Knowledge without Understanding is the equivalent of Bullets without a Gun. <– Like that? I just thought it up.
There is a mountain of a difference between these two words. They are very powerful in and of themselves, however together they are quite the duo.
This particular rant arose from a conversation with one of my friends where I brought up a point about someone understanding her. She rebutted saying that this person did knew her and gave examples.
The conversation died there, but afterwards it dawned on me that we were actually talking about two different things. You can know all about someone without actually knowing them.
Understanding Vs Knowledge
Knowing about someone is not overly difficult. Favorite colors, favorite songs, favorite candy.. all of these things can be just flat-out informed. You can ask someone their favorite color and then it is up to you to remember it. Same with any piece of information that you can obtain. I’m not trivializing Knowledge by any means. Knowing the likes and dislikes of the company you keep if a very valuable asset in the world of interpersonal relations.
As long as we are a species that occupy this world we need to interact with others. The ability to retain knowledge about the people in your life is key to being successful in the modern world. No one is truly shut out anymore, not with the age of globalization and communication.
But the purpose of this particular rant is that I want to illustrate that, at least to me, knowing about someone is very different from knowing someone. The “about” makes a world of difference.
To Understand someone… That is something I take great pride in when I feel like I’ve accomplished it. Understanding a person is more than just memorizing facts that you are told about them, it’s observation. It’s taking a look at what they do, and how they do it and trying to decipher why they do things that way.
For instance, someone who puts up this bold, strong front but really has this emotionally gooey certain that they refuse to let anyone see. Hell I’ve seen cases where the persona is so thick that they even forget themselves about how fragile they actually are. It is when I see this in someone that I truly feel close to someone.
To revert this back to relationships, because frankly it seems that all my rants end up on that topic at some point, and albeit there are those that would argue that I am no authority on the subject, I personally feel that I have more than an above average understanding on relationships and what is required to make them successful.
You need to know the one your with. Both the facts, and the person. Especially when it comes to women this can be a daunting task. I mean, how many guys can say that they have been caught up in the issue of, “Do This!”… *Guy gets up and does it*.. “I shouldn’t have to tell you”… and then he’s in the dog house.
Or one of my favorites is when she asks you to do something for her, like take her to a certain place that she knows you don’t like. You agree to do it, and then you still get in trouble because that’s “not the point”… she wants you to want to take her.
These are issues that you cannot solve by reading a Facebook note and finding out what her childhood pet’s name is. You have to truly understand her. I speak of women because that’s where my experience lies.. but It can apply to men too I’m sure.
You need to be able to grasp what she truly wants. Knowledge can be passed by words, but for the most part things like intent and desire are things you are going to have to figure out for yourself because sometimes what she says isn’t really what she wants.
In a relationship you need to understand the other person to the point where you know what you must to do to keep them happen. You know how to avoid unneeded confrontation, and you can make her feel like she is the only girl in the world… all of this is done through understand.. Not through obtaining Knowledge.
A guy that can look at her and know that she is upset about something, AND know how to cheer her up will trump the guy that can rhyme off her 10th grade report card.
The guy that can look into her eyes and know that she is thinking about something and knows what to say to comfort her even though he doesn’t even know the problem is way more effective than the one that will be able to rhyme off her Social Insurance Number…
Once again, before I see a backlash of people with opposing viewpoints. This is just my opinion, and I want to reiterate that I am not saying that knowledge is useless. I mean you need to gather knowledge through observation in order to understand someone. Not only that.. if you can tell her what her birthday is down to the hour.. it shows that you are interested in her.
Knowledge = Powerful
Understanding = More Powerful
Knowledge & Understand = Unbeatable.