. You have to earn your ranks and wisdom. Hence, it is very necessary to form educated and well thought out opinions. If you care to make anything better, you better roll up your sleeves and learn this subject well. You will fail, but learn and then you may succeed and then your opinion would be valuable enough. But first master your core subjects and try being an expert in your own field. Learn by experience what it feels like to earn the right to critique someone else. We can only understand this truly when someone who knows very little about us criticizes us.

Few people are capable of expressing with equanimity opinions which differ from the prejudices of their social environment. Most people are even incapable of forming such opinions.
Albert Einstein

Many of us are victims of this “Steve Jobs Syndrome”. We think we know everything and interfere in matters that we have very little facts or knowledge about. You are not Steve Jobs. Often, those who are the true subject matter experts, remain quiet and watch us with amusement which we think their silence is the proof that we are right. Educated and fact based opinion is key to any persons success and positive growth. Become Steve Jobs before you act like him. Earn your voice.

 


Are you a victim of your ignorant opinions and behaviour?


I often find myself doing irrational things and saying things without thinking about its implications. Implications on how people perceive me, implications on my character, image, and the value I hold in my society. A callous remark or an opinion expressed without thinking has always come back to bite my ego and left me in shame or guilt.

Calling an individual an “idiot”, suggesting a political position as stupid, taking sides with who I perceive as an underdog, or even simply expressing displeasure on friends behaviour has often made me realize that I was wrong because I truly wasn’t educated enough of all the facts, history, reasons, and emotions involved on the subject I took the liberty to comment on. I guess it is a very common position we comfortably assume appointing ourselves as an expert simply because we do not face any immediate or personal consequences to express our opinion freely, regardless of how idiotic it may be.   On a daily basis we probably voice our opinions and mundane uneducated statements about several matters and issues without truly knowing the facts, and history on the matter we speak. A very subjective point of view of our world and surroundings we so dearly hold and live by without realizing how we truly are perceived and values by those who have an objective view point of our world.

It is not advisable, James, to venture unsolicited opinions. You should spare yourself the embarrassing discovery of their exact value to your listener.~ Ayn Rand

We are true quick to brand others and shower negative statements on several issues blinded by quickly appointing ourselves as a subject matter expert and thereby demanding instantaneous respect by our peers to falter our ever deceiving ego. So, how does this very common egocentric and uneducated behaviour of ours fit in the world of reality? How are we truly conceived by our peers and society? Although many of us succumb to our ego from even attempting to explore this position in the fear of realizing how ugly we look, the reality of our behaviour does have a substantial bearing on our social position.

Every man has a right to his opinion, but no man has a right to be wrong in his facts. ~ Bernard M. Baruch

Did you know that even educated and trained subject matter experts are more frequently wrong in their arguments, predictions, and opinions than right? Studies have shown that over 40% of the Doctors’ initial diagnosis are wrong, we have countless economic experts often predict several future outcomes that never happen, political analysts say several misleading statements, major corporate executives with Ivy league MBA’s run their corporations to the ground and the list continues. Yet we carry the audacity to speak like experts on several issues with very little knowledge of them.  And sadly several educated and people of high social standing make such statements without realizing how misleading they can be and how much credibility they can lose in a few moments by such behaviour.

The recipe for perpetual ignorance is: be satisfied with your opinions and content with your knowledge.~ Elbert Hubbard

A casual lie, a callous statement, a biased point of view or an irrational act will always provoke a reaction from others and quickly brand us as either being ignorant, biased or irrational. Like many of us, our society too is too quick in forming opinions without taking the time to understand the background or reasons for our reaction. Are our opinions based on facts or for good reason? Or are our opinions and actions a result of us blindly relying on other peoples opinions?

