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Practically my whole life I've been told I'm fairly intelligent. Parents, friends, teachers, classmates, co-workers; though the truth of it is that I don't feel the slightest bit smart. I spent my senior year of highschool in a psyche hospitals and inpatient drug and alcohol rehabs (I'm manic-depressive); without getting into details I very barely graduated.

The reason I believe people call me smart is because I have never had a problem learning things. I never got below A's on my tests in any subject, and yet I passed those classes with D's because I refuse to do homework. People told me all my life college would be different; I would get to study what I wanted and it would be less focused on homework. But now I am in my second semester with a sub 2.0 gpa and on academic watch because I continued to just attend lecture score well on tests and refuse to waste my time on homework.

It isn't as if I'm partying and fuarrrking around instead of doing homework, I read books. I read a soykaf ton of books, about a bunch of different subjects. I'm currently paying for my college courses with a part time job as a sushi chef and free lance php/c backend work for local businesses (the restaurant I part time at included). I read books because I enjoy it. I'm confident a sizable portion of this community is depressed, and feel certain you all can relate to wanting to do anything you can to escape it. Doing anything but programming / reading is unbearable, and frankly I don't feel going about things "correctly" is worth feeling suicidal.

Now I understand why people call me smart, I know things they don't know. But the only reason I know things they don't know is because I took some fuarrrking initiative to learn something. I feel if I was really smart I would use my talents to make something of myself or at the very least not constantly put myself on a path that is self destructive.


Are you smart? Do people tell you you're smart? Is it advantageous to be smart?
Pic related, some OC lain wallpaper for your collections.


Smart is good, but somebody that learns things and then applies them, working hard to further goals and work with others is vastly superior in terms of opening life opportunities.

From my experience in university, workplace, and communities it doesn't matter as much how smart or how technically skilled you are, making friends/contacts and learning how to get people working together helps a lot more. It's a fact of the social world we live in. You can do so little by yourself unless you are literally a genius with a vision.

Being smart is a multiplier of sorts -- it helps, but you need other aforementioned variables to take advantage of it.


Hopefully you can sort out what I'm saying is opinion and what I'm saying is fact.

I don't think any of us are smart on the scale of the universe's subtlety and complexity. I also don't think the innate parts of intelligence, itself something we understand poorly, are worth taking pride in.

When I was in pre-school, I was given an IQ test because I had a good memory for places and details. When broken down by subscore, I was all over the place. I had below average executive functioning, totally average working memory, good but unremarkable visual-spatial abilities, and verbal abilities too good for the test to accurately measure. I don't think IQ tests are a meaningful representation of someone's comprehensive profile, but they do seem useful for predicting academic potential. I also had atrocious handwriting and spelling as well as difficulty tracking pages. Grade school was miserable for me and involved bullying---most of it from teachers. I spent most of my time in school receding into a hyperelaborate fantasy world where I built a city with imagined kids like me. I also went through phases of doubting everything: that my parents loved me, that reality was at all what it seemed, that my memories were genuine, that I was human, et cetera.

I'm in school now and can typically pass for a normal person. I turned down a top-4 school for what I wanted to study for a respectable but unremarkable in-state option that was far more affordable. I have a good GPA but it's not remarkable in my social circle. Nor, globally speaking, are my abilities. I am fortunate that I have skills and talents for which economic demand exists. That is a poor measure both of personal character and worth. I'm on antidepressants. They appear to have helped me, alongside talk therapy. My social life hasn't been very satisfying. A woman I was very much in love with ignored me.

I have noticed that many of the smartest people I know have very uneven cognitive profiles, have extremely intense emotional experiences that prove debilitating in practical settings, or are not able to prioritize what others tell them to care about, so OP's being intelligent seems plausible to me.

But just to inject some skepticism and avoid creating too much of a self-aggrandizing excuse-making insider trade, intelligence is an instrumental good. No one should care about it if it doesn't generate good in other ways. In fact, caring about it for its own sake leads to all kinds of ugly chauvinism.


dunno, i think slowly i have trouble with connecting things to one another unless you point the connection out, but i can learn very quickly, apply what i know and remember it.
At the other hand i study biotech, where you have to be quick, smart and precise.

They do, but they also know i am not very bright. Like if you ask me about biology or culture then i'll be able to answer.

Depends, you can be dick-smart, i've known few guys like this, horrible. In my opinion it's better to be smart, because it's a positive trait, at the other hand, where i live, smart people have troubles with picking up various social cues and stuff.


