I have experienced this when talking to people or when I read some comments that people write in the comments section below news/articles.
For some reason, we are always expecting something new. Yes. It’s like our pre-programmed disposition. For instance when I have shared a video/documentary with some friends, they go “Oh yeah, I know”, or they also say “Yeah, I saw that like two years ago”. Like always expecting to feel impressed/surprised and if they don’t, what they say it’s almost like “It’s not necessary to re-mention it. We all know that. Shut up”.
It’s like we place the emphasis on letting the other person know that we already know. What’s the point? I mean, is it necessary to always react with our Ego? Because if someone is telling something, is it really important to express “yeah, I know all you are saying. I learned it a long time ago. So, don’t get too happy because you are saying nothing new and blah blah”? Instead of just sharing and learning, we immediately want to make clear and visible who we are as knowledge. We want to feel important.
Another point in relation to this Ego Knowledge is when people correct other people’s spelling. For instance I have read some comments on internet and some of them seem very commonsensical to me, but then someone tries to let him/her down focusing on the mistakes the other person made within his/her comment. Really supportive. They go like “you’d better learn how to write, asshole” or “your opinion has no value because you don’t know how to write”.
I realize that we do not really listen/read. We place our attention in other stuff when we are communicating. We don’t want to feel less than others, we want to validate who we are as knowledge. We focus on how people make mistakes when they speak instead of supporting them or complementing what they are saying in order to create something together through a process of cooperative learning.
This is something really competitive. I relate it to when I was like 15 years old and I was learning how to play the guitar. At first, I hated the guitar, because for some reason I related the guitar to those kids that play in churches and my mom said to me “Pablo, you spend too much time here in the house. You could go out, make some friends, participate in the church playing the guitar”.
So, every time I saw people playing the guitar, my first reaction was “fucking christians. I hate their guitars”.
Until one day, I became a fan of the band Blink 182 and I saw a guy playing their songs and I got “Impressed”. It was something “New”. I learned how to play the guitar just because I realized that other types of songs could be played on the guitar lol.
The process was slow but I practiced everyday. I thought I played really bad, but when I heard someone playing the guitar and he was slower than me, I then expected the right moment to play the guitar and show off how fast I was. And those guys were always “wow, dude, you play really good” and that made my ego bigger and bigger.
It’s like we always have this "special move" that we want to show in order to get something. We know with whom to do it and with whom we shouldn’t. For instance we wouldn’t do it in front of the people we have defined as “better" than us. But, when we are just meeting someone, we would like to show them who we are in order to avoid perceiving that others are perceiving us as inferior = validating ourselves.- Instead of leaving aside our self-judgments.
I picture within my mind a very basic example that is related to this behavior; Someone bought a new pair of shoes and then we go “I saw those shoes, but I didn’t buy them because they seemed stupid”. It’s like becoming “happy” through making someone feel bad. Is it really necessary? Are you aware of how often you participate in that shit?
This comes from our suppressed inferiority. Because we have judged ourselves for many years. We have been learning/becoming better “secretly” to the eyes of our “enemies” to one day show up in glory and let them know how big and important we are now through making them feel inferior. Like the worm that becomes a butterfly. The newbie that wants to become a master.
I have proven this by myself. Because when I first started playing in a band I played punk rock music, you know; out of tune, lots of mistakes and there were always these bands compounded by "older dudes" that looked at us and laughed and I saw them and thought “yay there they come, the grown up band that laughs at this fucking punk rock band”.
The years passed. I bought a very professional equipment and every time I went to play I was kind of expecting to see one of those “grown up bands” to kind of say “laugh now mother fucker”. "Look how grown up I am now".
According to me, I always saw a tight attitude on those bands. Now, I realize that it was only a mind fuck. It was how I saw the world. This led me to realize how I have done things in my life for others instead of myself. It had been more important for me to “prove” who I am in front of others instead of doing it for myself.
So, when I see this attitudes/behaviors/reactions on people it reminds me how I used to be. But, I realize that it’s not necessary to place this “wisdom” on the table and show off. That’s not the key.
If I realize I already know what others are sharing, I don’t have to believe that they want to impress me, because it’s me who is expecting something “new”. It’s me the one who is creating that mind fuck. Better listen and communicate instead of trying to let the other person know that we already know to validate ourselves.