Thursday, January 16, 2003

Didn't study for German exam; Not studying for German exam, it seems.

I burned the holy living hell out of my mouth last weekend. I thought it would have cured by now, giving my super human healing faculties, but no, it's hanging on and getting on my nerves.

I couldn't sleep last night. So, I was thinking about intelligence and humility. It seems I spend a lot of my time acting a lot less intelligent than I really am, just to fit in with folks. And even though I spend so much time that way, people still seem to think that I'm almost snobby smart. That comes off sounding pretty arrogant, I know. But the reality of the situation, I think, is that most people - or at least Americans anyway, since they're all I can really judge - really do their best, from the time they're little kids, to not get too smart. And if they do go out and learn anything, accidentally, they do their best not to show it.

It's strange because it's really not akin to other human traits. Take physical strength, for instance. No one, when they're small thinks to himself, "Oh, better not get too strong, or learn to run too fast, or how to wrestle well; nobody will like me." People who can run fast are praised in society. People who are strong are considered desirable. Every woman wants a strong man to protect her and provide for her and all that. But oddly enough, people who develop their brains are considered highly suspect.

I have two general guesses as for why. The first is, intelligence spends a lot of time telling you not to do the things you feel like doing. We're all familiar with the phrase "my brain said no, but my heart said yes." Intelligence is a bit like religion in this regard. Everybody ascribes to it somewhat, and sure it promises a better life; but, in the meantime, regular folk free to suspend the normal workings of such, to kick back have a beer and visit the old mistress for a while. The second guess is, we live in a culture that's been against deep thought from the start. We like actions, not intentions; we want results, not theories. Idle hands are the devil's workshop, so stop your reflection and get to work, damnit.

As for humility, I remember reading a quote somewhere that went something along the lines of: "The true way to be humble is not to stoop until you are smaller than yourself, but to stand at your real height against some higher nature that will show you what the real smallness of your greatness is." Even though they're enough to drive me crazy, the natural differences in human intelligence aren't really so great. In my family, I'm considered rather tall for a girl; but in the greater society 5'4" isn't really so tall. And the differences between someone who, though I don't believe tests can determine intelligence, gets an A on a test and someone who gets a C, aren't really so great when you consider the difference between a mentally handicapped person and your average Mensa member. And because I believe there's infinite knowledge in the world, I can say that, there's absolutely no noticable distinction at all between a mentally handicapped person and a Mensa member, when they're measured against God.

Mom's griping she wants the computer; better get off. See in you a few hours folks.