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It’s about wisdom

 
 
coberst
 
Reply Sat 5 Apr, 2008 05:35 am
How do I get ready to see life whole?

It seems to me that to see life whole I must learn a great deal more than I already have learned but I must start with where I presently am. I am convinced that learning new stuff requires three aspects (a position facing a particular direction) of mind; mentally I must have curiosity, caring, and an orderly mind.
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Type: Discussion • Score: 1 • Views: 724 • Replies: 11
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solipsister
 
  1  
Reply Sat 5 Apr, 2008 05:58 am
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Cyracuz
 
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Reply Sat 5 Apr, 2008 07:32 am
A problem....

Wisdom has little to do with knowledge.

There might be a man in a forgotten tribe in some deep jungle who doesn't know about atoms and mathematics, philosophy, or any of the things associated with "civilized" living.

Then there might be a man in New York, educated in science and philosophy and with a great knowledge of all things and ready access to news from all over the world.

Now, of the two, the man in the jungle could just as easily be considered the wiser. It is not knowledge based.

And knowledge of history is not required to "see life whole" as you put it.

A man who is considered wise isn't the same as a man considered knowledgable.

One who strives for knowledge may never achieve wisdom, and similarly, a man of wisdom may well be one with very little knowledge, relative to other people.

Wisdom has to do with the purity of one's motives. With the ability to percieve without the restrictions of anticipation and expectation

So all in all, cob, I think you're mixing in a lot of factors that do not belong in the equation of wisdom.

A trained doctor may know a lot more about a heart attack than average truckdriving Joe. But when Joe suddenly suffers a heart attack, he has an experience which is quite beyond the doctor to fully comprehend regardless of his extensive education.

The doc may know what the signs are for a heart attack, and how to counter them to save the person's life.
Joe, on the other hand, knows what it is to have a heart attack. He has felt it, he has been it.
All the doctor's knowledge comes from Joe and people like him.
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JLNobody
 
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Reply Sat 5 Apr, 2008 01:44 pm
Cryacuz, a wise post, if you ask me.

One anthropologist wrote somewhere that we can show some "primitives" our progress in material things: watches, cars, phones, etc. and thus demonstrate to him how far our society has progressed in knowledge and technology. At the same time we may observe that the primitives and we "advanced" moderns are still discussing the same unresolved problems of the nature of virtue, values, the meaning of life and death, etc.
In other words, in matters of "wisdom" progress is very problematical. As far as I can see it is less a property of cultures than of the psychic behavior of individuals. And, such wisdom has more to do with values, understanding the nature of values, and the nutritional value of one's perspective than about knowledge per se. Otherwise the American TV program, Jeapordy, is more significant than I think it is.
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Cyracuz
 
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Reply Mon 7 Apr, 2008 01:47 pm
Yes, the questions that we have no answers to...

In a way, wisdom has to do with those. Not so much what we do know, but how we handle life with all the things we don't know.

Wisdom then is not the absence of ignorance, but more a measure of how we conduct our affairs in the face of it.
Someone who does this well, that is, with a good outcome, is considered wise, while one who doesn't master this so well is considered less wise.
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JLNobody
 
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Reply Mon 7 Apr, 2008 03:24 pm
Cyracuz: " In a way, wisdom has to do with...[not} so much what we do know, but how we handle life with all the things we don't know. "

That rings true for me.
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Cyracuz
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 10:55 am
Thanks JL Smile


But another thing I've been thinking about when it comes to wisdom...

Is it an ability akin to intellect, or is it more of an emotional thing?

Does wisdom come from the rational and logical mind, the "me" mind, or does it come from the proverbial heart, the part of the "me" that, through empathy and emotional responses, is one with the world around it?
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Shapeless
 
  1  
Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 11:02 am
Cyracuz wrote:
Does wisdom come from the rational and logical mind, the "me" mind, or does it come from the proverbial heart, the part of the "me" that, through empathy and emotional responses, is one with the world around it?


In my opinion, it comes from not automatically polarizing the two. There are situations when mind and heart are in conflict, but a wise person will take these on a case-by-case basis rather than preemptively casting his/her lot with just one as a matter of principle.
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JLNobody
 
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Reply Wed 9 Apr, 2008 03:20 pm
Shapeless, I agree that it is "unwise" to side with only one side of such an issue. The buddhist's "middle way" seems more realistic to me. I also agree with the concreteness of your point that we operate on a "case-by-case" basis--also a very buddhist strategy based on their perception of the particularity of all situations, things, and events.
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Cyracuz
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Apr, 2008 06:48 am
Interesting.

Wisdom is conflict, in a sense.

When I walk into the woods, the part of me that knows "the particularity of all situations, things and events" automatically categorizes and organizes what i experience.
I see trees with trunks, branches and leaves. I see fowers, grass and the soil. Streams and still water, and the creatures moving about. I see all things as separate and meaningful in their own right. I like to call this the "thinking self".

Simultaneously, when I walk into the woods, the part of me that knows the unity of all things does the exact oposite of the thinking self. It doesn't see things as separate and meaningful in their own right. It percieves the whole, the unbroken continuity of all things within this forest, and meaning comes from this unity, not from any single component of it. This I like to call the "feeling self" or the "experiencing self".

So at all times we are aware of it, of both the particularity and the oneness of all things. Both have meaning to us. But only when they are unified within our consciousness.
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JLNobody
 
  1  
Reply Sat 12 Apr, 2008 02:42 pm
That's wonderful! Samsara = Nirvana.
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Cyracuz
 
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Reply Tue 15 Apr, 2008 07:24 pm
Yea, in a way.

Both aspects of existence are known to us at all times.

So if wisdom is the measure for how "enlightened" we are, a buddha is one who has mastered the balance between them to such a degree that it isn't a painful or contradictory experience.

Or at least, that's what I'm thinking right now :wink:
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