Tuesday 9 February 2010

It's all a matter of PEERception

For the more familiar readers I can suffice by saying that once again I was inspired by You-Know-Who, while commenting on a blog post. It wasn't a typo, but suddenly it jumped to my mind that it's all a matter of peerception

Media and trust, it's always been a moving target. Our correspondent in... used to be someone we sent overseas months, maybe even years ago to provide us with information (talking centuries and decades ago here, they didn't have Twitter yet...). Whatever he or she said to us would be the absolute truth, usually prevailing even over what the place or country itself would consider news fit to bring forth

Why? Where does this blind trust come from? Based upon a silent standard of agreements grown into our system long ago, it seems. In my On The Acquisition Of Knowledge 1/2 I stress the fact that we are
extremely people-oriented when it comes to believing the thruth

We look at our peers, and only at our peers. The rebellious among us might challenge that notion and even discard it, but as a rule, we look at our peers. Whatever they say becomes our truth

Who are our peers? There are people who call almost everyone their friend, there are people who say they don't have friends, or maybe only one or two. Some iconise their teacher, some praise their preacher, others worship their guru

Who are our peers? Who is likely to be be iconised? Back in October 2009 I made a wild prediction about the amount of followers Tim Berners-Lee would get within the next days and even hours. Boy did I get excited! And boy was I wrong. Not just a bit wrong, but really very utterly wrong
Which showed me that it's really hard to predict peerability, if that's a word (making them up as we go here)

I promised to do some hatching on answering those questions, I find them very interesting. One thing I know for sure: there are some rules, and some exceptions - as always. And it's the perception that counts - as always - as well as the peer:

Today's general perception of Jesus, although changing, is very different from the probably ordinary yet enlightened man he really was. But that icon is still being used by the Catholic Church to undo his work

I wonder what this statement, coming from me, does to you...

5 reacties:

Patrick Brinksma said...

Before commenting any futher, I want to know the following: Is the essence of your post that we value the content of a message (in it's most broad meaning) by the messenger (peer)? And indeed if our perception of that messenger changes, we value the content different?

Martijn Linssen said...

Yes, exactly. Spot-on. The content can pretty much change 180 degrees (oops I might be a little bit exaggerating there) without too much consequences, but once the perception of the messenger changes, everything changes even faster

I might add that if you don't mind!

Patrick Brinksma said...

Just something that popped up: The words of Jesus were said in the context of the time and space he lived in. They were not meant for us living in the current time and space.
This also applies to the Bible, a book who was initially received and interpreted by someone in alignment with his Inner Being. It is amazing how we humans have hold on to that book, creating interpretation over interpretation.

Martijn Linssen said...

Yes, you're right, and you prove my point too

The words of Jesus still hold up, but you'd have to read them in their untarnished form: the Gospel of Thomas (http://www.gnosis.org/naghamm/gosthom.html) is a perfect example of how he was an enlightened man, asking nasty questions like Socrates had 500 years before, and rejecting pharisees, sabbath, fasting, praying and other "lies" as he dubbed some of them

Logion 3: Jesus said, "If your leaders say to you, 'Look, the (Father's) kingdom is in the sky,' then the birds of the sky will precede you. If they say to you, 'It is in the sea,' then the fish will precede you. Rather, the (Father's) kingdom is within you and it is outside you

That still survives in Luke 17:21 (http://bible.cc/luke/17-21.htm) and, as you see, there is growing conservatism trying to "close that gap" over the last 10+ years

Having said that, you do prove my point: people largely listen to the Church in order to understand Jesus' words. You form an exception, and think for yourself. As do others, in growing numbers - fortunately, but that's still not changing the rule

Patrick Brinksma said...

Rules change when the coin flips sides. :).
We live in a time of awakening. And with that I remember something I tweeted: "The more individual we become, the more we become one." (http://twitter.com/patrickbrinksma/statuses/8849485905). With regards to the rule, it will change. One day we will be selfish enough.

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