The great undoing, called, 'I know'!
UNLEARNING,the human equivalent of Computer formatting!
Life is a never ending process of learning unless one refuses to learn and is repugnant to the basic human instinct about learning. My experience says, this repugnance too is all pervading that plagues certain segments . Especially legal segment is one but is not without exceptions. I have a couple of examples of exception. We had a hard working sub judge while the world was celebrating the turn of the century. He graced the court room just opposite the DBA. I was conducting a complicated civil matter in that court. After a few sessions of arguments at length, the P.O asked me to pause for a while. I complied. He told me in open court in presence of the other side that he had a long innings doing criminal matters, so much so that he could scan a record without detailed perusal but he was weak on the civil side. He clarified that even though he was technically weak, his strength lay in his discerning sense. You can not take me for a ride. He said he knew what and how to elicit what so as to distinguish logic from sophistry. He asked me to be transparent as regards legal provisions I banked upon in applying it to my facts.
The case was decided in more optimum manner than I could have imagined, in that if I had got my full relief, my interest elsewhere would have suffered. If I was refused wholly, I would have been in disarray. What was adjudicated was neither. It was आधा तीतर आधा बटेर, neither side sought nor could have sought. It was exactly that adjudication which delivered best justice in that exact manner as would have contained even a Shylock.
A couple of years later, I happened to meet the judge in a function at Patna close to which he had his posting. I told him about his feat, wondering how could he say he was weak on the civil side.
His reply is the moral of the anecdote.
He said, he was still weak on the civil side but was equally strong in the art of unlearning. He explained, the greatest weakness of a civil practitioner including a judge was that he thought 'he knew'. The audacity which the term ,'I know', carries, is a forbidding factor, that takes away one's inbuilt instinct of learning with an open mind.
And you can't have an open mind unless you have mastered one little known craft. That's the craft of 'unlearning'.
18 years have rolled by, making most of us computer savvy. And most of us know what formatting means with respect to a computer system. Once your computer program turns irreparable , you may learn what formatting means , else your system turns into an idiot box , good for nothing. That's exactly what happens to our mind, once formatting is necessitated . In human condition, unlearning is the synonym for the computer language, called 'formatting'.