A hundred years ago the Dean of Oxford was told that the the oak beams in the dining hall were filled with beetles and they needed to be replaced. They didn’t know where they would get beams of that caliber so they called in the college forester and asked if there were any large oak trees they could find around campus.
“I was wondering when you were going to ask me that.” said the forester.
When the college was founded, oak tree’s had been planted to replace the beams in the dining hall.
This plan had been passed down from forester to forester for five hundred years.
It’s one thing to be clever but it’s another thing to be wise. Knowledge without wisdom is dangerous. It destroys nature and will destroy us. We buy stuff extracting it from the earth without ever thinking about where it ends up or how it will be replaced.
In most tribal traditions developing wisdom was the aim of teaching. We’ve lost that. If we want a better future for the next generations we need to move from teaching knowledge to teaching wisdom.
Also published on Medium.