Being a wise guy

Bird Droppings January 5, 2011
Being a wise guy

“Wisdom is like electricity. There is no permanently wise man, but men capable of wisdom, who, being put into certain company, or other favorable conditions, become wise for a short time, as glasses rubbed acquire electric power for a while.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

I found this concept of temporary wisdom fascinating being one who thought as we age we grow in wisdom. It is interesting too that we perceive wisdom in different manors. Emerson sees wisdom as changing, possibly even daily as we are capable of wisdom but circumstances will prevail and wisdom can be fleeting.

“Wisdom is knowing when to speak your mind and when to mind your speech.” Evangel

Timing so often affects when and where and who, a few days ago speaking with a student I made the comment that teachers and students should be symbiotic and there are many times the “teacher” is the student. Some teachers do not understand this concept of a teacher being a student. Emerson’s student and friend Thoreau knew the idea well leaving teaching to become student.

“Where there is charity and wisdom, there is neither fear nor ignorance. Where there is patience and humility, there is neither anger nor vexation. Where there is poverty and joy, there is neither greed nor avarice. Where there is peace and meditation, there is neither anxiety nor doubt.” St. Francis of Assisi

Many years ago I watched a movie about this man who gave up a life of luxury to be a monk and live in poverty to help others. It was for him the relationship of wisdom that was a replacement for ignorance and filling of a vacuum of ignorance with wisdom.

“A wise man never knows all, only fools know everything” African Proverb

A wise man knows that he or she doesn’t know and a man who is ignorant thinks that they know everything. Several years ago I saw a skit using a card board box, a person stood in the box and because of ignorance did not leave it. The world went on around outside the box yet the person was so confined they could not leave or see what was going on. I have found that so many people confine themselves to the box limited ignorant and confined.

“The only man I know who behaves sensibly is my tailor; he takes my measurements anew each time he sees me. The rest go on with their old measurements and expect me to fit them.” George Bernard Shaw

We so easily limit ourselves to that comfort zone and then want everyone else to conform whether they want to or not. The old thought of you are going to do it this way or else, fitting a square peg in a round hole, only works if the hammer is big enough and the force driving it strong enough but there will be a pile of splinters and debris when it is over. Boy does this sound like a school or a job or the government or life in general.

“If you wish to know the road up the mountain, ask the man who goes back and forth on it.” Zenrin

I was thinking as I read this of the Sherpa’s in Nepal who help climbers go up mountains years ago you would read about the climbers but the Sherpa who pulled him to the top was never mentioned. Today the man Tensing Norgay is mentioned whenever Everest is spoken of all with Sir Edmund Hillary, first man to the summit and his Sherpa are famous even in advertising in the US.

“A man is the sum of his actions, of what he has done, of what he can do, nothing else.” Mahatma Gandhi

We can speak of wisdom but in effect it is still what is visible that many people will respond too. Gandhi also said.

“We must become the change we want to see.”

I find so often that eventually people listen when words and language are spoken enough, it does sink in. The FIDO principal does work Frequency, Intensity, Duration, and Over Again. Words are such powerful tools when wielded in a manner that people can see and hear and understand.

“When you are right you cannot be too radical; when you are wrong, you cannot be too conservative.” Martin Luther King Jr.

It is morning and we have a glorious day ahead chances to meet people to teach to care about to love and be loved. A new day a time to try and make a difference Gandhi said “we must become the change we want to see” and King “you can not be too radical when you are right” step up and forward, change can occur people do want to see and step out of their boxes it only takes someone to show them time and time again.

“Limitations live only in our minds. But if we use our imaginations, our possibilities become limitless.” Jamie Paolinetti

As I watch and observe people each day as I move through this reality I see people limit themselves be it in a box or out. Much like a period, ending a sentence so many people have an end point. Several months ago in a message in my excitement to tell of an event I wrote a paragraph literally with no punctuation. Actually I do that quite often but in effect there are times for a stopping point but not an end. Perception comes into play and what can be an end may be another’s resting point.

“Return to the root and you will find the meaning.” Sengstan

“We can chart our future clearly and wisely only when we know the path which has led to the present.” Adlai E. Stevenson

Last night I made a comment to a friend of myself being in the place I am to be right now. An interesting exercise is drawing a line on a piece of paper and plotting the events to where you are. What directions and paths might you have taken with a slightly different choice at anyone of the points on your line?

“When a man begins to understand himself he begins to live. When he begins to live he begins to understand his fellow men.” Norvin McGranahan

We so often try and see others and avoid our own retrospection, we refuse to see ourselves yet find the flaws in others find the differences so easily. Too often we need a mirror first before a microscope.

“If one does not understand a person, one tends to regard him as a fool.” Carl Jung

Each day we see and hear from numerous people, do you, do we take the time to understand where the sights and sounds are truly coming from. It is so much easier to simply cast aside the person, to leave them by the wayside so to say, trash for pickup, than to try and understand where that person is coming from and why.

“To know someone here or there with whom you can feel there is understanding in spite of distances or thoughts expressed — That can make life a garden.” Johann Wolfgang Von Geothe

“The noblest pleasure is the joy of understanding.” Leonardo Da Vinci

So many years ago this great thinker and artist looked at man different than so many before him, he analyzed and pondered and drew and painted and thought more and in his work and unraveled the human condition. A simple portrait of a woman has become one of the most famous of all paintings “The Mona Lisa”.

“Yearn to understand first and to be understood second.” Beca Lewis Allen

“Nobody knows what a boy is worth. We’ll have to wait and see. But every man in a noble place a boy once used to be.” Source Unknown

“The depth of darkness to which you can descend and still live is an exact measure of the height to which you can aspire to reach.” Laurens Von der Post

Laurens Von der Post discovered a people in reference to his life long involvement with The African Bushmen or Sans, who were once thought of as untamable and despicable, were very much human and their culture and society were in effect more intricate and interwoven with the realities of life than our civilized world could comprehend. We were the untamable we were truly uncivilized we were the ones who needed to understand and perhaps truly seek wisdom lost so long ago in our efforts of civilizing. Please keep all in harms way on your mind and in your thoughts.

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