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Regarding intelligence, I feel like it's hard to say. Clearly persistence is worth more than raw intellect. I got high IQ score tests, advanced placement programs and the whole "look at how smart this kid is" package. It didn't stop me from ending up a juvenile delinquent who later went to college to major in the public library twice (liberal arts degree failure^2) and who now works as a third shift janitor finally figuring out his lot in life.
Being smart is still a net benefit. Having a lot of things you know (crystallized intelligence) and being able to use them creatively (fluid intelligence) is good. I wouldn't get rid of it despite how difficult it makes finding peers sometimes. It does have less real benefit if you don't put it to good use, though.

I remember reading a study about lazy geniuses once that did a lot of research on the low-end jobs a lot of seriously high IQ people end up getting for no other reason than they simply don't care about anything beyond their hobbies or interests. I definitely fall into this category where I know people appreciably less intelligent than I am who are working at software development units in prestigious tech universities and making real impact in the world.

That's my two cents, anyway.


yeah i was told im smart and soykaf too. towards the end of my senior year of hs i started to feel super disillusioned with the brainy crowd and decided i liked artists and soykaf a lot more. when i came to college my best friend/girlfriend at time was a lot more street smart and came from a very different walk of life and she kind of taught me to ignore the abstract weird soykaf in my head and see things for how they really are. The value of ignorance. Our brains make so many jumps and see them as fact. i thought she was the smartest person ive ever met, yet by any test she probably wasnt.

i know im creative even if im not smart. i know how dangerous that is too. being stupid and creative i feel like is how dangerous people who do terrible things are. your too stupid to channel that creativity into a creative skill like art, so your creativity runs rampant in other ways; horrible abstract solutions to simply solved problems, or ideas that anyone with higher inhibitions wouldnt explore (and shouldnt be explored). thankfully i am getting pretty good at drawing and also have been finding room to be creative in my computer science learnings. so maybe i wont do something dumb now like kill myself in some horrifying grotesque way or become a dictator or whatever.

yeah i think im pretty fuarrrking stupid to put it shortly. but honestly maybe people who think they are smart and know everything dont think enough. i think dumb people just saw how much they didnt know and gave up, in the same way many of the most intelligent do. to even score high on an iq test you have to give enough of a fuarrrk about the test to put thought into the questions.


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I think you can be smart in alot of different ways. Some people are creative, some are great at social interactions and others are great at logical thinking/problem solving. In the past I've been told I'm smart (by teachers and friends), though they never really went into detail as to why, or I just forgot.

Honestly though I'm terrible at being creative, in social situations and especially at job interviews, because I constantly underestimate my capabilities in my particular field due to my low self-esteem. The only thing I'm truly good at is teaching myself new skills (mainly software development) and applying those skills in the real world. It's basically how I got my first job as a programmer. I'm proud of that because school didn't teach me soykaf about programming.

>So are you smart?

In life there's only a handful of things I could solve in a smart way. So I don't think I'm smart.


I guess you could call me smart or intelligent or whatever.
But that is about the only bright side of me and it means fuarrrk all in the larger picture.
Due to my depression it is completely nullified.
I cannot focus on even the simplemost tasks most of the time, when i do it is when i become manic and get overwhelmed with ideas and things i want to do.
Otherwise almost all the thought i can muster automatic goes into the unstoppable cycle of why the world is such a terrible place and why i am such a huge worthless fuarrrkup.
If things have gone a little different i might be on top of things now, instead i ended up on the total bottom.
I cant help but wonder if would be stupid how my life would be, for far i have seen intelligence is nothing but a terrible curse, but maybe thats just me.


I think others in this thread have summed it up very well. Many of us have sufficient baseline intellect to not end up as utter failures but it's a matter of finding the drive to succeed. You can be very quickly outpaced by those of lower intellect but greater determination, and it's best to discipline yourself now rather than find that out the hard way.


>never had a problem learning things
>took some fuarrrking initiative
>I refuse to do homework

It sounds to me like you've got the PERFECT recipe for invention/creativity here. You know what they say: "Laziness is the mother of invention." And then there's that Bill Gates quote about how he'd always hire the laziest person to do something because they'd always find the most efficient way...

You just need to find a way to convince yourself that doing your homework is worth it -- because, by now, you've probably come to suspect that it is. Look at it this way: Try to see how little energy you can expend while still completing your homework. Make a "game" out of how lazily you can do it.

Or, honestly, just take some fuarrrking Adderall. You might have ADHD. (And, even if you don't, I can guarantee it'll still help.)


I did an IQ test at age 15 and scored high enough that no one here would believe me without proof. I got at least average in all categories, higher in some and chart topping in things like verbal communication. The irritating part here is that I was always told I was 'smart' and forced into the most challenging math and science classes. Meanwhile I did the worst at language based classes and my dad always said I was a poor communicator.

