obsolete: to give material form to
2 (a): to give character or essence to; (b): to be the characteristic quality of: animate
obsolete: guide, direct
obsolete: to make known
5: to communicate knowledge to



Inform (v.): early 14th century, “to train or instruct in some specific subject,” from Old French informerenformer “instruct, teach” (13th century) and directly from Latin informare “to shape, give form to, delineate,” figuratively “train, instruct, educate,” from in- “into” + formare “to form, shape,” from forma “form.”  In early use also enform until c. 1600.  Sense of “report facts or news, communicate information to” first recorded late 14th century.




Information is not knowledge.

Albert Einstein (1879-1955, undoubtedly most influential figures of the modern era, physicist, ardent humanist, committed Jew and advocate for the moral role of the Jewish people)

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“Knowledge is of two kinds. We know a subject ourselves, or we know where we can find information on it.” 

Samuel Johnson (1709—1784, English critic, biographer, essayist, poet, and lexicographer, regarded as one of the greatest figures of 18th-century life and letters)

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“Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge?
Where is the knowledge we have lost in information?” 

T.S. Eliot (Thomas Stearns Eliot, 1888-1965, writer and groundbreaking 20th-century poet, known for his work, "Waste Land")

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“Everybody gets so much information all day long that they lose their common sense. They listen so much that they forget to be natural. This is a nice story.”

Gertrude Stein (1874-1946, American writer, playwright, poet, art collector, and a central figure in the Parisian art world)

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“I was brought up to believe that the only thing worth doing was to add to the sum of accurate information in the world.” 

Margaret Mead (1901—1978, American anthropologist whose great fame owed as much to the force of her personality and her outspokenness as it did to the quality of her scientific work)

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“You are trying to lure us into revealing information you're not entitled to? With chocolate and wine? Are you amateurs?” 

Moira J. Moore (writer of mostly fantasy books, best known for her Heroes series and "Heroes at Odds")

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“Librarians are essential players in the information revolution because they level that field. They enable those without money or education to read and learn the same things as the billionaire and the PhD.” 

Marilyn Johnson  (b. 1954, American writer and the author of the nonfiction books like, "Lives in Ruins: Archaeologists and the Seductive Lure of Human Rubble " and "This Book is Overdue: How Librarians and Cybrarians Can Save Us All")

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“I was brought up to believe that the only thing worth doing was to add to the sum of accurate information in the world.”

Margaret Mead


One of the most difficult occupations I possessed was as a prospect researcher in the fundraising field.  It was so challenging on so many levels, because it largely took a lot of discipline to glean pertinent and accurate information largely from public and credible news sources.  It was important to work in excellence, integrity, and from a moral and ethical center.  It also took a great deal of work to synthesize the information and present the information well so my clients, who were largely on the run, could discern the information and connect the dots for themselves, especially as they were gathering information in real-time on their donor visits.

When I worked for a prestigious nonprofit I compiled huge comprehensive briefs for the president of that organization.  The president was political astute, well-read and very knowledgeable.  He read several papers each morning, quickly adding to the knowledge that already existed in his head.   If I made any mistakes the whole brief was thrown out.  It also didn’t help that I had two directors whispering in his ears and downgrading the quality of my work.  It was a super stressful position, and sometimes I instructed to train others to do what I did, because no one knew exactly how I did.

By design, I was being pushed to focus on not making mistakes, which push me to make more mistakes.

Sooner or later, I had to throw up my hands and surrender to what is instead of fighting the way I wanted my job to be.  Essentially, I had to stop playing the victim and instead be a powerful co-creator of my circumstances.  I had to talk to myself a lot during that time.  Quickly I had a epiphany of sorts.  I thought, “Okay, if I am that bad, come fire me.”  I let go and when I did, it was very empowering.  I could feel others around me could sense it too, and eventually left me alone to do my work, and that’s when I did so in excellence.

Sooner or later, the saboteurs moved on to other organizations and projects, or they were let go for one reason or another.  Once my work was vindicated, I moved onto better paying positions.

Sojourners, let us stay connected in and strive to be well-informed of all the good we are capable of being and doing.

Faithfully Yours, Tonya





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