SCHOLAR ISLAND

Wisdom

 

 

"The only medicine for suffering, crime, and all the other woes of mankind, is wisdom."

Thomas Henry Huxley

 

 

"Mankind will never see an end of trouble until....lovers of Wisdom come to hold Political Power, or the holders of Power....become lovers of Wisdom."

-Plato

 

 

"Knowledge is a function of intellect while wisdom is a function of being."

-D. Trinidad Hunt

 

 

"To know that which before us lies in daily life is the prime wisdom."

-John Milton (1608-1674)

 

"The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their right names."

-Chinese proverb

 

"Wisdom is knowing what to do next. Virtue is doing it."

-David Starr Jordan

 

"Nobody knows  where the human race is going. The highest wisdom, then, is to know where you are going."

-Leo Tolstoy

 

"Knowing others is intelligence;

knowing yourself is true wisdom.

Mastering others is strength

mastering yourself is true power."

Tao Te ching
 

 

"Fill your bowl to the brim

and it will spill.

Keep sharpening your knife

and it will blunt.

Chase after money and security

and your heart will never unclench.

Care about people's approval

and you will be their prisoner.

Do your work, then step back.

The only path to serenity."

-Tao Te Ching

 

"Wise men don't need to prove their point;

men who need to prove their point aren't wise."

-Tao Te ching

 

"If you look to others for fulfillment,

you will never be truly fulfilled.

If your happiness depends on money,

you will never be happy with yourself.

 

Be content with what you have;

rejoice in the way things are.

When you realize there is nothing lacking,

The whole world belongs to you."
 

Tao Te ching

 


 

 

 

"Cleverness is not wisdom."

-Euripides

 

"All human wisdom is summed up in two words, wait and hope."

-Alexander Dumas

 

"Those who are dedicated to a life of wisdom understand that the impulse to blame something or someone is foolishness, that there is nothing to be gained in blaming, whether it be others or oneself."

-Epictetus

 

"He is wise who doesn't grieve for the thing he doesn't have, but rejoices for the things he does have."

-Epictetus

 

 

"There is....only one way to wisdom: awe. Forfeit your sense of awe, let your conceit diminish your ability to revere, and the universe becomes a market place for you. The loss of awe is the great block  to insight."

Herschel

 

 

"We can be knowledgeable with other men's knowledge

but we cannot be wise with other men's wisdom."

-Michel de Montaigne, essayist (1533-1592)

 

 

"What is all wisdom save a collection of platitudes. Take fifty of our current proverbial sayings-they are so trite, so threadbare.....None the less they embody the concentrated experience of the race, and the man who orders his life according to their teachings cannot go far wrong....has any man ever attained to inner harmony by pondering the experience of others? Not since the world began! He must pass through fire."

-Norman Douglas

 

"The aim of higher education is wisdom. Wisdom is knowledge of principles and causes. Metaphysics deals with the highest principles and causes. Therefore metaphysics is the highest wisdom."

Robert Hutchins

 

"To profit from good advice requires more wisdom than to give it."

-Churton Collins

 

"Great men are not always wise."

-Job 32:9

 

"Among mortals second thoughts are wisest."

-Euripides

 

 

"Now that is the wisdom of man, in every instance of his labor, to hitch his wagon to a star, and see his chore done by the gods themselves."

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

"Wisdom is equilibrium."

-Jonas Salk

 

"Commonsense in an uncommon degree is what the world calls wisdom."

-Coleridge

 

"Wisdom is knowing in depth the great metaphors of meaning."

-C.G. Jung

 

 

"Education is not the filling of a pail but the lighting of a fire. Of such is wisdom."

-William Butler Yeats (1865-1939)

 

"Where is the wisdom we have lost in knowledge?

Where is the knowledge we have lost in information.?"

-T.S. Eliot

 

 

"It is more easy to be wise for others than for ourselves."

-La Rochefoucauld

 

 

"Be Wiser Than other people, if you can; but do not tell them so."

-Lord Chesterfield

 

 

"The next best thing to being wise oneself is to live in a circle of those who are."

