I have a whole category here titled More Important than Money. The posts in this category discuss things like good health, family, children, and so on. But today I want to add another item to the list: wisdom. Consider this from the New Living Version of the Bible:
Wisdom is more valuable than gold and crystal. It cannot be purchased with jewels mounted in fine gold. Job 28:17
I batted around a few ideas on how to discuss this issue (such as the difference between knowledge and wisdom, how you know if you're wise or not and so on), but I think I'll just give you a few of my thoughts on the topic and then let you all add yours. Here's my take on the whole relationship between wisdom and wealth:
1. No amount of money can buy wisdom. You can have all the money in the world and still not be wise (though you can be knowledgeable or you can hire those with wisdom.)
2. With wisdom, you can (usually) get money. In fact, many wise people are well off.
3. Wisdom can also help you live a more meaningful and fulfilling life -- certainly something that is more important than money.
And a few more thoughts on wisdom from the NIV:
Blessed is the man who finds wisdom, the man who gains understanding, for she is more profitable than silver and yields better returns than gold. Proverbs 3:13-14
Pride only breeds quarrels, but wisdom is found in those who take advice. Proverbs 13:10
By your wisdom and understanding you have gained wealth for yourself and amassed gold and silver in your treasuries. Ezekiel 28:4
In the name of Shinto. With permission from my caring and honorable teacher, and greetings to my heroic and kind classmates, I will begin my essay.
Of course it is clear and logical to all that knowledge is much better than wealth, if knowledge is practiced wisely. I will elaborate. With wealth one can travel from our village to town and buy ice cream, and buy an airplane ticket and travel anywhere in the world he wishes. With wealth one can buy a computer, and instead of fishing all day, one can watch foreign movies and have fun talking in chat-rooms and playing games. In short, wealth is fun but knowledge is more important than fun. To gain knowledge one has to do homework all the time, memorize poems, learn math and arithmetic, and at the end when one finally gets a bad report card he gets an ample reprimand from his honorable teacher, and an ample reprimand from his noble parents, but knowledge is essential for us to live. Wealth is fun all the time, but knowledge is madness sometimes. I want to become a knowledgeable man one day, but my father says I have to be wise first.
My mother, the honorable Akiko, says if I drop a 20-Yen coin in my piggy bank every day, when my whiskers come out I will be a rich man. But, my father says my mother has a lot of patience, like a sleeping volcano, but from time to time her breaths comes out from a hot place. I do not know what my father's intent is, but for all I have seen, my mother does not seem to be full of hot air.
My uncle, the honorable Masato, was saying the other day that if a man is rich he can go to the Wonderland in town and play all day, ride the carousels and ferrous wheels, and then eat pizza and go to coffee shops.
My father is a heroic man. He was a fisherman before the sea took everything. He says when he was a boy, about my age; he studied hard so one day he could go to a university in town. He wanted to get a job in the big city, somewhere away from the shores, but his father, my grandfather, the honorable Hisoka, drowned in the sea and my father had to abandon his studies to help the family. He tells me, study your math and science and become an engineer, a good engineer, not like the engineers who built the power plants. My father says, in the big cities there are many knowledgeable men without wisdom, so their good intent turns to evil. They think they have figured out everything, but without wisdom knowledge is worthless, he says. Nature might wait patiently for one hundred years but then it will destroy everything the unwise knowledgeable men have built.
Uncle Masato says most big cities are built on higher grounds, so they do not get flooded, because rich people keep their money in the big cities and they do not want their money to get washed away. He says in the big cities they construct strong building so they will not fall down when ground shakes. He says did you see any tall building fall down. That is where rich people keep their money, he says. I do not know. Otsuchi looked like a big city to me, but Otsuchi is gone now. Uncle Masato says when you grow up get a good job in the big city. We will come to visit you when the village gets flooded again.
My father says when you go to the big city to study there won't be anyone else left in our family to catch fish. He says when he was a boy at first he did not want to grow up to be a fisherman. He says he did not like the smell of fish, but now he knows there are things in this world that smell worse than fish. He says knowledgeable people in the big cities make bonfires that stink like a pile of burning poison. The bonfires get so big that they can no longer be extinguished, so the bonfires make huge black smokes and stink up the whole world. When the unwise knowledgeable men in the big cities cannot put out the fires they get moody and give orders to others to do something about the fires before everything in this world burns up in flames. Your ancestors have lived in this village for thousands of years without burning it up. You have to be very wise to be able to survive for thousands of years in the same place without destroying it, he says.
I do not know what my father's intent is, but my intention is to study my lessons and when I grow up go to Osaka to get an education in the university, and when I come back I will catch all the fish in the sea for him.
Conclusion: We conclude from this essay that people with wealth have a lot of fun, but with knowledge and wisdom people do not have to get moody and give orders; that means they have to be wise first then knowledgeable. Therefore, in my humble opinion, wise knowledge is much better than wealth.
This was my Essay.