What is Bitcoin? You don’t know and you can’t explain it!

Bitcoin is digital gold.

Bitcoin is an inflation hedge.

Bitcoin is money.

Bitcoin is a technology.

Bitcoin is software.

Bitcoin is hope.

Bitcoin is an electrical system.

Bitcoin is a heating system.

The reality is that all of them are wrong, in the sense that all of them are just a partial description of what Satoshi Nakamoto started. That second word, “is,” is where the problem is. Even though Bitcoin is all of them, if you say only one of them, you are limiting your understanding of it. The only true answer: Bitcoin is Bitcoin. We have to realize all the properties that Bitcoin has and describe it as such without putting a limit on it. Because the person who says Bitcoin is an inflation hedge has already experienced when it wasn’t. The person who said it is digital gold is suffering from the argument of lacking metallic properties. The person who says it is money will miss the whole PoW aspect of harvesting the electrical and heating energy in the real world, and so on and so on.

Every single invention or discovery in the human race was unknown at the point of the discovery. If it is unknown, how can you possibly describe it in one word or a sentence?

Until the whole of humanity assigned a word for it, the language stayed limited, and the language had to evolve around reality to describe it properly. We are still currently trying to assign words for what Bitcoin is, and they all fail at some point. Just to be clear, the descriptions failed - the reality of Bitcoin continues to be.

Even the real Bitcoin maxis that understand it on a deep level still struggle to penetrate the collective consciousness because we are trying to describe an unknown, and with the current human language that has not evolved enough. Not only has it not evolved, but even with the new terms that have been incorporated, it is a different language for outsiders.

Bitcoin’s monetary policy is governed by the difficulty adjustment, the halving schedule, and the consensus mechanism.

This sentence, although correct, is not understandable. You can’t teach someone a new language by explaining it in the new language. We have to correlate all the words one by one to the language that the person already knows. To make things worse - what happens when you are trying to explain something without language around it? The only possible solution is to observe the new thing and all its properties and experience it. When you do all that, then new words will emerge because the current ones are just insufficient.

We are not helping people by teaching them philosophy about Bitcoin. That is for the bookworms and the Bitcoin cultists like me, who have the time to do it and who like learning things this way. For all the others, that is a very unnatural way of learning. When kids are small, how do they learn before they can speak, read, or understand the language that their parents speak? Are they stupid, and the toxic maxis have to say to them, “Have fun staying poor”? I don’t think so. They learn from experiencing everything through their senses. That is a lot more learned information than the input from speaking and reading. When they enjoy the experience, they continue to do it! If they experience pain or discomfort, they stop doing it!

The beauty of Bitcoin is that there is pain for people who do not use Bitcoin, and there is significant enjoyment when you optimize your life with all the experiences that it can bring you. That is the focus of Breez and our whole team: to build the technologies that are going to give that experience to them. We will teach them through experiences, not through promises of the future.

Talk is cheap, as people say, and orange-pilling is a method that targets a tiny section of the whole population. Experiences can be for anyone, and they experience it NOW. They do not have to wait for the experience of the Number Go Up in the future; they experience the utility now. Give them the experience if you want to keep them. This achieves things in a way that the language and the problems of the description are irrelevant. You are creating a deeper understanding for every person going through the experience, and they will not go back if you solved their problem. There is a real-life example of what I am talking about.

Dale Carnegie observed reality and figured out something that nobody else did. He figured out how to use the hardest metal in a way that nobody used before. He realized that this thing would change the construction industry, and that would bring with it completely new possibilities that are impossible without it. Carnegie started to harvest the power of steel. I will leave it to you, the reader, to figure out how many analogies you can recognise with Bitcoin’s progress and how we approach everything.

Once he figured it out, he decided to make the first big application with it: a steel bridge that goes over the Mississippi River. The river was so wide, and no other material could withstand the current of the water and the load that was envisioned to be on top of it. No material other than steel. Carnegie fought hard to convince everyone to build this bridge because the enormous cost to harvest steel was much more than any other structure. Additionally, to assess the benefit of it was unknown, and the construction took much longer than anticipated. Everyone was seeing the cost only and did not want to bear it for the unknown future. Only a few, like Dale, saw the benefit and that it was worth it.

He managed somehow to finish the construction of it, but there were very few that knew and recognised this new reality. Everyone else was trying to impose their beliefs from wooden, stone, and iron structures onto steel. Nobody wanted to step foot onto the bridge because of it. It didn’t matter how Dale was trying to teach people that this is something new with new properties (dare I say “steelpill” them). People lived in the old reality, and their minds created the story justifying why the steel bridge is a fiction. In a way, that was true. It was a fiction because it was just in the mind of everyone who didn’t experience it (walk on it).

How do you make someone experience a new reality that they believe is fiction? How do you explain something (through the fiction of a language) that there is no language around? There is a biological protection in all of us that is trying to survive, and the things that are new trigger that instinct. The things we all know can be categorized as safe or dangerous. The unknown things we can’t assess because if they are dangerous, the cost is huge; if they are safe, the benefit is small. In this case, if the bridge is bad, the people walking on it can die when it collapses. If it is stable, they save time on travel costs to the other side of the river. That is a disproportionate risk-reward ratio and a very reasonable fear.

So, to make people experience this new reality (even though it was in front of them), Dale Carnegie had to be a marketer and create a fictional story to shatter their fictional beliefs about the reality of steel. They found that people believed that elephants do not walk on unstable structures, and that was a fairly popular belief among the population. So, they used that fictional belief to destroy the other fictional belief. They hired an elephant and invited all the people to see that the elephant thought that the structure was stable. When the elephant walked on the bridge and people saw it with their own eyes, their reality changed, and the fiction they were telling themselves about the bridge was shattered. Even though reality did not change before and after the elephant walk, winning the people over was by demonstrating this new reality through an event that people saw and experienced themselves. Carnegie didn’t have to explain anything anymore. The experience that they put into the minds of people was so much stronger and deeper than words.

When Dale was building the bridge, and after that, if he wanted people to use it, explaining all the properties of it was putting him in a defensive position. He had to explain why he was right. Even if he did explain why, nobody wouldn’t believe him because he was saying that everyone else was wrong. When they made the bridge and made people experience it, everyone who did NOT use it was put in the defensive position. Now the dynamics changed, and they had to explain why they didn’t walk on it. Why do you go around the river or make many back and forths with boats to transport something from one side to the other rather than simply use the bridge?

This is the way that Bitcoin will scale into the human consciousness. Not through talking to the world about something that they do not believe, but by building applications that are useful to them and strategically marketing them to shatter their old beliefs. If you are orange-pilling people, you know that that is an uphill battle, that you are on the defensive.

Let’s start building and demonstrating it to people, so they are the ones put on the defensive, why they do not use Bitcoin. Stop defending Bitcoin, and start attacking the problems that people are facing by utilizing the Bitcoin system in the solution. Stop thinking that you know Bitcoin, and start experiencing all that it can do. Do not put a limit on what it is, because you will be putting a limit on yourself, not Bitcoin.

Let’s f*cking GO!

This is a guest post by Ivan Makedonski. Opinions expressed are entirely their own and do not necessarily reflect those of BTC Inc or Bitcoin Magazine.


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