If he knows, but knows not he knows, he is asleep. Awaken him (Part of an Chinese/Persian? proverb)

By what word can we call him using one or two words? A sleeper? An unaware person ? Incognizant? or what?

closed as off-topic by Scott, user140086, NVZ, Phil Sweet, FumbleFingers Jun 29 '16 at 16:24

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  • 1
    But if he's aware about his lack of awareness, isn't he aware then? That makes me think, I have to re-watch Inception soon enough. – MadWard Jun 28 '16 at 12:04
  • Like.... I wanted a loan from a bank, the banks refuse without a guarantee. Someone said .."you have this land or house why not pledge it?" I know such possibilities exist but somehow someone else had to tell me or remind me that! – Narasimham Jun 28 '16 at 12:11
  • You want the name of this person? John? – Drew Jun 28 '16 at 14:55
  • How about Sheldon? – David Garner Jun 28 '16 at 15:38

Is it just me, or does that sentence mean the opposite of what you're saying it does?

The sentence sounds like the person is aware or able, but doesn't know that they're aware or able.

Think of the Cowardly Lion in the Wizard of Oz: he had the courage inside him the whole time!

What you call this person depends on the exact context. Any of the words you mentioned might fit.

You might also say the person is suffering from impostor syndrome:

Impostor syndrome (also known as impostor phenomenon or fraud syndrome) is a term coined in 1978 by clinical psychologists Dr. Pauline R. Clance and Suzanne A. Imes referring to high-achieving individuals marked by an inability to internalize their accomplishments and a persistent fear of being exposed as a "fraud". Despite external evidence of their competence, those exhibiting the syndrome remain convinced that they are frauds and do not deserve the success they have achieved. Proof of success is dismissed as luck, timing, or as a result of deceiving others into thinking they are more intelligent and competent than they believe themselves to be.

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