-C.S. Lewis (1898-1963)

"

 

"The whole of wisdom is contained in two Biblical statements: 'I am that I am' and 'Be still and know that I am God."

Ramana Maharishi

 

 

"Wisdom is simply this: to do the next thing that has to be done, to do it with all your heart, and to take delight in doing it."

-Meister Eckhardt

 

"The simple things

are also the most extraordinary things,

  and only the wise can see them."

-Paulo Coelho

The Alchemist

 

"Good people are good because they've come to wisdom through failure."

-William Saroyan

 

 

"Wisdom is found only in truth."

-Johann von Goethe (1749-1832)

 

"The greatest wisdom often consists in ignorance."

-Baltasar Gracian

 

"Sometimes it proves the highest understanding not to understand."

-Baltasar Gracian

 

"Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Understanding is not enough; we must do. Knowing and understanding in action make for honor. And honor is the heart of wisdom."

-Johann von Goethe (1749-1832)

 

"Wisdom is the right use of knowledge. To know is not to be wise. Many men know a great deal, are all the greater fools for it.....But to know how to use knowledge is to have wisdom."

-Charles Haddon Spurgeon

 

"Growth in wisdom may be exactly measured by decrease in bitterness."

Freidrich Nietzsche

 

"To be genuinely wise, one must make haste slowly."

-Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790)

 

 

"A prudent question is one-half of Wisdom"

-Francis Bacon (1561-1626)

 

"It is a profitable thing, if one is wise, to seem foolish."

-Aeschylus

 

 

 

"The wise man is desirous of peace and leisure, that he may have time for meditation on heavenly things."

Philo of Alexandria

 

 

"The wise man is a sojourner and a settler, having come as an emigrant from a life of confusion and disorder to one suitable to peaceful and happy men."

Philo of Alexandria

 

 

"I believe that all Wisdom consists in caring immensely for a few right things, and not caring a straw about the rest."

John Buchan

 

"What is wisdom?Ö.I have often wondered, and I am not sure. Understanding of life and men, I presume. It goes beyond mere knowledge, as knowledge goes beyond information."

Louis LíAmour

Last of the Breed

 

"To be a philosopher is not merely to have subtle thoughts....but to love Wisdom as to live accordingly to its dictates, a life of simplicity, independence, magnanimity and trust."

Thoreau

 

"The only wisdom we can hope to acquire is the wisdom of humility. Humility is endless."

-T.S. Eliot

 

"The only medicine for suffering, crime, and all the other woes of mankind, is wisdom."

Thomas Henry Huxley

 

"To work very hard like dogs and hogs for sense gratification is not the proper ambition of human life; human life is meant for a little austerity. We have to purify our existence; that is the mission of human life. Why should we purify our existence? Because then we will get spiritual realization, the unlimited, endless pleasure and happiness. That is real pleasure, real happiness."

-A.C. Bhaktivedanta Swami

 

"Phronesis" or 'practical wisdom' 

 

"The wind in a manís face makes him wise."

John Ray

 

"Be at War with your Vices, at Peace with your Neighbors, and let every New-Year find you a better Man."

-Ben Franklin

 

"Wisdom begins where the fear of God ends."

-Andre Gide

 

"Wisdom is not just knowing fundamental truths, if these are unconnected with the guidance of life or with a perspective on its meaning. If the deep truths physicists describe about the origin and functioning of the universe have little practical import and do not change our picture of the meaning of the universe and our place within it, then knowing them would not count as wisdom."

-Robert Nozzick

 

1. Does not Wisdom call, and understanding raise HER voice?

8. Sincere are all the words of my mouth, not one of them is wily or crooked;

9. All of them are plain to the man of intelligence, and right to those who attain knowledge.

15. By me Kings reign, and lawgivers establish justice;

16. By me princes govern, and nobles; and all the rulers of the earth.

17. Those who love me I also love, and those who seek me find me.

18. With me are riches and honor, enduring wealth and prosperity.

Proverbs Chapter 8

 

"Wisdom introducing herselfÖ(So now, O children, listen to me; instruction and wisdom do not reject! Happy the man who obeys me, and happy those who keep my ways, Happy the man watching daily at my gates, waiting at my door posts; For he who finds me finds life, and WINS FAVOR FROM THE LORD:; BUT HE WHO MISSES ME HARMS HIMSELF; ALL WHO HATE ME LOVE DEATH.)

