CityVP 🐝 Manjit en The Collaborative VP of Membership • Great Minds Advanced TM 20/12/2018 · 2 min de lectura · 1,2K

I Choose Not To Know 7 Billion People

I Choose Not To Know 7 Billion People

The impetus of this post is as an extended answer to a question posed by Tausif Mundrawala about dining with complete strangers.  This buzz goes further than the comment I left on Tausif's buzz namely :

In short it is a frame of reference which does not dismiss collaboration but does not also mean that collaboration is with every possible human being in this world.  There are limits to collaboration and those limits begin with how impossible it is for me as a human being to know 7 billion people.

At the level of business it is increasingly simpler to know billions of people because big data, data mining and data analytics is becoming so powerful that it can dine on information in ways that our biological brain can never do, no matter how sophisticated and complex our brains are in terms of all the things it is capable of doing.

So I choose NOT TO KNOW 7 Billion People for the simple reason that I cannot accomplish that "God-Like" feat.  More so the discernment piece I left at the end of my comment to Tausif means that I am free to create relationships that are relevant to my own existence and in "knowing people" less is considerably more. 

Just because we have read a biography of a person does not mean that we "know them" and that is for the simple reason that they do not know us just because we had individual access to an offline book or an online biography outline.  We don't know famous celebrities and we don't know personal brands - celebrities, influencers and personal brands simply make the inference that we should know them.  Just because the inference is marketed does not mean that we know them.

Now if my family got me to attend a lunch where the people that are known to them are of no relevance to me or worse a complete personality clash that is far removed from the person I am, then, it is possible that I will be drawn in to social niceties but that is hardly me being me.  It is hard enough escaping poor social habits like being people pleasers without creating a faux relationship, one that I have no intention of buliding, supporting or developing.

At the business level I am more than happy not engaging business with every Tom, Dick or Harriet with a business card. There has to be a real fit, coupled with a deeper level appreciation of the other.  Just because we have mastered how to collaborate does not necessarily mean that we should collaborate - for the most part it is frightening how easily we are conditioned in a virtual social network space.  There is certain collaborations that are simply not worth existing in a dumb downed environment. 

Being selective is being prudent.  We engage more prudence with financial instruments than we do with authentic human relationships.  If we cannot know the name of every human being on this planet, we at least need know that the freebie door of instant gratification social networks is not who we are, or at least not who I am.

I appreciate that the tribe that I work or have worked with is one that is known to me but if this knowing is an extended superficial layer then what are the roots which I am fashioning my very existence?  Just as Founder Values provide us an opportunity to step in the shoes of pure genius, the very stepping into those shoes is not particularly healthy for the medical and prescriptive Pharma legacy.

I choose not to know 7 Billion People and this year I was exposed to only  a handful of faces, and typically the bane of my professional demeanor is forgetting faces and names.  I should keep a flip pad of possible connections that lists people that probably have not lost touch with me, but keeping such a flip pad only serves to turn me into a slave of an auto institution.   Just because the social invitation makes it relatively easy to connect with people, discernment allows to ensure we connect to people who can considerably add value and maybe to our own gene pool.

I choose to know a handful of people because I can and what I cannot do, well there is the rub, I cannot do.


CityVP 🐝 Manjit 23/12/2018 · #12

#11 Yes a stranger indeed is a friend that you have not met so I do have an affinity for lurkers online and the silent majority offline but the difficulty is a "wedding invitation" dilemma. We can get an "x" number of seats at a wedding function but we cannot invite everybody we know - some people will inevitably not be invited and those can be relatives and not just distant friends. At the same time I do see the brilliance in people and I love connecting with brilliant people, but how many of these people can I connect with before I spread myself too thin. Finally there is our language and disposition, where we are told that our success is related to how generous we are, but generosity with money is a very different thing to generosity with attention. Ultimately not knowing someone and saying goodbye to a person forever isn't that much different other than the latter has built up relationship memory, that is the opportunity cost of not knowing those we would have loved to have known. If I choose not to know 7 billion people because I cannot then that makes the footprint of what is sustainable connection more manageable and discernible - then w suddenly find that we do have time for those people closer at home whose attention got sacrificed because we got engulfed or busy with knowing so many outside our home.

