Just mere life is not victory, just mere death is not defeat.

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Sunday Evening Thoughts

Whenever you hear, see, or read something which challenges your direct perception of reality you have several options.  The majority of people will simply have an emotional knee jerk reaction, either stemming from cognitive dissonance or from the dunning-kruger effect.  The issue is that it is extremely difficult for the person experiencing this base level response to understand that, it takes not only experience but the willingness to accept reality as it truly is instead of responding to that person or concept negatively, emotionally, through weakness.  This is the group which has not experienced the serious repercussions of their statements, beliefs or actions.  This is where the "boot" or "rookie" fit in that simply cannot stop talking about something or "knowing better" than the senior trying to teach them.  This is where the mid-level guy who just met the bare minimum requirements at their job resides, this is where the person who does not have their life going well because of their inability to accept simple truths in reality reside.  This is where the person who is on the second or third step on the ladder when they should be in the middle or the top.  A lot of people fall into this particular category and you can easily fall back into it depending on the particular situation or circumstance.  Being successful in a particular job, activity, skill set, being monetarily wealthy or a supervisor does not immediately kick you out of this category, in fact the more responsibility you have the higher the chance there is of you falling back or staying in this category.  

There are is a slightly smaller group of people who will be able to fend off an outwardly visible weak reaction of emotion, that does not mean they do not experience it, the opposite, they experienced it so many times that they have learned that they must stop themselves from appearing as though they are having this reaction as it will stigmatize them to others quickly, but that reaction is still occurring, just under the skin.  The physical manifestation of this response may be utter and complete silence (deer in head lights) or it may trigger a defensive articulation of some sort.  That is better than the vile and weak base response first listed, as these are the people who have experienced the backlash of having made those mistakes and have learned from them.  Fallacy projection is common here, but not because of inexperienced, but because there are still some truths which are very difficult to accept as they may turn their world view and their life on its side.  This is where many upper-mid level to upper-level managers/supervisors reside, along with those who accept dogma without question.  Both of these types of people have gone through the processes of accepting that there is a way to the world and have accepted this as a default fact of life.  The issue is, of course, that is not actually how reality works in some of those cases, but only appears to work that way in their particularly small part of reality, and there is always an exception to the rule which is coming around the corner.

There is an even smaller group who have experienced the cold hand shake of reality, during which they have lost, suffered, tired and worked endlessly, hurt themselves or others and still struggle to make their way through reality as it is, by its very nature, very difficult and hazardous.  These are the people know you can have a normal, competent and non-hostile conversation with about topics which are very difficult to cover with the people in the first two groups above.  Those who accept the sincerity of people and take them at their word without any concept that they may be deceptive as they are providing evidence, either through experience or empirical, to support their stances and experience.  These are the people who live their lives in a near stoic way.  This way requires a lot of experience and education, not about any particular topic but about life and about reality.  It requires a logically based approach to how life and reality intertwine.  There is a lot of upkeep here, and those who live here are constantly working to try to better themselves everyday, because yesterdays version of themselves is not going to be as strong as today's through their actions.  

The smallest group of people are those who do not react to anyone about anything.  They simply disregard what others tell them and replace it with their understanding of life and reality.  These types of people are normally socially awkward and difficult to get along with, they are also not always correct in their understanding of reality or life as they do not have anyone to "check" them when they go out on their frozen lake (a concept I learned from TTK).  

You should know that depending on the circumstance or situation you may find yourself being in one group or another.  A medical doctor is probably pretty versed in how reality and life are as medicine and healthy living apply to them, but they may be in that first category when it comes to their love life.  These concepts are very much dependent on the circumstance and situation, this is why when A-List hollywood actors make political statements that first groups listens to them, its a knee jerk reaction to their wealth and status.  Those in the smaller groups know that those same actors did not make their money from their political opinions and they should be disregarded as that's not their particular expertise.  If that same hollywood actor were to speak about acting and how to find a good role, yeah you should probably listen, but unless they've proven an expertise in that particular field they should be disregarded almost immediately.  Extreme success in one field does not carry over to anything else unless proven through evidence.