nothing but the facts

June 13, 2008 at 10:38 pm | Posted in Professional Development | 3 Comments

I have three young girls and trying to teach them to think critically is proving one of the more formidable challenges I face as a parent. Our society (and our own house, for that matter) is loaded with more facts than ever. Data points. Isolated bits of information coming via the Internet, books, TV, radio, you name it.

To gain knowledge, we need to put facts together in a meaningful way that is useful. And that is good. But my ultimate goal is for my girls to become *wise*, and wisdom is the *appropriate* use of knowledge toward a more noble end. I suppose we could debate a lifetime over what is “appropriate” and “noble” but I think you see my larger point here.

Are we becoming so inundated with facts that we have less and less knowledge? Is that leading to a decline in critical thinking? Is wisdom becoming a lost treasure in our businesses and personal lives? It seems some wisdom is only achieved through time and experience. I hope we don’t lose sight of that and “dismiss” older generations too soon from our circles of influence. That’s one thing I love about coaching. You’d be amazed how many retired coaches stay busy taking questions from young folks just getting their start. It’s a great thing.

I hope in technology we don’t exclusively pursue the fool’s gold of raw facts in exchange for the true riches of wisdom.

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