Tag Archives: knowledge

The myth of wisdom and age

Wisdom comes from experiential doing.

Children gain huge amounts of daily wisdom through play.

Children gain huge amounts of daily wisdom through play.

Via WordPress I came across a video of a nine-year-old child offering their insights on deep questions relating to the universe.  Everyone was commenting how wise this child was, and indeed his insights are good.  The video reminded me of the insights on what it means to be happy by another nine-year-old via WordPress.

What is wisdom? Wisdom is obtained through experiential doing.  You won’t find wisdom reading a book, or watching television, or updating Facebook, those are spectator activities that offer knowledge rather than wisdom.  You can study the chemistry of an apple, but until you bite the apple you will gain no wisdom of the apple.  In life you have to be the actor on stage rather than the spectator in the audience to obtain wisdom.

Children are always involved in experiential activity, they are building up a huge amount of wisdom through their daily play.  The adult favours mostly routine and spectator activities which whilst their knowledge rises, their gain in wisdom is limited, and perhaps even falls through forgetfulness.

Leonardo da Vinci said:

“I have been impressed with the urgency of doing. Knowing is not enough; we must apply. Being willing is not enough; we must do.”

Because of his childhood poverty da Vinci never had a university education, he was treated with contempt by scholars, but they forgot that their knowledge was useless unless it was applied through the doing, da Vinci was a doer, and history stands in awe of his accomplishments.

The apparent connection of age with wisdom is a myth for the adult has the advantage over the child only of the number of years of opportunity to accumulate wisdom from experiential doing, whilst the child has been eating up wisdom through quality doing every day of their childhood, by the age of nine they are sometimes glowing with wisdom.  In addition the modern adult is stupider than their ancestors thanks to the modern technology that reduces them to spectators rather than doers.

Paradigm shift into sustainability

The global realignment to a sustainable future is through pain and knowledge.

Will humanity achieve a paradigm shift of the ugly duckling into a swan?

Will humanity achieve a paradigm shift of the ugly duckling into a swan?

Like so many lemmings humanity marches onward to the abyss, yet I hold out hope for a change of direction. Humanity lives in a current paradigm of growth through relentless consumption.  What do I mean by paradigm, I mean a worldview in the social context, one that is made up of beliefs and behaviours.  The current paradigm of relentless consumption is unsustainable, its conclusion is a predictable mass breakdown of social, political, economic and environmental systems that humanity depends on.

The answer is a paradigm shift, a change of worldview. How? There are two ways a paradigm will shift, often the combination of both, which is via pain and knowledge.  As energy systems breakdown humanity suffers pain, there is a conflict arising between the inertia of the familiar and the need for relief from the pain.  To cross the threshold the pain would overcome inertia leading to a paradigm shift.  The provision of knowledge can also produce a paradigm shift, for humanity given the option might prefer a new paradigm to an old unsustainable version.

With crisis hides the blessing for those that seize the opportunity.  If an old paradigm causes suffering, the individual who offers a solution, a relief to pain can reap the benefits as befitting a hero.  All those who are trailblazing ahead of the masses towards a new paradigm of sustainability are in a position of influence to educate and show the rest of humanity a new paradigm of beliefs and behaviours that will act as a relief to world suffering through sustainable living.

Blogging is a great tool of communication

Blogging is a fast way to exchange knowledge, network and build a community.

Blogs are a simple and effective communication tool.

Blogs are a simple and effective communication tool.

The Guardian recently asked the followers of its sustainability section for one tip on how to  communicate sustainability to others.  I suggested blogging, and gave the Liberated Way as an example of such a blog.  This was a competition, the prize being a free place on a communications course.

My tip made the top five:

“My tip is use a blog to communicate sustainability values and ideas to people. I have started doing this through my blog at http://www.liberatedway.com”;

I think people can be too clever or intellectual in trying to share the values of sustainability with others, which can discourage rather than motivate others to adopt a sustainable attitude and activity to our planet.  If humanity is to have a future on this planet then everyone has a part to play, so any tool or communication process has to be simple and inclusive to reach everyone.  Blogging achieves this.

My tip is now in the voting, a process that will last only two days.  If you think my tip is worth voting for, please do give me your vote.  My tip is the last option, which mentions this Liberated Way blog.

Knowledge is power

Knowledge reveals and unlocks doors of opportunity.

