WISDOM UNDERSTANDING AND COURAGE

Still busy. Here’s another old journal entry on this subject:

WISDOM, UNDERSTANDING AND COURAGE

So I need to understand the heroic imperative for repose.

I need to have a better understanding of the difference between wisdom and understanding.

Understanding is knowing things. Wisdom is knowing what to do with the things you know.

I can know something. Like, I can know that my best friend’s husband is cheating on her. But I need wisdom to know what to do with that knowledge.

[Editor’s note: this is a theoretical situation!]

So in life, we first have to get the understanding. We have to know what is going on, what the pieces are. We have to know how it works. Then we can take that knowledge, that understanding, and find the wisdom to use it.

The problem is, we can never have full understanding. And life goes on. We can wait for understanding, try harder to look for it, and know more and more. But the moment of wisdom passes us by. There are times when we have to act on the understanding we have. We have to go forward, make a decision, take action. DO what we need to do. But we are acting on incomplete information!
Always.
It takes wisdom to know when to make a move.

Then there are times, when action is not yet required. When the right and proper thing to do is wait for the wisdom to come. Or the wise thing to do is nothing.

In the first case, doing nothing is a form of cowardice, not facing that fact that something needs to be done. It’s a smoke screen, saying, “I don’t understand, I don’t understand.” Really, you need to act, to move forward on what you do understand.

But the second case takes courage too. It’s very scary to wait, when you want to take action. To pause. To see what others will do. To let God work out a situation. I have found that I want to rush in, and fix and solve, and do whatever it takes to make it happen. But there are things that are out of my control. I can’t make them happen. When I try, I beat myself senseless against a brick wall. I am frustrated, worried, upset. I work myself into a frenzy over something that I cannot control.

How absurd!

This is not the way God intended things to be.

But how do I know when I am supposed to wait, and when I am supposed to move?
It seems to me that I can’t always know. I am destined to make mistakes.
I don’t want to makes mistakes. I want to do it correctly all the time.

But the setup is such that I’m not perfect. Even if I wanted to be (and I do!), I can’t be. Not yet anyway. It takes a process to become more perfect. I don’t think I can attain it in my lifetime, but I think that every right choice I make leads to a better life for me. So I keep trying.