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On the Virtues Related to Knowledge and Wisdom

by Lee Duane FitzSimmons

Although the body will deteriorate over time, knowledge and wisdom grow with age. Knowledge is accumulated when information from experience is correctly absorbed and employed by the psyche. By developing the types of virtues that are usually desired after philosophical contemplation, it becomes easier to gain larger amounts of true knowledge that can be converted into wisdom. These noble qualities are only fully understood and appreciated after an individual has truly searched the soul and made all of the necessary emotional adjustments that are needed to accommodate these virtues.

In order to understand these virtues and emotional states more completely, it now becomes necessary to elucidate upon these matters. Once information is correctly perceived and then employed in a pragmatic fashion, it becomes knowledge that may then be converted into empathy and wisdom. One's emotional intelligence must be highly developed so that a greater amount of objective thought can flourish within one's intellect. If any severe emotional imbalances are present, then they need to be effectively managed, so they will not impede the process of these conversions.

The Supper at Emmaus by Rembrandt (1648)

Wisdom is knowledge that is can be used to gain additional insight that is not readily apparent to most. However, it should be realized that in order to use wisdom in this manner, it is usually necessary to make generalizations and then subsequently apply them to other situations that may or not be related to the knowledge that was used in the initial generalization process. The danger of dogmatic simplification often rears its ugly head during this process. True wisdom knows how to avoid this danger by correctly cross-referencing other generalizations from many different areas of knowledge. Thus, any conclusions that are drawn are more likely to be free from error.

It should also be realized that there is also the danger of sophistic manipulation when the process of generating wisdom from knowledge is corrupted by those seeking excessive privilege. It is rather easy for any clever individual to generalize knowledge in a way that mimics true wisdom. While true wisdom can be shared with others quite easily, it is still necessary that each person not rely on any external source.

The only certain wisdom is true wisdom that is generated by the individual for the individual.

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Copyright 2013 by Lee Fitzsimmons