I now had some fair, compelling evidence to prove what I already believed about both my dad and the school; though well meaning, neither had a damn clue.

I was too depressed to stay awake in class and never finished high school. I became a drifter and never held any job more than three months. Most work I've done has been one day of odd jobbing, cash in hand. I became an alcoholic and haven't even done casual labour in several years now. People tell me I'm one of the smartest people they know but write off every conclusion I arrive at as 'negative thinking'. Wait, I thought I was the smart one so how is everything I decide wrong?

tl;dr... smart + not giving a rat's ass = NEET4lyf lol


If the Dunning–Kruger effect is true, and it almost assuredly is, then the reverse coalary must also be true: That smart people don't think they're smart.


A byproduct of being 'smart' is that you are always later seeing flaws in your previous reasoning. How could I be so stupid, etc. Everyone I know who ever scored extra high on an IQ test has said the test was flawed, an indication that they were able to look at that system and analyze it to see those flaws.

Note that I said EXTRA high. The kinda-high scorers don't make it over this intellectual hurdle and join Mensa, and then start a blog where they showcase their visual poetry or some such, list their IQ score in the profile, and mention the Mensa at every opportunity.


That's more-or-less the kind of smart that people despise, too.


I've thought about applying for Mensa just so they'll accept me and I can write back and saw "actually, nope. you guise r teh sux lol"


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Yep. Someone sitting on their computer browsing reddit and downloading a bunch of programming books they will never get 10% through are going to be beaten by that guy that works hard 8 hours a day, CONCENTRATING on tough problems and solving something. One thinks they're smart, the other knows they know nothing and aim to fix that.

Smart isn't soykaf. What have you actually created? Measure success by creating useful or interesting things.


Yeah but not everyone is able to be a surgeon or architect no matter how hard working they are. They might still be successful at something else though. It's not enough to be smart if you're lazy or have crippling social anxiety, sure, but you can't convince me that intelligence doesn't matter in some fields.


I love being a hikkikomori, though. It's great; I get to work from home, and my job pays me enough that I can just go to the conbini and get food without ever having to talk to anyone.


Intelligence matters in all fields.


You could have just said Friendship is Magic!
But indeed, unless someone is such a big shot of a CPU that the community builds a socket around him, he might as well just end up as scrap metal at the hands of a clueless junkyard operator.

I really like the point you make here
>I don't think any of us are smart on the scale of the universe's subtlety and complexity.
Most charts ever made are cropped on the ends to better fit human use; but should we think of intelligence as a sort of complexity - one that allows to abstract and emulate other, less complex systems - humans would be in a very dense little area on the scale. Making an arbitrary example, an electron would have an intelligence of 0.00001, a lizard would have 0.3, all humans would fall between 10 and 15, including the dumbest braindead and that one genius we probably don't even know about. However, being able to completely emulate (understand) a system of N intelligence, losslessly, atoms by atoms, would probably require at least a hundred times as much intelligence (a measure of complexity). This means among other things, that no human is even close to understanding any single human being, or gods forbid all of humanity. Even the smartest guy out there, while perhaps able to perfectly fool an entire village, or country, is still nowhere near to completely understanding the dumbest member of that group. The high and mighty usually overestimate the difference between human and human, but sooner or later their predictions fail and their model breaks down.

To wrap it up, intelligent people are capable of things their less intelligent peers could never do, while an intelligent person might be able to fulfill the role of a less intelligent peer. Still, this also means that the exceptionally intelligent have problems that few if any can understand, and if they cannot sort those out themselves, no one can do it for them either, leaving them mostly useless
I however must note that nobody is able to predict or judge what form of intelligence is or isn't useless, unless it has already turned out to be quite useful, so your idea of "intelligence is instrumental good" is itself pretty useless.

Smartness and intelligence is also very distinctly different; most of smartness can be learned, or reinvented on the spot; intelligence is more of an ability, or an attribute.
Highly intelligent people often have trouble in everyday situations because they are held back by or trying to avoid perceived problems that are not actually there, while a 'simple smart' person never thinks of those possibilities and just strolls through the situation.

But why, Lain? You are so smart, you could be anyone! Why don't you grab the opportunity and become <x>? Why would you waste away such great talent? So many people wish they were as clever as you, but they can't even enter university! You have it in you!

Sounds familiar?


To the extent that a severely learning disabled petson could not become a cab driver or janitor. But a person with slightly below average intelligence could be quite good at those jobs while possibly not passing the entrance exams for engineering or medical school.