Knowledge is power.

Knowledge is power.

My progress to live a sustainable life is hampered by lack of knowledge.  It is unfortunate that the knowledge I seek is scattered across many sources, and is less than easy to track down.  It would seem that for humanity to progress on a sustainable path then knowledge must be freely available in easily assessable locations.

Surfing the internet it is a challenge to find internet sites on sustainability for the individual.  It appears that sustainability has the mentality of being the province of the politician, academic or the corporate for which nearly all sustainability websites seem to cater for.  Since it is you and me, the individual, who are the change masters to make sustainability in the world happen, it is a madness that knowledge is targeted in a top-down rather than a bottom-up way.

Similarly, when I visited the bookshops of Colchester I found just one book that addressed sustainability.

For the change master to take the actions to create a sustainable world the doors of opportunity must be revealed, and the keys to unlocking those doors provided to them; which can happen if knowledge is made available to you and me.

The following are the sustainability actions that this quest for knowledge resulted in:

Sustainability Action 11 : I purchased a second-hand book on sustainability

Try and buy second-hand; it saves you money and reuses items people dispose of.  I went into a second-hand bookshop in Colchester to buy “Where on earth are we going?” by Jonathon Porritt.  The book is twenty years old but deals with the problems and solutions that are still relevant today around the subject of sustainability.  The book when new is £9.99 and I got it for £1.50.

Sustainability Action 12 : I joined the Guardian Sustainable Business forum.

I run a business, so finding this site was a treasure trove of knowledge for me.  Dedicated to the business owner, but also relevant to the individual, this site is hosted by the Guardian newspaper.  The Guardian is a social and liberal publication that has recognised that sustainability is an important area to be involved in.

Global weather turns hostile

2013 likely will be worse than 2012 for extremes of weather.

Two glowing eyes in the clouds promises a harsh global experience in 2013.

Two glowing eyes in the clouds promises a harsh global weather experience in 2013.

A few days ago I was bouncing around Colchester happy as a bee as the mild spring brought pleasant weather after the floods of rain during December.  The winter in Britain depresses me for its cold and darkness, so I have been liking the mild temperatures this winter, with few frosts, tons of rain and one day of snow.

The blossoms are on the trees; foraging bees were out gathering food; the birds singing their hearts out, creating their territories and finding a mate; the first flowers of spring, including snowdrops were blooming.  At the back of my mind I warned myself to be wary of my optimism, for the British weather is a temperamental animal, which can turn nasty in an instant.  Today temperatures dropped more than ten degrees Celsius on the previous day, something that has an impact of a sledgehammer on the human body, which dislikes sudden temperature changes.  The savage frosts were back and a warning of snow was being made all over the internet.  Damn!

The observant can over time spot trends, which includes weather.  The news of the first ten days of 2013 is grim.  The Middle East has been hammered by the worst storms in ten years, heavy rains and snow; a sense of disbelief that Jerusalem is at a standstill due to heavy snowfall.  In the northern provinces of China winter fell like a hungry beast trapping more than a thousand ships in sea ice, and plunging temperatures deep below freezing point.  In the USA, suffering the continuing drought, winter storms dumped tons of snow on suffering Americans.  New Zealand is in drought, their rivers at the lowest point in years.  Record killer heat waves in Australia and Tasmania resulted in vast wild fires that destroyed homes, took lives and wiped out large swathes of forest and innumerable numbers of wildlife.  Distressed whales that usually visit in summer appeared in winter in Canada, and are a cause of concern being trapped under ice with a diminishing gap in the ice providing them with air.

My prediction is that the weather in 2013 is going to give humanity a worse kicking than it did in 2012.


Sustainability Action 10: I signed up to a sustainability seminar in Colchester.

Knowledge is power, for knowledge provides the keys to open doors to success.  My progress to be a sustainable individual is hampered by the limits on my knowledge; it is through education that I can increase my knowledge, thus to be a better sustainable individual.  I today signed up to a one day seminar on sustainability at Essex University in Colchester for next week.

I shall learn about how to involve other people in a cooperative atmosphere to design and follow a sustainable process that benefits society, business and the environment.  Currently the world follows unsustainable processes that will lead to human extinction; those processes need to be changed, and it requires all individuals to make those changes together if humanity is to survive.