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03 Jun 2013
Grok and other excellent words

Once in a while a new word enters my lexicon and fits perfectly with so many concepts that have been desperately lacking a unifying banner.

Grok is my new favourite word:

To grok /ˈɡrɒk/ is to intimately and completely share the same reality or line of thinking with another physical or conceptual entity. Author Robert A. Heinlein coined the term in his best-selling 1961 book Stranger in a Strange Land. In Heinlein’s view, grokking is the intermingling of intelligence that necessarily affects both the observer and the observed.

Grok means to understand so thoroughly that the observer becomes a part of the observed—to merge, blend, intermarry, lose identity in group experience. It means almost everything that we mean by religion, philosophy, and science—and it means as little to us (because of our Earthling assumptions) as color means to a blind man.1

Courtesy of my friends here are some more. Some sound good, some encapsulate interesting concepts, some shouldn’t exist.


  1. (of a word) Polysyllabic; long: “sesquipedalian surnames”.
  2. Characterized by long words; long-winded. A much more fun definition can be found on Wikipedia. Sesquipedalianism is a linguistic style that involves the use of long words. It might be characterised as polysyllabic holophrastic verbalism.

Need to insult someone but would prefer them to check a dictionary before they’re offended?


Not to be confused with Milk toast. Milquetoast is an American English dysphemism for a weak, timid, or bland person.

  1. Wikipedia: Grok 

  2. Wikipedia: Sesquwhatever 

  3. Wikipedia: Milk toast “Not to be confused with Milk toast.” Thanks, Wikipedia. 

Domo aregardos,
J at 13:11


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