I know lots of things: some facts – although it’s not my speciality to remember facts! ; how to do a variety of things; how to behave well; what to do in different situations. Over the years I’ve collected a lot of knowledge of one sort or another.
However, that’s not enough. I also need to know how and when to use my knowledge – and that’s our wisdom.
We have a name for those who use their knowledge to put others down, or make them look stupid – a know-it-all. This is not wisdom because it’s using knowledge to the detriment of others.
We have also probably all ‘known better’ at different times in our lives, when we have not used what we know to improve a situation. For example: ‘I should have known better than to shout at the shop assistant when he couldn’t find my order.’
Another example of knowing without wisdom is running rife at the moment – taking ideas or opinions or misinformation as facts/truth. We accumulate knowledge by checking its truth before we accept it fully, if we are wise, and we learn how to discriminate.
Knowledge is all the stuff we collect, while wisdom is knowing how to sort it, relate different aspects to each other, and when and how to use it.
I know I’ve collected a lot of knowledge. I hope I’m continuing to become better at being wise, don’t you?