After attending the lecture about Virginia Woolf, there was a very interesting question that made me ponder.
Are knowledge and wisdom the same?
Quickly following after, it was stated that the two could be different, or they’re linked. For instance, wisdom may be considered as applied knowledge. Knowledge can be seen as information that the brain has processed and kept in memory.
But what was put forth is what can be considered as knowledge?
Knowledge can honestly be considered anything and everything. Even something as simple as “chairs are there for sitting” can be considered a piece of knowledge even if basic.
Upon the notion of wisdom, it was mentioned that there are many people out in the world who do not even have an educational background, or have had any education of some kind, yet they can be quite wise. Again, this alludes to the fact that knowledge can be anything and is technically everything, and thus you do not really need something like a PhD. to show that you are knowledgeable and wise (though understandably having one would be helpful for certain situations).
So, I do believe the two are definitely linked.
However, following that, the critical point of not necessarily having too much knowledge, but rather believing that you have a lot of knowledge is brought up. To be specific, the statement was also brought up during the lecture:
“If we really had so much knowledge, we wouldn’t be having any wars. If we really had so much knowledge, then there would be no need for the current election in America.”
Because as mentioned before: knowledge can be about anything and everything. Human concepts like emotions and empathy included. Awareness of pride and thus, humility, would also be part of that encyclopedia of what constitutes as a piece of knowledge.
On the other hand, having too much knowledge and being aware of it is also quite dangerous. Though again, that also links to an inflation of pride. Except here, it is because of this wisdom where the knowledge is applied to the situation. If someone uses this knowledge wrongly, then it could end with things such as more efficient forms of propaganda and criminal activities.
So whether the person believes they have a lot of knowledge and wisdom but lacks it, or the person does have a lot of both and is dangerously aware, it is still dangerous. Though knowledge and wisdom are great and important tools , they are also dangerous and potentially destructive.
You just need to not have pride swallow you.