Zen is you – Be.


Posted in development by dave225 on January 7, 2009

Knowledge is power.

Have you ever heard that?  Do you think knowledge is power?

You’re wrong. ……

You. Are. Wrong.  Now before you become offended and tune me out – no , you’re not wrong.  But I heard a presenter tell me that once.  He went on to say that money and political position were power.  I didn’t pay attention to what else he said because I was dwelling on his statement that knowledge is not power.

And it all came down to one little letter, one little word:  “A”.  Knowledge is A power.

¨ Language is a power

¨ Money is a power

¨ Political position is a power

¨ Standing behind the lectern is a power

¨ Violence – is a power.

Power exists in different concentrations for all of us – those without a lot of money may rely on wit, some may use their spirituality to overcome a lack of political clout, some who have few options in life may turn to the power of a gun.

  1. Find your powers.  You may not be a superhero, but you have powers.  Figure out what they are.  What has led to your successes in life?  When people say “Nice job” or when you feel that you’ve done a great thing, what skills and resources did you use?
  2. Decide how/where to use it.  What can you do?  Learn how you can use your powers.  Now that you’ve discovered that you have knowledge in a certain area, what are the possibilities?
  3. Decide why to use it.  What is the gain?  My friend Andrew Pace says, “There’s no honor in being right.”  (Although I think the entire quote is from Mickey Kaus and it’s “There’s no honor in being right too soon.” But I suppose there’s no honor in pointing that out!)  You don’t gain anything by being correct if you’re not bringing people along with you.  Exercising power just to prove that you possess it is of little value to you or anyone else.  And it’s a sign of insecurity of your weakness in other aspects.
  4. Use it effectively.  Do something.  Don’t let your power go to waste.  There is no succeed or fail, there is only act.
  5. Develop and strengthen other powers.  As sure as you know what you’re good at, you also know your weaknesses.  Tapping into your natural abilities is a great place to start  – but work on everything.  If you’re like me, you’ll find that you develop fastest in areas that need the most work.

    If anyone tells you that something you value is not a power – you can prove them wrong!  Find your powers.  Use them.  Show results.

    This is also my next Toastmasters speech (spoiler alert.  oops, too late.)

    3 Responses

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    1. Andy Havens said, on January 8, 2009 at 10:07 am

      All I know is that opium is money, and time is money, so opium must be time.

      I learned that from the movies.


    2. kate gaylord said, on January 9, 2009 at 5:12 am

      Very well said. I have often searched for the words to defend the fact that knowledge is power. I love it — Knowledge is A power.

    3. Andrew said, on January 10, 2009 at 6:28 am

      Knowledge has nothing on wisdom.
      First we built information management systems.
      Then we built knowledge management systems.
      Give me wisdom management, baby.

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