Hey all you seed throwers

Share your views on the policies, philosophies, and spirit of Burning Man.
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Burning Compass
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Hey all you seed throwers

Post by Burning Compass » Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:31 pm

Could one of you wise people help me? I am trying to understand the wisdom of the saying

"Those who know, do not speak. Those that speak do not know"

I do not see the wisdom of this saying in a truly free society; or for a truly free individual to hold in any society for that matter. While it is true that those who know, understand that words do not generally convey the meanings of the deepest of wisdom. It is also true that those who are open even on a small level have a chance to grow by explaining one's mental path to how one found that wisdom yourself. As sometimes it takes multiple paths or "Lenses" for us to reach/look at the Truth. The synergy of the multiple path/"Lenses" better allow for us to reach the deepest depths of our own understanding.

The only two things I can come up with as a part of why this may be wise is this. That holding the knowledge of knowing something in is believed to help one gain power. Power is useful, but this also seems a bit selfish. As well as - In ancient times, and repeated through history, there have also been times where people who were wise in some ways were killed (religion, politics, etc.). This makes sense to me for a lot of parts of the world, but is this still a real fear in most first world countries (just painting a broad stroke here).

Is this a false piece of wisdom, ment to prevent the spread of wisdom itself? Or Am I back justifying my own incorrectly held belief that there may be no real wisdom in this saying in our current cultural context. I'm curious to hear all your thoughts.

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Traveller in Time
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Re: Hey all you seed throwers

Post by Traveller in Time » Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:56 am

The saying is most likely about preventing to speak out of your league.

"Infinite wisdom" would prevent one from revealing all thruth to the innocent. It would discourage/ disappoint/ ... the unknowing. (no one knows everything {?})

Anywhere inbetween, just say it :D
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Re: Hey all you seed throwers

Post by BBadger » Fri Jan 11, 2019 1:06 am

That saying is part of a larger quote by Lao Tsu, in the Tao Te Ching:

Those who know do not talk.
Those who talk do not know.

Keep your mouth closed.
Guard your senses.
Temper your sharpness.
Simplify your problems.
Mask your brightness.
Be at one with the dust of the earth.
This is primal union.

He who has achieved this state
Is unconcerned with friends and enemies,
With good and harm, with honour and disgrace.
This therefore is the highest state of man.

― Lao Tsu, Tao Te Ching

There are other translations of that as well. The book itself is about The Way of Integrity -- which I have not read.

In some, the first lines are referring to Tao, The Way. I'll take the first two lines to mean that this state of integrity is achieved by disconnecting from worldly connections to concentrate (or disconcentrate) on just being. Also that those who proclaim to know are in fact defeating the purpose of The Way.

The above interpretation is just from a cursory read of what I found via searching for that quote. You might be better served reading Tao Te Ching itself to understand the meaning for yourself.
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Re: Hey all you seed throwers

Post by Canoe » Fri Jan 11, 2019 9:42 am

Burning Compass wrote:
Thu Jan 10, 2019 7:31 pm
... "Those who know, do not speak. Those that speak do not know" ...
A simple example of how it used in Western culture may be: someone that decided they know why there are fires in California, stuck on one contributing factor that managed to register in their mind, then they're spouting off all over that they 'know' the cause. All the while ignoring or unable to understand the numerous more significant factors, and unable to balance them towards developing a comprehensive understanding. That could be explained as when that understanding proved to be too difficult of a task, they focused on the first factor that was simple enough for them to comprehend on its own. Which left them looking around clutching at straws to try and make that one factor work as an explanation in their mind, making up 'supporting facts' to try to bolster it up every time it showed as inadequate. Sorta like being determined to make an oversized square piece of wood fit into numerous round holes, oval holes, triangular holes.

Or those who made it to Burning Man one year, and it was a lucky walk-in-the-park year for temperature, winds, weather, etc.. Then they start spouting off everywhere they can that there's no need to take any of the precautions for conditions at Burning Man.

But those only illustrate the backside, 'those that speak do not know'. Which could support my making those examples as 'those that speak do not know'.

An example with both sides could be this that turns up with variations:
The lady-of-the-night who complained to the bartender that none of her clients are nice men; why can't one of her clients be a nice man. The bartender wisely kept his mouth shut and polished glasses.

But I'm stuck with this image of a puppy dog chasing its tail.
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some seeing eye
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Re: Hey all you seed throwers

Post by some seeing eye » Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:43 pm

Mr Badger is on the right track. That document was originally written on bamboo strips about 400-600BC, a few lines at a time and then the strips were strung together on a string to keep them in order.

They were copied by hand, things added, things subtracted and they were accidentally rearranged when they came off the string until the earliest copies we have dating to about 300BC and 168BC were found. Adding to the mystery, the Chinese language continuously changes, each character can have several meanings and the Chinese language in this context is poetic and vague compared to English.

That being said, one way to interpret those words in burner context is that the example you set by doing is much more important than what you say. I think that is the original context too.

TL:DR Burningman is a do-ocracy not a social media-ocracy.
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Re: Hey all you seed throwers

Post by Lonesomebri » Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:20 pm

“The problem with the world is that the intelligent people are full of doubts, while the stupid ones are full of confidence.” ― Charles Bukowski

"Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt. ... Wise men speak because they have something to say; Fools because they have to say something." -Unknown Quote
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