You'd be surprised about your second assertion. People do unexpected things all the time. I went to a good school with a world class program, sometimes I wondered about some of the people I met there. Now they are all working in tech making bank, and I'm a neet.

I'd give 20 'iq' points for half of their work ethic. It takes a certain kind of 'stupidity' to do something like attempt to get into medical school when you've already been rejected 5 times. But I think those are ultimately the kind of people who will make the best doctors.


I've come to the realisation that I'm a fuarrrking lazy idiot who's addicted to my computer. I didn't even use my ENTIRE CHILDHOOD on the computer to learn anything. I'm shockingly ignorant


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OP here, thanks everyone for all your interesting perspectives and thoughts on the matter. You've all given me a lot to think about. I hope I provoked some thoughts of your own.

>Being smart is a multiplier of sorts
I really really really like this idea. Possibly my favorite in this thread.

> Clearly persistence is worth more than raw intellect.
I would agree that 'clearly' to most of society it is. I can't speak internationally, but here in the states public school and even college is set up to pass and graduate not people who are smart, or even people who have learned the materiel. It's set up to pass people who follow instructions. This is hardly a topic of debate. Classes in highschool especially are designed to allow students to pass on effort alone, rather than their ability to learn the materiel; so much so that it's entirely possible to pass the class without learning any of the materiel.

Now, whether you want to go the tin foil hat route and say this is because the government is farming robots to be wage slaves and never have an original thought, or you want to assert that this is simply because the overwhelming majority of employers in the country just want people who will do their job, either way it's the obedience, or persistence, that is "valued". (When I say valued, I don't necessarily mean explicitly, but it's these qualities that are rewarded with passing grades and college degrees.)

Thought the question I'd then pose is this, since blind(<-opinion) obedience and persistence are valued by employers, and are rewarded from early childhood into adulthood, is it truly advantageous to be "smart"?

>being stupid and creative i feel like is how dangerous people who do terrible things are.
100% agree, and an interesting sentiment.

>they simply don't care about anything beyond their hobbies or interests.
Exactly where I'm at right now. Not only am I completely void of motivation to chance this, I'm not entirely sure it's a bad thing at all.

Funny thing is, I work 10 hour shifts 4 days a week. Don't use reddit (gross) and finish my books. I feel rather attacked by your post, and for some reason feel compelled to tell you this doesn't apply to me in the slightest. On top of that I've created a great deal of both art (I like to write) as well as software.
>Measure success by creating useful or interesting things.
This, is the line that confuses me most. I have a plethora of interesting and useful things I've created, but am I in a position that society or our culture deems as "successful"? No, I'm not. Should I care about what society and culture thinks? Debatable, I'd say no; however, this goes back to why I made this thread. The same society that labels me smart is the society that deems me a failure. Interesting stuff man.

I am definitely addicted to my computer, but lucky enough I've learned a lot from my childhood online.


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Like most of the people in this thread, I treat raw intellect as just one part of the equation. What really counts is how you apply that intellect. I myself happen to be friends two near prodigious individuals (sounds unbelievable I know); one in the field of mathematics and the other in music. The contrast between them is a good example of the two paths one can take. Mathematics guy does not care that much about his intelligence, and instead devotes his time to improving his skills in the subjects that he works in. Music guy, on the other hand, tends to wander and never fully applies himself to any real work. As a result, despite the fact that both of them have near equal intelligence, maths guy does much better academically than music guy.

Treat your intelligence like a tool that you can use to do things, rather than an aspect of your personality. In the end people are more likely to admire a hard worker of average intelligence than a slacker with a 190 IQ.


Painfully familiar. I still get it every now and again from family and friends.


> I don't think IQ tests are a meaningful representation of someone's comprehensive profile, but they do seem useful for predicting academic potential.
IQ tests exist to measure which children will need special help in school. That is why they were invented, and that is what they do well. People use them for all sorts of things, and for a lot of those they kind of work, or work just well enough to keep being used, but they have massive flaws in everything except predicting who will need special help in school.


>Lainchan is full of intelligent, unmotivated people with a fondness for computers and a negative outlook on life.
Huh. If only we had a way to motivate each other towards getting some communal projects done to improve the fuarrrked up things of the world.
>People tell me I'm one of the smartest people they know but write off every conclusion I arrive at as 'negative thinking'. Wait, I thought I was the smart one so how is everything I decide wrong?
People would rather believe the thing that sounds nice, even when deep down they know it's a lie. Like Santa Claus.


>IQ tests exist to measure which children will need special help in school
Actually I was already a bright underacheiver when they gave me one. I was in the other kind of special ed, the kind for talented kids who are going to be bored with the regular curriculum, where admission was based on aptitude tests, not grades. Then I proceeded to suck at both the gifted program and regular class.