Proverbs Chapter 9-12

"For wisdom is more mobile than any motion; because of her pureness she pervades and penetrates all things. For she is a breath of the power of God, and a pure emanation of the glory of the Almighty; therefore nothing defiled gains entrance into her. For she is a reflection of eternal light, a spotless mirror of the working of God, an image of goodness. Although she is but one, she can do all things, and while remaining in herself, she renews all things; in every generation she passes into holy souls and makes them friends of God and prophets. For God loves nothing so much as the person who lives with wisdom. She is more beautiful than the sun and excels every constellation of the stars. Compared with the light she is found to be superior, for it is succeeded by the night, but against wisdom evil does not prevail."

Wisdom 7.24-30

 

"Happy is the man that findeth wisdom, and the man that getteth understanding.

For the merchandise of it is better than the merchandise of silver, and the gain thereof than fine gold.

She is more precious than rubies: and all things thou

canst desire are not to be compared unto her.

Length of days is in her right hand; and in her left hand riches and honour.

Her ways are ways of pleasantness, and all her paths are peace.

She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her, and happy is every one that retaineth her.

The Lord by wisdom hath founded the earth; by understanding hath he established the heavens."

-Proverbs 3:13-19

 

Book: "Masters of Wisdom" by J.Bennett

 

Who is Sophia? What is she?-The relationship between God and Sophia has never been entirely clear. She asks to be called a 'sister' (Prov. 7:4), a term which bizarrely can be used in the Bible to denote sister, wife or lover; she is described as the perfect wife (Prov. 31: 10), God's helper (Prov. 3:19) and more worthy of desire than precious jewels (Prov. 8:11) in the book of Proverbs Sophia reveals that God 'possessed her' and compares herself 'as one brought up with him,.' implying a simultaneous relationship of mistress and sister. She says:

God possessed me when his purpose first unfolded. I was set up from everlasting, from the beginning, before the earth came into being. When there were no depths I was brought forth; before the mountains were settled, before the hills I was born. When he prepared the heavens I was there. When he established the clouds above, when he strengthened the fountains of the deep. When he assigned the boundaries of the sea, when he laid the foundations of the earth, I was by his side, the master craftsman, as one brought up with him. And I was his daily delight rejoicing always before him. (Prov. 8:22-31)

Did God create her, then, or did she come into being with God at the same time?

   There seem to be a hundred answers to this. Once she claimed to have 'issued forth from the mouth of the Most High and covered the earth like a mist.' (Sir, 24:3). Coming forth from someone's mouth suggests gestation and birth, however irregular. Was Sophia God's daughter then? The apocryphal Wisdom of Solomon describes her as a filial puff from the divine lungs:

For she is the breath of the power of God, and a pure influence flowing from the glory of the Almighty: therefore can no defiled thing fall into her. For she is the brightness of the everlasting light, the unspotted mirror of the power of God, and the image of his goodness. (Wisd. of Sol. 7:25-6)

Alexander Waugh

GOD

 

 

"....When we open ourselves to source energy, we connect with cellular wisdom, for source energy is our link to the creative energies of the universe. We humans are an aggregate of vibrantly alive cells. We thrive, as have cells for billions of years, when our actions and interactions are aligned with the energy that animates and sustains our cells.

   What does an experience of cellular wisdom feel like? Its most vivid and dramatic manifestation occurs in times of transition and change. Think back to a time in your life when the existing order broke down, and an unknown future was gestating. Maybe it was a time when you changed careers, separated from a partner, or lost a child or a parent. Suddenly, life was different, marked by a different texture, different emotions, a different way of thinking. A special energy, which we recognize as part of our deepest self, characterizes these times. it is the energy of the Void, the energy that powers all creation, the energy that resonates within our cells at every moment. It may make us light=headed or giddy. we may laugh or cry more easily. We may feel a hollowness at the pit of our stomach, a clutching sensation in our chest. These are physiological expressions of the void that marks the impending emergence of a new dimension of life. In the energy vortex of the void, we may feel lost. In a way, we are lost-to an old way of being.

