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To seek the solution to the dilemma of intellectual dependency, we need to find a person having the basic virtue of intellectual benevolence, the added trust and care of the person who is approached by us.
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There are always certain gaps in our understanding and with it comes the need of help of others to fill in the vacuum. It might be the blind spots we derive from our upbringing or our social circle, or the way misinformation manipulates or skews our thinking.
If a mentor is unambiguous and completely clear in the communication, leading to a deep understanding and clarity on the subject, they are intellectually dependable.
Many people are intellectually unreliable, and can be driven towards influencing the views of others. They think they are right, and their thoughts are superior to others, leading to a constant desire to correct the other person and make people see their worldview.
Life is about learning, and if the mentor is displaying signs about a general quality of life learnings, in a Yoda like fashion, then the person possesses the virtue of intellectual guidance.
A person who is a reliable guide or mentor tends to be faithful, transparent and honest.
An expert should ideally be genuinely interested in solving your problem, to get you towards the truth, expand your knowledge, develop your skills and deepen your understanding.
Being intellectually vain is the opposite of being transparent, and happens when the person is not concerned about your wellbeing but their own reputation, and the impression they convey.
Most mentors or guides show the following signs to help you gauge if they are intellectually dependable:
If the mentor is paying attention to the details of your views, experiences and unique traits, and then tailoring their response to fit the other person, then they are applying the appreciative quality of audience sensitivity.
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