“It is wise not to be too sure.” This is my definition of wisdom: Socrates explains:True wisdom comes to each of us when we realize how little we understand about life, ourselves, and the world around us. Wisdom is being uncertain.
This blog is an introduction to my theory of wisdom. A theory is “a system of assumptions devised for the sake of argument or investigation” (dictionary). My theory of wisdom is based on a system of four assumptions taken from my past experience and writing.
Conventional wisdom of wisdom emphasizes past experience. However, I believe “future experience” is also important. Foresight is “the perception of the significance and nature of events before they have occurred” (dictionary). Of course Foresight also involves forethought. I believe my perception, thoughts and image of the future explain and determine what my wisdom of the future will be.
I believe I have always been a reflective person, thinking about my thinking and believing. So of course, I include reflection (mental concentration) as an important factor in my current theory of wisdom. Paying attention to what I pay attention to, and don’t pay attention to, are key elements in the application of my wisdom.
This assumption was not always part of my wisdom. Now I assume everything is connected to everything else in an unbroken wholeness. Yet today I am not able to totally comprehend the wholeness, or feel capable of always applying it in my decisions. This part of my wisdom theory needs to be expanded.
This assumption is the foundation of my wisdom. It comes from my “positive uncertainty” decision making philosophy which leads to open-mindedness and makes sure I am not too sure. An open mind is receptive to new and different ideas — a requirement of learning.
My system of assumptions is not claiming or seeking “true wisdom”. It is more like a never-ending process of discovery and refinement while climbing the mountain of experience. Future blogs will describe each of these assumptions in more detail. Stay tuned…