When you hear or see that word, what do you think? Far too many people seem to mostly draw nearly a blank these days. If asked what it means, they might hesitantly venture that wisdom has something to do with age, or insight, or a calm and peaceful perspective on things. But it seems to be a word and a concept on the far periphery of our culture now. And that's the opposite of how things should be.
Wisdom isn't an extra swirl on the icing of the cake representing a good life well lived. It's a main ingredient of any such cake whatsoever.
There have been times and places of greater perspicacity where wisdom was seen as the ultimate edge in life, or in business, or in all political and military affairs. Look at the book of Proverbs in the Bible. Wisdom is praised as precious beyond all other things. A Japanese proverb states that wisdom and virtue are the two wheels of a cart. In my view, you can't have one without the other. And you can't have either without at least some measure of the additional quality of love praised by top saints and sages—that compassionate care and concern for ourselves and others that lifts us above the petty and degrading squabbles and needless anxieties of this world.
My job is to bring people more wisdom for their lives. And this is more of a challenge than you might imagine. I used to think that people pursue what they need and what they want. I now realize that we pursue only what we KNOW we need and what we want. And too many people in our day have no realization that they need wisdom for the journey. They think that "basic common sense" is all they need, and they have too low a standard even for what constitutes that.
Help me bring an appreciation for wisdom back to the culture at a time when we all greatly need it—across demographics, professions, genders, political parties, industries, and races. Its absence grows increasingly dangerous as the world rambles and meanders forward without its guidance.