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Ken Boddie 23/12/2018 · #11

Like you, Manjit, I am careful with whom I choose to make friends, and I guess, by default, I also "choose to not know 7 billion people", plus or minus a few million or so (brilliant concept, by the way). Unlike you I am not a 'target' at functions for one sided business relationships loaded with ulterior motives, primarily because, these days, I no longer carry out consulting work, being semi-retired, and am not in the position of being able to grant favours. Furthermore. I am fortunate enough to be able to teach and mentor when resident in the office, rather than running with the wolf pack chasing down the same weary game and occasionally lifting my leg, or dumping my snout in the pig trough of corporate greed. It follows then that on social occasions I tend to be fairly relaxed, not constantly on my guard, and generally willing to engage in conversation with .... whomever. It's also an Aussie thing to say g'day to all and sundry and to commence engagement with "How's it going", knowing, of course, that in polite society this is not taken as an invitation to actually telling me how it's going.

Getting back to Tausif's Dining with Strangers post, what I found strange was that many of his table companions appeared to ignore each other altogether, a rare situation to encounter in the Antipodes.

When all's said and done, "today's stranger is a friend you've not yet met", or words to that effect.

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Gerald Hecht 22/12/2018 · #10

#7 Very nicely articulated...and, IMO, this is not an easy concept to make "viewable" --like an intricate pop-up in an otherwise dense sociology or "metaphysics of civilization" treatise!

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CityVP 🐝 Manjit 22/12/2018 · #9

#8 I would not say distorted but definitely interactions through our learned ways of the group. Take "Sawubona" - it sounds like we have hit on an idea that makes the other more immediate and what is harder to do, maintain a dyadic interaction. In this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2IjUkVZRPK8 one would think the people who like this idea have cracked the code, but it is still manifested as an idea of the group. We can have a conversation on a train and a third person would be considered an eavesdropper, but the socially engineered experience we experience online is not much interested in unique dyads - or that true sawubona, if indeed it is even possible. Poor old Guy Debord killed himself after he had explained how we embrace image, maybe that is all we can do but I want to experience something different, something individual.

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Gerald Hecht 21/12/2018 · #8

#7 @CityVP 🐝 Manjit ahh --I think i see what you're driving at (tell me if I'm close) --"archetypes" (perceptions and/or memories of same), and the "distorted spectacles" that potentially skew our legitimate interactions if we become unaware that we are looking through them. The :psychological prisons" constructed when we start to think/speak in colloquial use of collective pronouns such as "they", "us vs. them", etc...
Am I warm? I have become very rusty in metaphysical language...I offer not excuses --I've had some speedbumps lately...gone a bit soft philosophically.

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CityVP 🐝 Manjit 21/12/2018 · #7

#4 It is not of course a task @Gerald Hecht it is more an emotional straight jacket. The 7 Billion contain within it, its share of jerks (though they are not representative of the majority) they do tend to hold in our memories simply because we are not laser focused on the flesh and blood we know and can get to know, instead we talk in terms of the "World" and "People" and "We" and "Them" - so I agree with you and that is what I am saying here, that I choose not the generalization of the mass but the specifics of our relationships. The toughest thing to surrender and return to the mass is the memory of people whose actions have been burned deep into our psyche. The line that is important in the completion of the title of this buzz is "because no human can know 7 billion people". Yet how much of my mind contained weight in the past of memories of people whose actions are no longer relevant to the way of life I know presently - yet we all carry that baggage and personally for me this buzz is me letting go of that baggage. That is as real a choice as I have ever made.

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CityVP 🐝 Manjit 21/12/2018 · #6

#3 Ultimately people who are satiating themselves and living life like that represent the kind of people that are depicted in movies like the Matrix. At the minimum our human response to that is to have compassion for them that they they are not present to life, only absorbed by their own wants and desires. Compassion at the same time is an energy, just as willpower is an energy and so by not spreading ourselves so thin, compassion can be focused on those whose lives we intimately touch - which is the very few and not the many of many. How these people enter our attention equates with how we can refocus on our attention away from strangers that remain strangers and found souls. I am less and less preoccupied by lost souls because there is life value in finding "found souls" - and that is one of the most human things we can personally do, which is to touch the lives of these souls.

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