Is it the older we become the more wiser we become?
Can your three year old child or three year old grandchild still teach you about people life and the world? Is it living longer or living fuller that makes you learn from the past-that is becoming wiser? What three main traits are key from your perspective?
Wisdom is a ghost we chase around in our heads,like truth,and justice,and enlightenment...all are carrots on a string at the end of the stick of evolution;carrots placed there by chance or destiny or for the amusment of some far off deity who chuckles at the antics and play acting of the "Worm" at his feet.
"and if I say that I'm a wise man,it surely means that I don't know"-Kansas-.
Just to be sure I looked up the official definition of wisdom and, sure enough, it says,
"the quality of having experience, knowledge, and good judgment"
So I guess that part of the answer to the question is yes, you become wiser as you grow older. But there's another aspect to the idea of being wise and that's paying attention to the experiences you have, using the knowledge you've acquired, and exercising good judgment. Adults seem to have an 'override' key that they constantly use to bypass what experience has taught them, ignore the knowledge they've acquired, and leave good judgment out of an equation. While at first glance that appears to be a foolish thing to do, at second glance it's why humans are creative, innovative, and industrious. Think of all the advancements we have in technology, medicine, aeronautics, and every other of human endeavor we wouldn't have if everyone always exercised wisdom.
My answer to the second part of the question is yes, we can always learn something from children--no matter how old they are or how old we are. They see the world through eyes that we are no longer privy to so we miss some very important nuances.
Very interesting that you tie the question in with small children. I have coached, taught and raised small children. They must be taught at an early age the practice is what is required to get better at something. Two boys run a race. A coach is to pick one to be coached to be a winner. The winner has perfect form and beats the other who has terrible form by a small margin. He does this because coaching and practice will create more speed in the one with terrible form. The faster one is as fast as he will get.
Wisdom is a skill learned by those who practice to become wiser. Constant paying attention and a thirst to learn are required to become wiser. Experience is not gained by a day passing, but rather by practicing the art of life. Ten years of doing and thinking about nothing is worth only one year of trying, doing, learning, practice and contemplation.
I have known some down right ignorant and actually stupid old people. But I have also seen young people that we say are "wise beyond their years".
The concept of counting years to determine wisdom is faulty. Sure we are born with a certain amount of traits that can make us wise. But without practice, observation and contemplation we will not become more wise. Funny but schooling seems to have little impact on wisdom. Drone type work can actually impede growth toward wisdom.
The greatest tool we can have so as to become wise is the humble acceptance that we do not yet know everything.
S/he is smart. S/he is wise. Is there a difference?
Interesting quotes on wisdom by wise? persons of history:
“The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool.”
― William Shakespeare
“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.”
“The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.”
“The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.”
― Isaac Asimov
“It is better to remain silent at the risk of being thought a fool, than to talk and remove all doubt of it.”
― Maurice Switzer
No it's definitely not the older we get the wiser we get. Sure some of us can become wiser but many remain as stupid or stupider with age.
Wisdom is very different to plain cleverness. Bernie Madoff was a clever person but has no wisdom at all. Such conniving smarts are very common but lack any wisdom.
Wisdom is about sharing, compassion and of course love. Therefore a Downs Syndrome person has more wisdom than an entire building full of corporate wheelers and dealers. A small three year old child has more wisdom than a room full of politicians. Allegedly uneducated isolated indigenous people have far more wisdom than all the CEOs on the planet because the indigenous people treat the planet as a mother who is to be respected rather than a ball of rock to be exploited.
The universe exhibits wisdom by the interdependence of elements and atoms. This is actually one of the many proofs of God's existence for if the universe itself shares it's abundance so freely it is exhibiting true wisdom. Why? Wisdom is sharing, compassionate and loving.
I remember an HR discussion about whether someone had five years of experience in a job (gradually expanding skillset and growing responsibility) or one year of experience five times (doing the same thing for years but not growing, learning, advancing)
There are plenty of old people who have not learned from their mistakes and keep repeating them, whether in relationships, addiction, debt. Just because someone is older does not mean they are wiser.
However, just because someone is young does not mean they are smarter or better prepared for the world. Those coming out of college are voting yeah, socialism! while ignoring the economic mess of Venezuela and Cuba.
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