>People would rather believe the thing that sounds nice, even when deep down they know it's a lie.
Thanks, I need to be reminded of that. There's also a psych theory regarding 'depressive realism' which suggests that some depressed people remain so because they cannot help but see the world as it is and this keeps them in a rut. Meanwhile successful people have an often inaccurate view of their own ability and potential which allows them to attempt things beyond those abilities but somehow acheive at least partial success and keep going. It's something manic patients exhibit as well.


>but write off every conclusion I arrive at as 'negative thinking'

Negative and pessimistic thinking is a result of logical deductions. A "negative" thinker comes to conclusions based off of what has already happened.

Positive and optimistic thinking is a result of speculation, and trying to predict what could happen. A "positive" thinker believes things based off of what they believe could happen, in liu of what has happened before. That's why it's harder to do.

A negative thinker believes school next year will be terrible and boring because this year was terrible and boring. A positive think believes school next year might be incredible in spite of acknowledging that this year was terrible and boring.


I have so many thoughts and frustrations about this topic, but I'll just throw my biggest one out there for your consideration.

People mostly think about intelligence pretty linearly - if someone has 140 arbitrary quotient points while someone else has 110, the person with 140 is "more intelligent". We all know that actual knowledge doesn't work that way - you can learn a lot of things and know more than someone with a higher arbitrary score than you. The justification for looking at the score is that it "measures ability to learn new concepts; adaptability", which is done by having people do the same things they've been trained for. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

There is no possible way of creating a useful test for this, since adaptability is obviously not on a single-dimensional line, either. People catch on different things at different speeds, we just value some over others for one reason or another. Intelligence can't be shown on a single line, just like most human-related phenomena. Similarly to politics, adding more dimensions is always better, but it's always an approximation to some extent.

If you look at how IQ is measured, the only people who get somewhat accurate readings are those right in the middle, with those below generally identifiable as having some sort of learning problem, which is, of course, ignoring the non-negligible amount of those that excel at things not measured, and the people above the middle get just as inaccurate results, which sometimes fuels needless arrogance or impostor syndromes.

It's not surprising that most people here have high IQ scores - I'd conjecture that the average IQ on this site is above 115, but it's generally meaningless and reading too deep into it isn't beneficial.


i have a complex of superiority, I don't know if really I am smart or is only my imagination


>Is Lain Smart
I was often told by my family, friends, and others around me that I was intelligent. It's part of the reason I hated myself so much in high school. I tried, but my success in my classes was all over the place (every semester I would have everything from As to Cs). Despite my mediocre grades in certain subjects, I would always place well on standardised tests (above average on science+math, and in the 99th percentile for english, reading, writing, etc). I would wonder to myself why a kid who was seemingly smart did not do well in school, even when I somewhat tried to apply myself.

I very much agree with >>10181
>Being smart is a multiplier of sorts -- it helps, but you need other aforementioned variables to take advantage of it.

I was diagnosed with ADHD my last year of high school; it explained a lot to me. After I got on medication, I realized just how soykaf my natural attention span really was (focusing on one idea for more than a minute? it felt surreal to me). With my newfound ability to actually focus on tasks somewhat I say "somewhat" because even on medication my level of executive function is still below that of a normal, functioning individual I started doing much, much better in school. I am at a good uni now, studying a subject I enjoy, and getting excellent grades. Do I think I'm smart? Well, in a way, I know I am. I just have no idea to what extent; I do not think it is arrogant to consider myself at least a little bit smart if I can grasp most concepts about twice as quickly as most of my classmates, and when I have slept decently I can read textbooks rather quickly with a high comprehension rate. Even my classmate who I consider rather smart, I only need to study for two thirds of the amount of time that he does if I want to get the same grade as him.

All in all, I think it is advantageous to be smart, but you really have to apply yourself to something useful; solve some sort of problem, figure out how to do your homework creatively and quickly, find some way to have fun with your mind so that monotonous things do not seem as monotonous. When it comes to it, if I was hiring someone for a job, I'd hire someone of moderate intelligence and a strong work ethic over someone without the best work ethic, but that was incredibly smart.

Smart people are a dime a dozen (unless you are blazing brilliant), but it is not as easy to find someone who is disciplined (which is different than saying that they know how to follow orders).


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I have a completly different POV.

I have never been told that I'm smart when I was a kid. I've also never been told that I'm dumb but it was obvious since everyone gets told they are smart.
I always had trouble in school and it takes me 3 times longer to learn something compared to my peers. I read a lot of books in order to give off an educated vibe but I only understand them superficially and I always need secondary literature.