   Yet out of this void, something new is being born. A new reality is unfolding from the field of possibility, perhaps accompanied by a sense of loss; perhaps, by a sense of wonder. At moments of transition, the vortex of creative energy that is our life force is activated/ its waves carry the blue-print that informs every new aspect of our lives. If we surrender to the vortex of energy, Cellular Wisdom will direct us on a path that leads to emerging new dimensions of our lives, for the energy of all new creation is Cellular Wisdom in action. "

=Joan C. King

The Code of Authentic Living: Cellular wisdom

 

"A prudent question is one-half of wisdom."

-Bacon

 

"Do not seek fame, for in fame lies calamity. Do not meddle in the affairs of others. Never become intimate with Kings and Princes. Donít make a permanent home for yourself and donít settle down in any place. Do not engage too much in music and the sacred dance

he feelings. But do not reject the sacred dance for many are devoted to it. Speak little, eat little, sleep little. Keep away from the crowd and learn to value your own solitude. Do not enter into discussion with young people, with women, rich or worldly folk. Eat pure food and avoid doubtful food. Postpone marriage as long as you can, for marriage arouses desire for the world, and if you are attached to this world, your religion is in vain. Donít laugh uproariously, for too much hilarity destroys the sensitivity of the heart. Nevertheless, you must always be cheerful and ready to rejoice with others. Never despise anyone on any pretext.

Do not embellish your outer person for ornament is a mark of inner poverty.

Never quarrel with people and never ask favours from anyone. Be sure that you are a burden to no-one. Put no confidence in the world or in worldly people. Let your heart be filled with abasement and humility, let your body suffer. Your eyes weep. Let your actions be straightforward and your prayers sincere. Wear old clothes and choose a poor man for your companion. Let your home be a house of prayer and let the highest truth, Haqq Taala , be your guide."

Kwaja Aba al-Khaliq (Sufi)

Masters of Wisdom..by John Bennett

 

                  The Thirteen Virtues by Ben Franklin

1. Temperance: Eat not to dullness. Drink not to elevation.

2. Silence: Speak not but what may benefit others or yourself. Avoid trifling conversation.

3. Order: Let all your things have their places. Let each part of your business have its time.

4. Resolution: Resolve to perform what you ought. Perform without fail what you resolve.

5. Frugality: Make no expense but to do good to others or yourself; i.e., waste nothing.

6. Industry: Lose no time. Be always employed in something useful. Cut off all unnecessary actions.

7. Sincerity: Use no hurtful deceit. Think innocently and justly; if you speak, speak accordingly.

8. Justice: Wrong none by doing injuries or omitting the benefits that are your duty.

9. Moderation: Avoid extremes. Forbear resenting injuries so much as you think they deserve.

10. Cleanliness: Tolerate no uncleanliness in body, clothes, or habitation.

11. Tranquility: Be not disturbed at trifles or at accidents common or unavoidable.

12. Chastity: Rarely use venery but for health or offspring-never to dullness, weakness, or the injury of your own or another's peace or reputation.

13. Humility: Imitate Jesus and Socrates

 

 

Calendar  excerpts by leo Tolstoy

*There are only two ways to live:  either without thinking of death....or with the thought that you approach death with every hour of your life.

*The more upset you are with other people and circumstances, and the more satisfied you are with yourself, the further you are from wisdom.

*Don't compare yourself with others. Compare yourself only with perfection.

*It is not the place we occupy that is important, but the  direction in which we move.

*When you want to escape from rage, do not walk. do not move. do not speak. your rage cannot be justified by anything. The reason for your rage is always inside you.

*Speak only when your words are better than silence. for every time you regret that you did not say something you will regret a hundred times that you did not keep your silence.

*There are two ways not to suffer from poverty. The  first is to acquire more wealth. The second is to limit your requirements. The first is not always in our power. The second is.

