It’s kind of strange, but I feel that I am not really much more wise than when I was young. I sort of feel that I have always had wisdom, and that life—the circumstances, baggage, illusions, people, etc. of my life—have kept me away from it, made it hard for me to access it, but that it is all there.
In this way, I am not so sure that wisdom is something you get or develop, but rather something you sort of excavate to, or, said another way, allow yourself to have by removing the crap and rubble that cloud your clear vision of it. Like reality, it is all there, waiting for us to discover it, to discover what was there all along, hidden by our egos, illusions, and conditioned existences.
All of this supposed ‘wisdom’ and knowledge we have built up in our lives is, in reality, just (illusion-based) window-dressing. This is why I was immediately drawn to Plato’s idea that we are born with all of our knowledge, and that it is just that we have to get to it.
I think we are all born with wisdom, just as we are all connected to reality and truth and love, underneath, it’s just that we need to excavate through all of our crap, all of our illusions, conditioned beliefs and behaviors, assumptions, and experiences to get to it.
I do feel that I have matured and become more world-savvy through the experiences I have had in my life, but I do not think that truth has changed at all during my life; what is unique is my own ‘karma,’ my own unique conditioned existence, which is in the way of me understanding and living that truth.
Too often, and to their detriment, people mistake knowledge, intelligence, and experience, for wisdom. Wisdom is truth; it is reality, the recognition, acceptance, and living by, and of, what is. It is non-ego-based. People think that the ‘smarter’ (the more ‘knowledge’) they get, the wiser they get, but these are not the same, nor are they even necessarily connected or related. In fact, the smarter people get, often the harder it becomes for them to access wisdom, for they become arrogant and cocky. Wisdom has nothing to do with intelligence or trivia (‘knowledge’), and everything to do with openness, courage, compassion, and love. Wisdom is not developed, it is (re-)discovered, it is uncovered, and revealed. We all have wisdom, and it is we who keep ourselves from recognizing and living it; it is we who fuck it up for ourselves.
From my personal notes, 6/22/00