The Gap Between Knowledge and Wisdom – “We know, but we can’t”

By reading, listening and observing, we know pretty well what is really good and valuable in life. Most of us have that knowledge. But when it comes to putting into practice what we know, somehow or other we feel we can’t! That’s where the knowledge fails to mature into practical wisdom. I have tried to compile a list of such “we know but we can’t” matters here:

  • We know money is not everything; money can not get happiness, money can not cure diseases, money can not buy peace of mind and excess money rather robs peace of mind. Yet we do not shy away from chasing more money.
  • We know contentment is the key for peace of mind and ambitions drive us mad, but we are hardly ever contended and we believe being ambitious is a qualification for success.
  • We know that eating moderately, eating in time and eating homely food is the secret of good health, but many of us skip our breakfast, take lunch in the evening, and replace a balanced diet with junk food.
  • We know that drinking and smoking habits reduce our lifespan, but we mostly lack the courage to say no to them.
  • We know that watching television is at the best a time-killer and at the worst a mind corrupter. We know that more channels means no better viewing but only a better channel-surfing. Yet we spend money on larger and larger sized TVs and on paid Satellite channels that give more and more of the same crap.
  • We know a promotion in the job invariably adds to more stress, higher responsibility, increased job insecurity, possible transfer and dislocation, increased working hours, and dealing with more number of ‘irresponsible subordinates’ and yet we always look forward to getting a promotion.
  • As women, we know that balancing the office work and domestic work is never easy, is highly taxing, and the menfolk will hardly ever extend a helping hand in the domestic duties. We know that the children are the most emotionally affected ones when both the parents are out in quest of their careers. Yet we will not be prepared to soften down our ambition for the professional growth for the sake of family harmony.
  • We know having debt destroys peace. We know that enjoying what is more-than-affordable using borrowed money will sooner or later kill enjoyment. We think earning more money will relieve us from the burden of debt. But we end up finding that our debt increases in proportion to our earning capacity, simply because our wants too grow in a more than proportionate rate.
  • We know that success in life or making big money is not necessarily linked to one’s educational brilliance. We know that top rank holders in school or college need not be the most successful people in life. Yet we always drive our children to be more and more studious, goad them to become top ranker in class and always compare them with other brilliant children in the known circle.
  • We know that essence to a peaceful life lies in leading a harmonious conjugal life. We know that anything could be sacrificed for the sake of a good family life. We know that all our efforts to earn money, social status and a meaningful life are almost invariably connected with the needs of a good family. Yet we do not mind becoming workaholics, spend the best part of our time in the office or business, ignore the company of the family and yet proudly think that all our toiling is after all for the sake of the family.
  • We know that for a successful family life, egotism is the greatest enemy; Controlling of the tongue and the temper are main requisites for ensuring a happy relationship. We know heart of heart about our imperfections and also the fact that everybody can not be perfect. Yet, we assert our egotism, spew venom with our tongue in a fit of rage, and point out the imperfections of our partner from all angles.
  • We know that husband or wife are to be life partners and if only we show at home just a quarter of the restraint that we put on our egotism and our spoken words with our boss at the office, we can have the happiest family life. Yet we use our partner as an emotional outlet, just to release our accumulated inner tensions carried from work.
  • We know by experience many a times that all things happen by a supreme Divine will and at the best we are just puppets dancing to the tune of that Will. Yet we think that by virtue of our stubborn will and command, everything could be turned right to our selfish favor.
  • We know very well that in the present age, death is looming large at all moments above our heads. Our life can be sniffed out unceremoniously by a terrorist bomber, or a reckless bus/ truck driver at the roads or by our own hyper-tension thanks to the wretched lifestyle of ours. Yet we run around with all our dreams, huge egos, by our uncompromising demands on others and our utter selfishness.