Tom Dispatch

Yes indeed, if you want a little reading that is true and light-but-not-simple, and doesn’t claim much of anything except reality.

“Twain was careful to mind his manners when speaking from lecture platforms . . . He bottled his ferocious ridicule in the writing (much of it in newspapers) that he likened to “painted fire,” bent to the task of burning down with a torch of words the pestilent hospitality tents of self-glorifying cant. He had in mind the health of the society on which in 1873 he bestowed the honorific “The Gilded Age” in recognition of its great contributions to the technologies of selfishness and greed, a society making itself sick with the consumption of too many sugarcoated lies and one that he understood not to be a society at all but a state of war.”

Definition – Can You Improve It?

131208-ice-ASC_7643RLSsI think of wisdom as fundamentally the ability to understand the relationship between one’s cultural knowledge and one’s cultural and physical environment. I started using the term “wisdom cloud” to refer to the accumulated wisdom of our human cultural environment, and I am assuming the function of our cultural environment is to provide an environment in which people mature knowing how to behave in ways that will benefit the welfare of the community. I use the term “wisdom systems” to refer to subsets of belief that have been formalized. It’s not the best term one could use because it implies that all wisdom systems are wise. This is not so. The wise system is that which results in the greatest overall benefit to Life, if well used, because it most accurately reflects fundamental biological reality, or now that we also must deal with scientific information, does not deny the reality of measurable facts.

131214-Clubhouse-ASC_7673YLSs copy 2If I were to state this from the viewpoint of an omnipotent creator I would say that Creator set in motion the laws of nature (which are super-human and which humans can neither fully understand nor change) to select for or grow a system that functions according to the greatest good for all sentient beings, which ultimately is the greatest good for the one Life of Earth.

The Creation is a miracle that we should celebrate and protect. This year I plan to celebrate that miracle at a midnight musical service, and I wish you the same or similar experience.