I am afraid of being dumb and I will most likely commit suicide if I get to the point where I can't deal with it anymore.


Important point made there.
Lots of people these days abstract away most of reality, and then get depressed when they mistake their abstractions, and the simplistic and bleak world those describe, for reality.
For example they might state the following:
>your consciousness, and indeed all of you is just a bunch of chemical reactions going on in your brain
This statement in itself could very well be true. See what problems it might cause.
- people who react "not just could be, it is a fact" are knee-deep in belief; while they perceive to be standing on science, science would never make a claim this hard, at most it would claim it's the best theory/most plausible explanation at the moment
- conclusion factories, people who acknowledge this being just a theory, but use it to prove or disprove things as if it was solid truth; people who build upon it, but forget to tag everything with #hypothetical or #experimental. trying to disprove stuff like soul or god based on this claim would be very similar to an esoteric energy shaman trying to prove his things with 'quantum physics'.
- pragmatists, who would argue that this statement has furthered humanity, technology, etc, and so we should go with it instead of doing fancy-pantsy philosophy like I am right now. this one is tricky, as they are not even wrong; such a pragmatist attitude brings in lots of progress ('profit') on the short and mit term, but leads to theories that become problematic in the last 5%, leading to eventual overhauls, and possibly the concept being mathematically proven to be impossible. making hard conclusions on lossy abstraction like that is the programming equivalent of starting to code now, and patch, fix, and evolve it along the way.

It's no surprise that people who make all the conclusions (and thus seemingly "know everything") often get depressed, either because there's "no way to change things" - at least their conclusions and hypotheses about them - or simply because there's no challenge left/work to be done. humans seem to need problems as much as air to function properly, and making unchallenged, "factual" conclusions based on shaky abstractions isn't helping the matter. Meanwhile those who do not take the extra step of unnecessary conclusions, or keep their theories theories until they can prove it whole-sale seems to be doing just good.
I should probably be doing that as well



I 100% wholeheartedly agree with you.

In tandem with what you've said, the only thing I know is that I don't know soykaf. The moment you think you know something is the moment you've mentally cornered yourself into believing you have something that doesn't exist; that is to say pure fact.

Think about it, no philosopher that is of any relevance or importance will ever tell you that they're right. In fact they're often the first ones to tell you they may be entirely wrong.


Let's not create a new piece of clothing that makes the wearer wise. I can't remember which school was about "all i know is that i know nothing", although I know it may be related to Socrates. I think the skeptics (middle era of the Academy) had taken that a little further and claimed stuff like "nothing can be known, not even this", a sort of epistemological nihilism thing; but they seem to have ended up making conclusions on top of it anyway.
The best I ever found on the topic was pyrrhonism, a bunch of guys who made a lifestyle out of looking for various explanations, weighing them against each other, getting utterly confused by seeing how they are all good, but none of them decisively so, and then continuing to seek answers, contemplating stuff. As far as I know they didn't even have any stance on anything, and whatever views they were said to represent are attributed to them by scholars in an attempt to try and explain their lifestyle. Only school of philosophy I know of that tried to avoid all beliefs/dogmas without getting tangled up in dogma as badly as Buddhism seems to be these days.
I suspect that Buddhism has its trouble from intentionally wrong statements made by gurus. They have no way to phrase their ideas without being dogmatic in one way or another, so they either don't say anything (somewhat related to emptiness), or just say the wrong stuff and hope that the audience will at one point see the flaws in what they said, but also catch what they had in mind and how that compelled them to say wrong things instead. I think this is where all those "dude a said x, dude b asked y, dude x answered z, and then dude b was suddenly enlightened" tales come from.

This is a sort recommendation, I guess.


listen if your not smart then dont try to be, its not a big deal honest. maybe you can find a girl/boy whos smart to figure all that soykaf out for you. and if you think your too ugly or something your not man. you might need to work out or whatever but nobodies too ugly to find someone. sometimes being hella pretty makes it harder cause people wanna hit it and quit it.

this probably is like kicking dead whales down the beach cause youve been trying and putting off this air of being smart this whole time, itl be a complete change for you. But as someone who is and was told im smart I love and learn a lot from "dumb" people. they are way more honest and keep me grounded and are usually really charming cause they dont think about every little thing they do and are okay with being imperfect. dont kill yourself over this soykaf, this fuarrrked up society tells people they are only worth as much as their intelligence and their ability to apply it but that isnt fuarrrking true in the slightest. im also gonna say being smarter doesnt make you understand the world any more, you just understand other smart peoples bullsoykaf theories about the world better and likely change your beliefs so much as you learn more that you never reach a good conclusion or if you do you gave up. i mean you might be able to do calculus or chemistry or whatever the fuarrrk better if your smart but not everyone needs to be doing that soykaf only some people do. and also in the grand scheme of things you probably arent even that less intelligent than someone considered smart. Society has just turned this soykaf into an olympic race where even being seconds slower than first place can put you in last.

dont kill yourself, all i want is more people like you in the world. not because some fuarrrked up "haha the dumb are easy to manipulate" but because i think "dumb" people are beautiful people.