Most people are other people. Their thoughts are someone else’s opinions, their lives a mimicry, their passions a quotation. ~ Oscar Wilde

We need to learn that we do not live alone in an individualistic society. We have to learn to take responsibilities of our actions, behaviour, and speech and stop living in denial. If we truly wish to grow into better beings, and live a fulfilling life where we grow to become respectable and valuable individuals in our society, family, and life, we must strive to learn, garner a balanced and educated point of view and above all learn to control our egoistic opinions in exchange for rational and informed objective thinking. And most importantly we need to understand the fact that our opinions always changes over time. As we grow wiser with experiences and learning from them, we begin to have different opinions. What seemed wrong once will begin to appear to be right and vice versa.  Only an unwise and inexperienced individual will every hold on to an opinion stubbornly without good reason or facts.

You are young, my son, and, as the years go by, time will change and even reverse many of your present opinions. Refrain therefore awhile from setting yourself up as a judge of the highest matters. ~ Plato

It is absolutely okay to be without an opinion on a subject we are now aware or educated about. We will never indulge in a conversation or voice our argument on astrophysics or complex chemical research findings if we are not educated in the matter. We will simply appear to be stupid and idiotic rather than come across a person with no interest or knowledge in the matter. But we seemingly jump to express our opinions and take a stance on economics, global financial crisis, corporate decisions, political positions and several individual behaviours when we are not privy to the factual inner facts, workings, and reasons. Majority of us do not even know the history of currency, who holds the national and international debts, what is GDP and how it is measured, how is a country’s wealth calculated, how is a currency valued etc, yet we speak as expert economists and argue our statements on economic conditions. Studies have indicated that over 80% of home owners and car buyers do not know how a simple or compound interest in calculated on their credit purchase.  A high majority of people who consider themselves religious, and follow their faith and rituals with passion, have never taken the time to read and educate themselves on the “history” or the evolution of their religion into its current form. Many haven’t even read their holy scriptures in an effort to truly understand it.

The opinions that are held with passion are always those for which no good ground exists; indeed the passion is the measure of the holders lack of rational conviction. Opinions in politics and religion are almost always held passionately. ~Bertrand Russell

We are known by our actions, reactions, speech, and interactions with others on a daily basis. One simple lie to a child will instantaneously lose all credibility we have built in their minds because they have wisdom in the form of Google sitting right in their pockets within their phone.  Similarly, our colleagues at work, friends, family, siblings, all hold the same wisdom. Do not be fooled if someone doesn’t object to your wrong opinion by thinking that they agree with you. Often they do not find it polite or do not wish to engage in a conversation to prove you are wrong and hurt your ego in the process. But however, you have exposed your ignorance to them and hence shall be judge by this generous display of yours. So, the next time you choose to make baseless a statement, voice an uneducated opinion, offer advice, comment on a political stance without knowing the facts or history, or ridicule someone for their actions or decision, or just think of someone as a stupid person, realize that it could very well be you who is ignorant, uneducated an ill informed and there by exposing your blatant ignorance and damaging your personal image and creditability. Never misunderstand others generous tolerance of your ignorance and refusal to dispute your views as an agreement to your point of view. Generally people are nice like you are to others. Strive to learn and educate yourself with facts and history of the matter, be it your own religion, a political view point, an economic condition or any subject matter. Read, learn and form unbiased and fact based knowledge. Be wise, well read and become valuable to others by your educated opinions, advice and support. Ignorance is blissful only when you accept that you are ignorant.

I never make the mistake of arguing with people for whose opinions I have no respect. Edward Gibbon


Progressive People, Regressive Religions


I would rather live my life as if there is a God and die to find out there isn’t, than live my life as if there isn’t and die to find out there is. ~ Albert Camus

 

An interesting fact prevails in all of these various religions that were established at different times based on different messages from different Prophet’s in different cultures. The surprising fact lies in the “similarities” in these “religious” systems. The message and the moral basic core principles are identical. When one investigates further, we can see that there are many similar rituals practiced by the followers of all these various faith systems including monotheistic and polytheistic ones. For example, the similarity of two faiths and belief systems which is widely considered to be opposing in fundamental concept, Islam and Hinduism have quite a few similar rituals: one being monotheistic and against idol worshiping, while the other a polytheistic, with an idol for each of their gods and their respective attributes. They both have holy water, both have the practice of circling around their place of worship (Muslims around Kaaba, and Hindus around their temple), both cut their hair after pilgrimage, both fast, both offer sacrifices, both bow to their Gods. Further, they have the same beliefs in good and bad, love, peace, and respect. Yet it is believed by their respective followers as an opposing religion surprisingly.

