internet, social media, Technology

In Praise of the Fool

A course in graduate school on Shakespeare and Opera introduced me to the idea of the fool, namely the one who everyone thinks has no knowledge but because of this can tell the King just how foolish they really are. No one expects wisdom from him so that he has the freedom to speak the wisdom that others fear. In thinking of the idea of the wise fool, I was reminded of a topic we have visited here before, the difference between knowing and understanding, the difference between knowledge and wisdom. With all the knowledge available at the touch of our fingertips, indeed, Google seems like a greyhound waiting to fetch whatever bit of information we need, we still seem to be a loss as to what to do with it all. We seem to need the wise fool to step up and remind us of what we don’t know. Because we can lock a rocket onto a location 4000 miles away and send it off with the push of a button, should we? Because I can say whatever comes to mind at any time and send it out into the universe forever, is that the right thing to do? In short, shouldn’t we take a moment to listen to the inner fool to remind us of what we don’t know and knowing that, think about what we should or shouldn’t do? Or else we may become like a sightless king, needing only to see better.

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