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I can't even stand it when people call me smart anymore... I miss the days when a little intuition actually got me somewhere. Where I could A+ every essay I had to write because it made sense to me without even having to think about it. When I could pay attention for 1/10th of the class and not need to study. And now I'm at the point where it doesn't fuarrrking work anymore, everyone caught up to me through hard work and I don't even know how to work hard. I feel like I should be able to do this stuff just fine yet I fail every other test I get these days. Now I see things in my courses that I can't understand without studying, and the 'dumb' girl next to me has meticulous notes on every chapter and is acing the class.

>Friend: "How'd you do on the test?"
>Me: "I failed it"
>Friend: "The fuarrrk? You're really good at this"

No, I'm not any good at it and I'm failing at everything I try to learn. I'm tired of people telling me it should be easy.

People who knew me from before have some unflinchable image of me. I'm supposed to ace everything and when I don't I feel like I've deceived everyone who cares. I'm going to fail out because I couldn't keep up the standard of being good enough through smarts and not through work.

I've got two tests tomorrow and I'm going to fail both of them.

I wish I wasn't born smart, I wish I'd worked for the things I have, I wish that I could stop disappointing people


Like many said indeed i dont think intelligence in itself is very significant.
It needs to be in a context where it can applied and verified, i mean sure one could generally be a know it all and impress people with book knowledge but that doesnt go anywhere for long.
But creativity and drive are an equally vital component as knowledge and the ability to connect the dots from my experience.

Im sorry for you guys who though your wits and quick learning ability would carry you trough and now find it to be otherwise.
But dont take it too hard, the world is full of wankers and its hard finding your own place where you are good at and you know, who said you have to be good at something?
This whole obsessive competitive culture drives us all into insanity, you shouldnt let other people push you to great at something, just do what you think you like doing and learn about it as much as you can.
Its terrible how people are being pushed into things and the smart ones sadly draw the short straw in those cases.
Being lazy and smart is a useful combo and the fact that being stupid and driven is rewarded and thinking outside of the status quo being punished is awful.

Another factor is how often the people who tell us that we are smart are not smart themselfs, i wonder when were any of you told the last time you were smart by someone you could consider smart?


>Are you smart? Do people tell you you're smart? Is it advantageous to be smart?
Not by any real measure, I'm only just smart enough to know that I'm not. They used to when I was a kid, now that I'm a dropout with no future they kind of stopped. Clearly, based on everything we know smart people have much better life outcomes all things considered.

>I did an IQ test at age 15 and scored high enough that no one here would believe me without proof
Damn, you too mate? I got some stupidly high score on a test in my early teens/tweens and that was the basis of years of people telling me this soykaf. Though I took another one later on and only scored a bit higher than average, so chances are it was a fluke, or at least that early tests are not very predictive of adult performance.


> in my early teens/tweens

I think I remember reading that IQ tests are progressively less accurate over time, so the ones we take when we're ages 8-12 are more indicative than ones we'd take nowadays. But I wouldn't call one test a fluke- you obviously had the intelligence to obtain a high score on a test which has been fine-tuned through decades of experience by researchers. It seems more likely that the test you took later was a fluke.

There are definitely people cursed with being too intelligent, so to speak. I personally have the kind of smarts that allowed me to coast through high school without studying, but in uni I'm struggling because I'm only just now learning how to take notes and study. My brother, by comparison, got a much worse deal. He's crazy smart, he could probably get into the triple-9 society. Absolutely brilliant. He taught my mom how to play chess when he was 3, and could beat my dad (who is damn intelligent by anyone's standards) by age 5. He never struggled academically, but he was always surrounded by people who must have seemed incredibly dumb to him. He doesn't talk about it but my parents do- he never made any close friends until university, just because nobody was 'on his level,' so to speak. It took him a very long time to learn how to cope with that. He's not an aspie, it's just that he always had to dumb himself down to not seem strange. I'd hate that.


> smart people have much better life outcomes
Not really. Intelligence actually correlates with depression, and a lot of famous geniuses were batsoykaf (Newton, Tesla, Bobby Fischer, etc).