No man ever believes that the Bible means what it says: He is always convinced that it says what he means.  ~George Bernard Shaw

 

People have progressively evolved into more intelligent beings but religions havent. Hence, as man becomes more intelligent, the religions and several rituals and illogical practices are losing value and significance rapidly. As people evolved and developed into more intelligent beings, so did their ability to comprehend, learn, communicate and better understand life. In our current advanced age and time we still have trouble communicating and understanding our own language, nuances, behavior and most importantly controlling the integrity of a message, which only proves that this communication skill is still in a state of evolution and will continue to be so. Thus, many people who try to learn the doctrines and writings of this man-made religion happen to question aspects of it which doesn’t appear to be logical or make sense. Many such doctrines are questioned on a few selective messages therein which clearly doesn’t appear to be part of those with divinity. Particularly, messages that defy or contradict equal respect for both genders, tolerance and respect for all religions, serving humanity regardless of race, color or creed, be forgiving, how to be modest, and rights of all human beings to be equal. Such differences between what the Prophet’s preached which is considered to be divine and what the religion proclaims has caused many to explore these religious beliefs further. The result of such questions which are often considered as blasphemy in nature by the stubborn and illogical religious heads of these religions has provided very few logical answers that are convincing. Clearly, man has evolved much further than expected by those who formed these religions a few thousand years ago. It is quite disappointing to still watch a small portion of the more educated and advanced people of today often blindly follow a specific fundamental set of religious beliefs and practices that often defies any logic, divinity or are in line with the original messages by their own Prophets. Although we witness each generation evolving into more intelligent begins than the last, many of us still trust and follow the wisdom of people who lived several generations past. This is where people began to shift their faith from God of mankind to religion. Perhaps in a way a shift from humanity to community.

