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NOTABLE! The Blind Men and the Elephant (why you are wrong)

mikey3times

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I'm frustrated by many of the arguments here about whether you should do A or B...how people who do A (or B) are stupid. Most notably in my mind are the threads about how buying a house is stupid, how going to college is stupid, and how learning to program is stupid.

Usually, these threads go on longer than necessary as we try to validate our own choices by criticizing the choices of others. Criticizing is easy. Choosing your path is hard.

I'm all for a good debate where we say, "in this particular case, you may want to consider..." Let's take a minute to realize that each of us sees things differently based on our situation and there is no decision that is correct 100% of the time for 100% of the people.

Alas, here is a poem for your enjoyment...

The Blind Men and the Elephant
John Godfrey Saxe (1816-1887)

It was six men of Indostan
To learning much inclined,
Who went to see the Elephant
(Though all of them were blind),
That each by observation
Might satisfy his mind.

The First approached the Elephant,
And happening to fall
Against his broad and sturdy side,
At once began to bawl:
"God bless me! but the Elephant
Is very like a WALL!"

The Second, feeling of the tusk,
Cried, "Ho, what have we here,
So very round and smooth and sharp?
To me 'tis mighty clear
This wonder of an Elephant
Is very like a SPEAR!"

The Third approached the animal,
And happening to take
The squirming trunk within his hands,
Thus boldly up and spake:
"I see," quoth he, "the Elephant
Is very like a SNAKE!"

The Fourth reached out an eager hand,
And felt about the knee
"What most this wondrous beast is like
Is mighty plain," quoth he:
"'Tis clear enough the Elephant
Is very like a TREE!"

The Fifth, who chanced to touch the ear,
Said: "E'en the blindest man
Can tell what this resembles most;
Deny the fact who can,
This marvel of an Elephant
Is very like a FAN!"

The Sixth no sooner had begun
About the beast to grope,
Than seizing on the swinging tail
That fell within his scope,
"I see," quoth he, "the Elephant
Is very like a ROPE!"

And so these men of Indostan
Disputed loud and long,
Each in his own opinion
Exceeding stiff and strong,
Though each was partly in the right,
And all were in the wrong!


 

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MJ DeMarco

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Though each was partly in the right,
And all were in the wrong!
 

dave773

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The poem is good. But your translation, your message and its relevance to this forum makes it a great poem.

Thank you for this.
 

Andy Black

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vshetty.vs

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This is very similar to a quote from a TV show I watch
"People Live their Lives bound by what they accept as correct and true. That is how they define "Reality" . But what does it mean to be "correct" or "true"? They are merely vague concepts... Their "Reality" may all be a mirage. Can we consider them to be simply living in their own world, shaped by their beliefs?"
 

mguerra

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I'm frustrated by many of the arguments here about whether you should do A or B...how people who do A (or B) are stupid. Most notably in my mind are the threads about how buying a house is stupid, how going to college is stupid, and how learning to program is stupid.

Usually, these threads go on longer than necessary as we try to validate our own choices by criticizing the choices of others. Criticizing is easy. Choosing your path is hard.

I'm all for a good debate where we say, "in this particular case, you may want to consider..." Let's take a minute to realize that each of us sees things differently based on our situation and there is no decision that is correct 100% of the time for 100% of the people.

Alas, here is a poem for your enjoyment...

The Blind Men and the Elephant
John Godfrey Saxe (1816-1887)

It was six men of Indostan
To learning much inclined,
Who went to see the Elephant
(Though all of them were blind),
That each by observation
Might satisfy his mind.

The First approached the Elephant,
And happening to fall
Against his broad and sturdy side,
At once began to bawl:
"God bless me! but the Elephant
Is very like a WALL!"

The Second, feeling of the tusk,
Cried, "Ho, what have we here,
So very round and smooth and sharp?
To me 'tis mighty clear
This wonder of an Elephant
Is very like a SPEAR!"

The Third approached the animal,
And happening to take
The squirming trunk within his hands,
Thus boldly up and spake:
"I see," quoth he, "the Elephant
Is very like a SNAKE!"

The Fourth reached out an eager hand,
And felt about the knee
"What most this wondrous beast is like
Is mighty plain," quoth he:
"'Tis clear enough the Elephant
Is very like a TREE!"

The Fifth, who chanced to touch the ear,
Said: "E'en the blindest man
Can tell what this resembles most;
Deny the fact who can,
This marvel of an Elephant
Is very like a FAN!"

The Sixth no sooner had begun
About the beast to grope,
Than seizing on the swinging tail
That fell within his scope,
"I see," quoth he, "the Elephant
Is very like a ROPE!"

And so these men of Indostan
Disputed loud and long,
Each in his own opinion
Exceeding stiff and strong,
Though each was partly in the right,
And all were in the wrong!


Right on the spot.
 

Velocke

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I’ve heard variants of the blind men/elephant story, but not seen it in poem form! That’s great.
 

JunkBoxJoey_JBJ

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Alas, here is a poem for your enjoyment...

The Blind Men and the Elephant
John Godfrey Saxe (1816-1887)

It was six men of Indostan
To learning much inclined,
Who went to see the Elephant
(Though all of them were blind),
That each by observation
Might satisfy his mind.

The First approached the Elephant,
And happening to fall
Against his broad and sturdy side,
At once began to bawl:
"God bless me! but the Elephant
Is very like a WALL!"

The Second, feeling of the tusk,
Cried, "Ho, what have we here,
So very round and smooth and sharp?
To me 'tis mighty clear
This wonder of an Elephant
Is very like a SPEAR!"

The Third approached the animal,
And happening to take
The squirming trunk within his hands,
Thus boldly up and spake:
"I see," quoth he, "the Elephant
Is very like a SNAKE!"

The Fourth reached out an eager hand,
And felt about the knee
"What most this wondrous beast is like
Is mighty plain," quoth he:
"'Tis clear enough the Elephant
Is very like a TREE!"

The Fifth, who chanced to touch the ear,
Said: "E'en the blindest man
Can tell what this resembles most;
Deny the fact who can,
This marvel of an Elephant
Is very like a FAN!"

The Sixth no sooner had begun
About the beast to grope,
Than seizing on the swinging tail
That fell within his scope,
"I see," quoth he, "the Elephant
Is very like a ROPE!"

And so these men of Indostan
Disputed loud and long,
Each in his own opinion
Exceeding stiff and strong,
Though each was partly in the right,
And all were in the wrong!


With everything going on today, this thread is so worth the bump. Good or bad, positive or negative, politics, markets, etc. Perhaps a healthy little reminder.

Believe half of what you see and nothing of what you hear.

As much as things have changed in 5, 10, 20, 30 years, isn't it true many things have actually stayed the same...especially in the slow lane?

This hyperbolic proverb "encouraging skepticism" has believed to been credited to the master of mystery and the macabre Edgar Allan Poe:

Believe half of what you see and nothing of what you hear.

Stay focused!!!
 
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