That’s ‘wisdom’ – as a verb.
The old philosophers treated their bodies and brains as the object that wisdom would act upon. They treated wisdom as something transformative: something that would change the way they thought about themselves and the world.
And that’s exactly what wisdom is supposed to do. Wisdom is that which changes the way you think about yourself and the world.
Philosophy really means love of change. Love of transformation. Love of growth. Love of curiosity. Love of the person you are, and the person you could be.
But now, we’re getting dangerously close to turning wisdom into a commodity. Post a hashtag about how many books you’re reading this week, and you’re guaranteed at least ten hits of dopamine. I can’t tell if we’re rewarding people for discipline, or for taking pictures of well-known books.
It’s not hard to be wise. I can teach you how to be wise on one step.
- If everyone around you is thinking the same thing, think about something else if it’s appropriate to do so.
Correct: While everyone gets angry at the problem, you think about how to solve the problem.
Incorrect: While everyone cries at the funeral, you daydream about that Chipotle Burrito you ate for lunch yesterday.
I sat down with my buddy Pranav Mutatkar to talk about wisdom, where to find it, and why we should read old philosophers in a short (20 minute) conversation. Pranav is an excellent podcast host. He’s curious (the most important part), quick, smart, and knows how to hold a conversation no matter what format.
(*Pretend I didn’t write this in the middle of the lockdown.)