*You do not have the right to be unhappy with your life. If you are not  satisfied, see this as a reason to be unsatisfied with yourself.

*The more strictly and mercilessly you judge yourself, the more just and kind you will be in  the judgment of others.

*Strive for goodness without any expectations for rapid or noticeable success. For the further you progress, the higher your ideal of perfection  will rise. yet is is the process itself, this striving, that justifies our lives.
 

From Leo Tolstoy's Calendar

 

 

Let no pleasure tempt thee, no profit allure thee, no ambition corrupt thee, no example sway thee, no persuasion move thee, to do any thing which thou knowest to be evil; so shalt thou always live jollily; for a good conscience is a continual Christmas. Adieu.

-Ben Franklin

 

"The man of wisdom will never allow himself to be caught up in any one form or belief, because he is wise unto himself."

-Ibn Arabi

 

"Wisdom will never let us stand with any man or men on unfriendly footing. We refuse sympathy and intimacy with people, as if we waited for some better sympathy or intimacy to come. But whence and when? Life wastes itself whilst we are preparing to live."

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

 

"No one can give us wisdom. We must discover it for ourselves, on the journey through life, which no one can take for us."

-Sun Bear

 

"We must learn to endure what we cannot avoid. Our life is composed, like the harmony of the world, of contrary things, also of different tones, sweet and harsh, sharp and flat, soft and loud. If a musician liked only one kind, what would he have to say? He must know how to use them together and blend them. And so must we do with good and evil, which are consubstantial, with our life. our existence is impossible without this mixture, and one element is no less necessary for it than the other. to try to kick against natural necessity is to imitate the folly of Cresiphon, who undertook a kicking match with his mule."

-Montaigne

 

The Pursuit of Wisdom attracts Critics

"Those who pursue the higher life of wisdom, who seek to live by spiritual principles, must be prepared to be laughed at and condemned.

   Many people who have progressively lowered their personal standards in an attempt to win social acceptance and life's comforts bitterly resent those of philosophical bent who refuse to compromise their spiritual ideals and who seek to better themselves. Never live your life in reaction to these diminished souls. Be compassionate toward them, and at the same time hold to what you know is good.

   When you begin your program of spiritual progress, chances are the people closest to you will deride you or accuse you of arrogance.

   It is your job to comport yourself humbly and to consistently hew to your moral ideals. Cling to what you know in your heart is best. Then, if you are steadfast, the very people who ridiculed you will come to admire you.

   If you allow the mean-spirited opinions of others to make you waver in your purpose, you incur a double shame."

Epictetus

The Art of Living

 

"Man is no accident of birth nor plaything of fate. through the power within he will overcome indolence, outgrow ignorance, and enter the realm of wisdom. There he will feel a love for all that lives. he will be an everlasting power for good."

-Harold Percival

 

   Psychologically, conventional wisdom becomes the basis for identity and self-esteem. it internalized within the psyche as the superego, as 'that which stands over me" and to which must measure up. The superego (whether we choose to call it that or not) is the internalized voice of culture, the storehouse of oughts within our heads, and it functions as a generally critical (though sometimes congratulatory) internal voice. it is the internal cop and the internal judge. Conventional wisdom provides its specific content. I am who I am according to the standards of conventional wisdom, and I will think well or poorly of myself depending upon how well I measure up to its standards. Conventional wisdom is thus life under the superego.

   In short, whether in religious or secular form, conventional wisdom creates a world in which we live. It constructs a world; indeed, it is the construction. It is a domestication of reality, a net we cast over reality. it is basically life within the socially constructed world.

   Life in this world can be and often is grim. it is a life of bondage to the dominant culture, in which we become automatic cultural persons, responding automatically to the dictates of culture. it is a life of limited vision and blindness, in any which we see what our culture conditions us to see and pay attention to what our culture says is worth paying attention to. It is a world of judgment: I judge myself and others by how well i and they measure up. it is a world of comparisons: I may be aware that I am not the most attractive person in the world, but because i am more attractive than some, I am "okay." Our identity and self-esteem often depend upon these kinds of comparisons, most of which are quite unconscious but nevertheless very powerful.

