Four Assumptions

“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.

Foresight Assumption:

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.

Reflection Assumption:

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.

Interconnected Assumption:

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.

Open-Minded Assumption:

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…








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4 Responses to H B’s THEORY OF WISDOM

  1. Gene Unger says:

    Beautiful writing. What kind of boat are you writing from? A Battle Ship on a calm sea? A Cruz Ship on a beautiful tropical sea? A Row Boat on a stormy sea? Is your destination known? Or ? , open and unknown ? Having fun in Tennessee! Open to what comes next. Gene Sent from my iPad I


  2. John Krumboltz says:

    I have another assumption: Everything depends on what I DO. My actions are what counts. John

    • hbgelatt says:

      Thanks John for the reply. I almost agree with you. I believe almost everything depends on what I do. I will act as if what I do makes a difference.

      H B

  3. mclark3366@comcast.net says:

    Another good blog.  I understand your encouragement of being open-minded.  I do think the wise person does this but also uses her past knowledge and experience to apply to new information one gets. 

    We have our California tickets for July 1 through July 29.  When will the Wisdom group meet in July?  And are you around the first part so we can get together?  So we can exchange our “wisdom” 🙂


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