We want to be wise, men are so wonderfully wise in our minds, and it seems no matter what they are asked they know almost everything. This yields all kinds of ideas, which have no basis in reality. Not because men cannot be wise, but wisdom is not the same as knowing terribly much.
To know very much is the same thing as being filled with the knowledge that we have acquired through our training and books, which may as well be a hindrance to us than the other. Many people try to make themselves greater with the wise sentences and believe they are thereby wise, but there is not much wisdom in pretending and believing all kinds of things.
Someone once said that he knew only that he knew nothing, he might have been wise or not, but many people have repeated these words and some stylized and modified them, like the man who said, wisest is she who knows what she knows not.
Many a man can be wise and still not know much, because wisdom lies rather in being able to take what circumstances bring us, and make of it the best we can.
It is interesting to see how often we put out meaningless words and phrases. Because it does not matter how we look at it, this statement ‘to know what we know not, is incorrect. It can simply not be right. How can anyone know what he does not know? We can certainly both know and not know, but not be aware of it. We can only do one of two at a time. It is clear that she, who knows what she knows not, knows.
We can believe or think that we do not know. Not know it. And we think that based on past experience. We become aware of something we did not know and therefore our knowledge has increased accordingly. That is, we now know something that we did not know before. From that we think that there is more that we do not know. But it need not be. Perhaps we have, here and now, all the knowledge there is. We have no chance of knowing it. We can only believe or think that is the case.
It does not matter how we try to correct this sentence and use the word that in instead what and then say, wisest is she who knows that she does not know. What remains is that we cannot know that we do not know. It is to know. We can only suppose or think it. That is all.
How often do we not face the fact that we confuse what is with what we think is?
We all know that the sun will rise tomorrow as it has done all our life. Or do we? We have maybe changed what we believe or think into certainty without noticing it?
The sun has certainly risen in the morning and sat in the evening longer than the oldest men can remember. And it is not unreasonable to assume that it will continue to do so. But it does not change the fact that we do not know if it will keep on rising.
We are often carless with words and phrases and by that only harming ourselves.
If we move this image a little closer to us then we can see that this is just what we also do in our relations with each other.
So we believe or think that a certain appearance gives a certain response.
We believe, for example, that so-called negative appearance leads to negative response and a positive appearance some positive response. And it does not matter what our ideas of negative or positive are. We have, more often than not decided how others are.
We believe or think something and then make it a definite fact of our lives.
But as we cannot know what and that we know or whether the sun will rise tomorrow or not, we cannot know the consequences of a particular behavior, or what to expect from others. We can only suppose it.
And we must see that it raises only a variety of problems. Because when we get a different response than we expected we are disappointed. That disappointment creates more than often disputes and other disagreement, which easily could have been avoided. If we just let be to create and predetermined.
All that is needed is to see the reality of what is, away from what we think is. We only need to lay down our prejudices.
Because to believe or suppose, is to decide, judge beforehand, which is prejudice.
No matter how we turn. We can really never know anything with certainty. Neither what nor that.
To be wise is therefore not to know one and other, but knowing nothing. For he who knows nothing has all possibilities. As he knows, whether some or all, his possibilities have reduced according to his knowledge.
Thus wisdom can only be that to know nothing. Open to all possibilities. Continuously. To be. Here and now. Nothing more.