I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ. ~ Mohandas Gandhi
However, no matter the religion or the respective deity or symbol, all of them preach very similar aspects of life, morals and values and often indulge in similar practices and rituals. What makes them different are the rules, laws of conduct, social norms, symbols of identity, attire, social behavior and systems of control that were developed by people who soon took control of the followers of the prophets under the banner of religion. This need and desire to control and exercise power over the respective communities or followers, gave birth to the evils that human beings fester till date. Ego, pride, arrogance, and vainglory are some of the key characteristics of these appointed spiritual or religious leaders of these faith systems today. Surprisingly, these are the same characteristics of Satan under which he refused to obey God and bow to his creation – man. Under these very influences these leaders often abuse their power and try to manipulate their people to achieve their personal goals and egoistic aspirations. They often are very wise and recruit people who are accustomed to obeying commands blindly due to fear of persecution from the powerful. But the true shock is when educated people armed with some basic rational thinking also choose to blindly follow such leaders and actively participate or support in their egocentric and political aspirations under the pretext of religion.
This is my simple religion. There is no need for temples; no need for complicated philosophy. Our own brain, our own heart is our temple; the philosophy is kindness. ~ Dalai Lama
Before one speaks of his or her religion, it pays a lot to get educated a little about the true and unbiased history, inception, growth and evolution of thier faith system. History has proved time and over again, that all of the popular religions or faith systems of today had begun with peaceful intentions. Each of these religions were spread with humble intentions but each had a handful of leaders who used violent force unfortunately due to their individual choice, limited wisdom, ego, and the lack of any other system available to them but religion as a viable political system to manage people and install familiar culture that is easier to manage. Each of these “religions” went through a phase of power struggle soon after their inception and the demise of their  Prophet. In the immediate years to follow, each had their share of religious leaders trying to use and manipulate the then political leaders and kings to their advantage, each have good followers and bad ones, all of these religions had leaders who were good and bad as well, every religion has their share of positive social and scientific contribution by people from their faiths. Some had great builders and ambitious plans to expand their cultural richness, some were conquerors of different strategic lands and some tried to spread their culture, beliefs and religious practices by force. But regardless of the religions or practices, all have the same fundamentals of good values and morals and each have their own set of social rules and norms that drive and influence behaviours based on moral living, love, tolerance, peace, justice and faith in the creator.
A just laicism allows religious freedom. The state does not impose religion but rather gives space to religions with a responsibility toward civil society, and therefore it allows these religions to be factors in building up society. ~ Joseph Ratzinger
I oppose religion based charities. I believe if a religion preaches to serve humanity, then the charity work should be without the need to convert their faiths. Not in this age and time. The people of faith, especially who are seen or hold the position as leaders or experts should not speak words of hate, anger, rage and incite such concepts in people. If anything, these are the people who should be preaching tolerance, love, peace and instill hope, faith, and inspire morality. But all that we see is many such people doing exactly the opposite and tragically people following them like cattle. People of good faith should rather strive to inspire others by their character, demeanor, deeds, love, respect for others as opposed to their attire, communal strength, and rituals.  And above all, should evolve with time. The need for progressive evolution has become more essential now more than ever. Past mistakes of others and poor past leaderships should be left in the past and we need to see ourselves as the new builders of society.
That deep emotional conviction of the presence of a superior reasoning power, which is revealed in the incomprehensible universe, forms my idea of God.  ~ Albert Einstein
If we can primarily be human beings and begin to behave like one that could alone ignite a flame of enlightenment. Do not choose to be blinded by your faith systems, and live in the assumption that your faith is the only path to heaven. If this is true, the creator would not have sent several prophets. Followers of the wrong faiths could be wiped off this planet if the creator chooses, followers of other faiths will not be prosperous and happy, followers of other faiths will not have their prayers answered and people who follow wrong faith systems will not be able to procreate and give birth to pure innocent souls. Thank the creator for life, for making us human, giving us the ability to think, creating us and this world with all its endless resources, our ability to learn and appreciate, love, be loved, procreate, help others, and appreciate his or her divine powers being exercised on us and creation every day. Do not be blinded and instead choose to thank for a man-made religion, rituals, age-old beliefs and fables, or mundane stories of proof less miracles. Learn, read, explore and understand. Do not blindly follow like a cattle but use your own ability to seek, read, learn, think, understand for yourself. Be sensible enough to differentiate between the man who speaks the words of compassion and love from the scriptures from the man who speaks of hate, intollerance and prejudice in the name of religion. If we refuse injustice towards one and all regardless of their cast, creed or color we can bring change. If we can lead by example of character rather than a display of costumes and rituals we can creat a positive influence. If we can be charitable to all humans regardless of their religion, color or culture we will bring peace. With such a balanced approach and the will to coexists by mutual respect and understanding and by removing ego and pride from the equation, mankind can and will eventually develop a much more peaceful and resourceful living. They can leave behind a life of love, and peace for their loved ones to enjoy, thrive in and sustain for the other following generations to come. But we must remember to eliminate the dreaded characteristic of the evil: “ego and pride” especially associated to our faiths and our belief systems as it has no place in there. We need to realize that if we feel the need to keep our faiths, then we need to keep the faith in God of mankind as opposed to the man-made religion, religious leaders, religious systems, rituals and beliefs. Learn and seek yourself for the truth and answers using your logic and intelligence and you shall find it. If God does exisit then it is only in your heart where he or she lives and in your conscience where the truth resides.
I love you when you bow in your mosque, kneel in your temple, pray in your church. For you and I are sons of one religion, and it is the spirit. ~ Khalil Gibran

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