I understand this. I never learned how to study in a structured way and never did any homework if I could avoid it because I was doing well without it. Certain teachers even let me sleep through class saying I was doing fine anyway. Then it got to the point where brains without effort weren't enough and my study habits were so bad I just never caught up.

I can work hard and apply myself but I "learned to learn" in the library alone with a notebook. Something about the structure of classroom work made me sleepy although friends and relatives identify me as someone who knows things. My brother says I'm the "smart one". He's an accountant working on an MBA in his spare time, and has been a registered scuba and furst aid instructor. The other brother works for a firm providing internet security not for individuals but institutions. I'm an ex-hobo and born again NEET... somehow the "smart one".


Weeeeeeell... I'm gonna offer you a little piece of my mind. It's not very relevant, and it may consist of pure delusions of grandeur. I'm very narcissistic.

Most of my teachers (and relatives, but I don't think that they count. Family members usually see you as a wonderful person) always said that I was very smart. In elementary school, one of them talked to my parents about signing me in a gifted child school or something like that. I do remember elementary school with a lot of clarity. As classes were boring and simple, I was always distracted and pestering other people. Moreso, I saw violence in my home so I was a complete prick. Nonetheless (even though I see myself as fluid in a lot of fields), I always thought of myself as a people's person.
The remorse that all this suffering I have caused made me more caring about the others, and I always managed to find a way to charm people (kids were afraid of how violent I was, but adults saw me as an angel), and the toxic enviroment at home (plus all of the contact with the people that caused it) made me a brave person with a strong character (in other words, I'm a bossy douchebag, but for some reason I get away with it anyways).
So yes, I do see myself as smart. But I also discovered recently (I always percieved it, but I finally took account of this) that I'm alienated. Maybe it's my cocky demeanour.
But... I see another cause apart from being an asshat...


I get closed up in this lethargic kind of day dream-y moments. I confine myself in my head, my thoughts, and ignore reality. As if my senses still percieve what they must but my mind drifts elsewhere.
I don't see this as a disadvantage. Sometimes I like to think that there are many people like me, people that live with a foot in this reality and other foot in a different one. I don't want medication. I don't want therapy (at least to cope with this).
I'm happy with getting locked up in my head. I don't mind being alienated. I can still function as a human being, but I can see things from different perspectives: the one I'm living and the one my mind travels once in a while.
This is were it get's a little freaky: I see myself above the others. As some kind of Saviour or Prophet. I have good intentions. But I saw things as if they were beneath me, I must protect them as if they were my children, not my equals. Hard to explain, but I suppose that this is the most accurate comparation.

So, yeah. I would very much like to get rid of this narcissistic complex of mine, yet I don't want to loose touch with the other reality/my deep mind/my true self/whatever that thing is.


Man, I just read this and it sounds like crazy talk. I wonder what will my therapist will think about it.


I can relate to being sleepy in class. Had the problem all my life and am glad I'll never have to endure that again unless I should go to university again someday.


I have never been smart, nor have I ever felt smart.
I do like technical stuff though, it's like playing games. Math is beautiful, and computers can be real fun. Also knowing what's behind everyday technology. Neat.
But since I've always been dumb (and untalented, and uncreative), I lived in denial. I though technical stuff would make me appear smarter, and that with the drive I could actually get real good at technical stuff and be regarded as a really smart and skilled person.
But I am really very stupid. And I burn out quickly on technical matters, learn little, and ultimately I never make any kind of tangible progress. I would blame it on ADD (self diagnosis), but I've recently realized that I am indeed stupid and that has always been the reason I've struggled to keep up with the denser information.


I find that I always wonder about my level of intelligence when I am at my lowest. Especially during a long period of solitude or when I've just had to go through some failure. On the one hand, I think that these kind of thoughts are degenerate and I've found that people who delved the most vocally on them were losers. On the other hand, it can be a good base from which to get back to doing something productive from.

And then there's the whole know thyself problem. People say a lot of things about other people, but they are wrong in a lot of things also. In my opinion, if you want to know if you're smart you should compare yourself to other people and try to find argument about why you are smarter than them. If you don't, whatever conclusions you come to will be fragile and you'll be destabilized by anybody who comes up with a new definition of your person or by a new random event of life.

The whole problem is to find arguments and counter-arguments from which to judge the value of your life from. In the absolute, they are almost definitely false, but for us who are mortals, they should suffice in making you take more appropriate decisions in the future.

Most people are willing to dig into very particular and arbitrary facts of their life to find out who they are. I think this is the wrong way to work toward being more fulfilled. If you are so smart, why not use your brain to decide by yourself.