   It is a life of anxious striving, and feeling okay or not okay to the extent that we do or do not measure up. It is living according to the "performance principle," in which everything deepens upon how well I perform. Life according to the performance principle is also life according to the conformity principle: ironically, we try to be outstanding -to stand out- by conforming to  the standards that our culture values most highly. It is thus also life under the lordship of culture. Finally, it is a life of profound self-preoccupation-with how well we're doing, with our identity, with our security-and thus a life of profound selfishness. Selfishness seldom has to do with reaching for the biggest piece of cake on the plate; rather, it is preoccupation with our selves."

Marcus J. Borg

Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time

 

 

   "In the Wisdom of Solomon, a book written near the time of Jesus, the divine qualities of Sophia are most developed. Sophia is "the fashioner of all things," and the "mother " of all good things. Then, in a remarkable passage, she is spoken of as:

   ....a spirit that is intelligent, holy, unique, manifold, subtle, mobile, clear, unpolluted, distinct, invulnerable, loving the good, keen, irresistible, beneficent, humane, steadfast, sure, free from anxiety, all-powerful, overseeing all, and penetrating through all spirits...."

   Those are , of course, all attributes of God. Moreover, like God she is everywhere present: "she pervades and penetrates all things." Sophia"   "is a breath of the power of God and a pure emanation of the glory of the almighty" and "reflection of eternal light." Like God she is omnipotent and the sustaining source of life: although she is but one, she can do all things, and while remaining in herself, she renews all things.

She enters into relationship with people: "In every generation, she passes into holy souls." she is the source of prophetic inspiration, making people "friends of God and prophets."

-Marcus J. Borg

Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time

 

"The pretense of collective wisdom is the most palpable of all impostures."

-William Godwin

 

                                   ******************

Book: "Wisdom's Children: A Christian Esoteric Tradition" by Arthur Versluis

Book: "How to Live: A Search for Wisdom from Old People" by Henry Alford

Interview in U.S. Catholic  May 1990 "God is more that Two Men and a Bird" by Sandra M. Schneiders

Book: "The wisdom of donkeys: Finding Tranquility In a Chaotic World" by Andy Merrifield

Book: "Theosophia: Hidden Dimensions of Christianity" by Arthur Versluis

Book: "The Wisdom of Ptah-Hotep: Spiritual Treasures from the Age of the Pyramids" by Christian Jacq

Book: "The World's Wisdom: Sacred Texts of the World's Religions" by Philip Novak

Book: "The Wisdom Of Ptah-Hotep: Spiritual Treasures from the Ancient Pyramids and the Oldest Book in the World" by Christian Jacq

Book: "Aristotle's children: How Christians, Muslims and Jews Rediscovered Ancient Wisdom and Illuminated the Dark Ages" by Richard E. Rubenstein

Book: "One Heart: Wisdom from the World's Scriptures" Ed. by Bonnie Louise Kuchler

Book: "The Wisdom of the World: The Human experience of the Universe in Western Thought." Remi Brague

Book: "Where Shall Wisdom be Found?" by Harold Bloom

Book: "Universal Wisdom" by Bede Griffiths

Book: "The Nicomachean Ethics" by ARistotle 

Book: "The Perennial Philosophy" Aldous Huxley

Book: "Forgotten Truth: The Primordial Tradition" by Huston Smith

Book: "The Transcendent Unity of Religions" by Frithjof Schuon

Book: "Pearls of Wisdom: A Harvest of Quotations" by Jerome Agel & Walter D. Gilanze

Book: "Distilled Wisdom" by A.A. Montapert

Book: "A Calendar of Wisdom: Wise Thoughts for Every Day." ed. Leo Tolstoy

Book: "Wisdom: 365 Thoughts from Indian Masters" by Danielle& Olivier Follmi

Book: "Wise Women: Over Two Thousand Years of Spiritual Writings by Women" Ed. by Susan Cahill

Book: "Wisdom: From Philosophy to Neuroscience" Stephen S. Hall

 

 

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