There are four phases to attaining Wisdom. They are:
The further we get down the line the less we are convinced we know.
- With information we know what we know but we don't know what we don't know. In short, we think we know it all. We aren't listening, we are telling. Our default phrase is "Yes, I knew that."
- With knowledge, we now know what we thought we knew in the information phase. We also recognize which pieces are still information and which pieces have become knowledge. We still think we know it all but we think we know some parts of it better than other parts. We still aren't listening, but we are more selective on what we tell others. We are known to reply, "That makes sense."
- With perspective we begin to see how information is one dimensional and knowledge is narrow. We know better what we know and are beginning to become aware of what we don't know. (As an aside, it is in this phase we often are regarded as condescending to those still in the information or knowledge phases. We mean to be helpful but since those in either of those phases still are not productively listening our help is not well received.) In the perspective phase we are listening and we are offering. Rubbing our chins, we say, "Let me think about that."
- With wisdom we understand we are capable of not knowing a lot of things. We also understand better that thing which we have wrestled with on our way from information to knowledge and through perspective. We are humbled by what we don't know and grateful for what we believe. We are less apt to tell others what we believe and more apt to talk with them about what they want to learn. We are absorbing, and we are patiently available when asked. We don't say much, but when we do, you should probably listen.
This is my perspective on wisdom.
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