Wisdom and Wizardry

Harry Potter
Harry Potter (Photo credit: Pixelsior)

I’ve been a fan of sci-fi and fantasy stories since way back. In a land far, far away and all of that. I always wanted to be the wizard or the Yoda-like person. It seemed cool to have all of that wisdom and knowledge. What I didn’t realize when I was young was that the knowledge they had, came like everyone else. They weren’t born with it. They learned it and sometimes they learned it in very dangerous ways.

I just finished reading Skin Game by Jim Butcher from the Harry Dresden series. There’s a scene where Harry goes to the super-bad, mob guy’s business and is blocked by the security guard. The security guard is glaring ominously at Dresden and is quite intimidating. The kicker is what Dresden says,

“Skaldi’s frown would have been intimidating if I hadn’t spent the past few days hanging out with the Genoskwa (scary Sasquatch).” – Harry Dresden

Harry then proceeds to walk past the security knowing where he’s going, because he’d been there before, which looks like wizardry to the security. His only wizardry was experience.

Sometimes age and wisdom and wizardry look the same. Experience. The path and the answers are mapped out in their head. Here’s my favorite line from The Mummy,

Evelyn: The map! The map! We forgot the map!

Rick: Relax. I’m the map. It’s all up here. [points to his head]

Evelyn: Oh, that’s comforting.

Sometimes we overlook the knowledge that we have. You’ve been there, you’ve done that, you have the DVD collection. Share your knowledge if you can. Encourage others around you. It may seem ordinary to you, but the words you say are the words someone else needs to hear. None of us want to sound like a know-it-all, and there’s always a chance that you will, but another may still need your advice.

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The salt parable


A young man called Sretaketu had studied the Vedas for twelve years and was rather full of himself. His father, Uddalaka, asked him a question which he was unable to answer, and then proceeded to teach him a lesson about the fundamental truth of which he was entirely ignorant. He told his son to put a piece of salt into water and report back to him the following morning When his father asked him to produce the salt, Sretaketu could not find it because it had completely dissolved. Uddalaka began to question him:
“Would you please sip it at this end? What is it like?” he said.
“Salt.”
“Sip it in the middle. What is it like?”
“Salt.”
“Sip it at the far end. What is it like?”
“Salt.”
“Throw it away and then come to me.”
He did as he was told but [that did not stop the salt from] remaining the same.
[His father] said to him: “My dear child, it is true that you cannot perceive Being here, but it is equally true that it is here. This first essence–the whole universe has as its Self: That is the Real: That is the Self: that you are, Sretaketu!”

That story is included in a book called A HISTORY OF GOD.

Also as a side note check this out: http://recipes.howstuffworks.com/salt-pictures.htm