Who is wiser? 5

The one who learns from doing or the one who learns from others?


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5 thoughts on “Who is wiser?

  • John

    Learning by doing sticks with me longer. But, it can be very painful and is slow. Learning from others is quicker and likely will address areas I would miss by trial and error. Here is the answer you are seeking: the wise person does both.

    The last time you lunched with Jobs, did he tell you if and when the ipad nano would actually happen? I’m interested if it does. I went to Best Buy/Tuscaloosa to buy a Kindle today, and they were all sold out. Then the nice lady started showing me Nooks and ipads….

  • Loony

    For me, wisdom only comes from both in combination: Someone tells me the wise thing to do, but I do the opposite and everything goes wrong. Then I say to myself, “Ah ha! Now I understand what he meant!”

  • Chris Brady Post author

    Your responses are interesting and certainly reasonable. I was thinking about this from a different perspective, however.

    Consider it this way, Who is wiser, the one who accepts someone else’s testimony that an extramarital affair is deleterious to one’s marriage or the one who has to find out “for themselves” by having an affair.

  • Brooke

    Before your comment, I was going to say, “The one who learns by doing with others.” That is, the one who learns collaboratively.

    Taking your example, I find I look at it this way: I’m a fool if I don’t take other people’s experience seriously. (Insert my usual plug on reading narrative fiction early and often.) At the same time, I have to be tested by some near or analogous experiences to really “get” it. To follow through on your example: If I have had genuinely painful opportunities to be tempted, and if I have had other, lesser experiences of failing trust with my partner, then I am probably better “primed” to benefit from a friend’s heartbreak than I was when I was younger and greener.