The difference between wisdom and folly…

“Fullness of knowledge always and necessarily means some understanding of the depths of our ignorance, and that is always conducive to both humility and reverence.”

— Robert A. Millikan

Mothers are always RIGHT!

Geez I can smell your doubt all the way here… trust me; this small painful truth slaps you right across your face when you find yourself passing the lesson down to someone else.

Oh be sure its that same lesson that made you think at that time, “how could she possibly be sure of everything, someone here needs to get a grip and it aint me!”

*insert laughter* It’s you!

Anyway so my boy was always top of his class, and he could effortlessly stay there too. Problem is he was all aware of this fact! When he was about to do his certification exams, he had this smug around him that used to irritate the living daylights out of me. I was also studying for my degree in another town so I did not have much time to see this particularly annoying habit develop!

Anyway one time I hear him arguing with my baby sister over the pronunciation of a certain word. He was not arguing from an informed perspective he was arguing from some logic that his 13 year old mashed brain had cooked!!! Never mind that my baby sister has both the age and education advantage over him!

I was infuriated!

So I called him to the bedroom and told him to get me a bucket full of coloured soil. Perplexed he did! Then I asked him to get me another small bucket of sand! Once he had them both, I asked him to pour the sand onto the coloured soil bucket and it should not overflow. Then he was like but, the bucket is already full, where do I get more room?

I looked at him and told him,”Exactly”. You can not fill a bucket that’s already full, you need to empty the bucket to get more room. And that’s the same way with our reason and brains in regards to knowledge, you need to always assume you do not know for you to learn something new. You need to be willing to learn. To be willing to learn you need to be humble. To be humble you need to acknowledge that you know Not!

I told him being top in your class does not mean you know everything, it just means that you studied a little more than the other students in your class.

Then I saw, standing at the door, my mum smiling. Then I remembered a similar talk, a little different, but centred around the same subject of humility. A talk between a 14 year old little girl who was getting the favouritism of her teachers get to her!
That little girl was me!

It might have taken me a few years to acknowledge it, but all along I knew she was right.

The difference between wisdom and folly is the acknowledgement that you do not know and the willingness to be taught. To be taught by life, society, scholars and mostly everyone else! Even those who do not show signs of knowing!

Have a beautiful week!

LipstickNotes

Posted from WordPress for BlackBerry.

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2 Comments

  1. SolsticeSon said,

    PMpSun, 09 Dec 2012 23:34:19 +000034Sunday 17, 2012 at 11:34 pm

    Thanks for the words of wisdom. I love the last bit discerning wisdom from folly in accepting you don’t know and being willing to be taught by all means. You should check out my recent post on the same subject of certain uncertainty.

    • AMpMon, 10 Dec 2012 03:46:13 +000046Monday 17, 2012 at 3:46 am

      Hey SolsticeSon,
      Thanks for reading. I will be sure to check out the post and tell you my thoughts on the same.


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