Can you imagine if Spiderman had the knowledge on how to spin a web any size and catch thieves just like flies, but he didn’t ever put that knowledge to use? The Green Goblin would have wreaked havoc.
What if Captain America turned his shield into a coffee table? Or Thor only used his hammer to frame houses? Or the Incredible Hulk took a class in anger management and became boring Bruce Banner permanently?
If superheroes didn’t use their superpowers, they wouldn’t be super at all.
We’ve all heard that knowledge is power, and with great power comes great responsibility. But in my opinion, the words “to use it” should be added to the end of that sentence. What good is having knowledge and power and responsibility if you don’t use them? You gotta use that web-spinning, shield, hammer, and superhuman strength for the good of mankind to save the goodies from the baddies.
My point is: knowledge is something to be applied or used. If you don’t use it, it’s just information. A person can be loaded with information but, what good does it do for him or others if he just walks around with it in his head all day?
Another factor is the value of the information. There is a scale of value for information. This should be obvious.
For instance, I’m loaded with trivial information. I can tell you who played first base for the Minnesota Twins in 1965 or what the dog did in the night-time in the Sherlock Holmes story The Adventure of Silver Blaze, but who cares? The only good that information will ever do me is to show off while watching Jeopardy or while playing Trivial Pursuit.
Valuable information improves society or saves lives or makes a difference for the better—a heart surgeon knowing how to perform a triple bypass, a cop performing CPR, a fireman extinguishing a blaze. Many people have valuable information that can help others. But the information only becomes knowledge when it is applied and has been proven to work.
As long as knowledge remains unused, it’s just information; it’s just theory. And there is a lot of theory out there that doesn’t do anyone any good. Google the phrase “scientists now believe” if you’d like to see some of it. Scientists only have valuable information when it has been applied to a real-life situation and resolves it—thus helping others or saving lives. That is when information becomes knowledge.
There is another factor about information. Today, people have the internet. There’s a megaton of information on the internet—and just as much disinformation. If you don’t fact-check it or apply it to see if it works, you can’t separate the true information from the false information.
Knowledge is true information applied. It is this kind of knowledge that produces the power to be responsible in helping others and all mankind. It should be obvious to anyone that false information (lies) gives no one power.
In fact, when powerful people are caught lying, it is often their undoing. Remember these famous last words: “I’m not a crook.” or “I did not have sexual relations with that woman.” or “My check is in the mail.” FYI: People don’t do well when they don’t tell the truth.
Knowledge and truth are connected and inseparable. Not all the money in the world can turn a lie into truth. And the only route to the truth is through knowledge—the application of valuable true information.
Don’t let the Green Goblins of the world win. Gain knowledge. Be powerful. And use your valuable skills (superpowers) to be responsible for helping your friends and your fellow man. Be a genius.