What is wisdom, but first, what are the conditions that make it desirable, if not necessary, and what is its essential objective: life is a desire to live and, even better, a desire to live happily.
As we strive to satisfy this desire, we encounter obstacles that complicate or frustrate our efforts.
This complication or frustration equates to suffering because it impedes the path to satisfaction. Wisdom was created to help us deal with this suffering. It is a versatile product of reason in the face of difficult circumstances.
Thanks to that, happiness is conceivable and achievable, despite everything. It is, therefore, the supreme good. Religion is an asset that many ranks equally high, since it serves the same purpose as wisdom, if different.
The difference is in the way faith and knowledge portray suffering and defines the meaning of life.
From religion, suffering betrays a state of worldly imperfection that is in contradiction to the human desire for perfect happiness.
Consequently, life down here, where humans are bound to suffer, is absurd in itself.
Or, instead, life is strictly intended in terms of the means to a heavenly end in the great beyond.
A life of virtue prepares the way for an afterlife of bliss. Religious belief under the teachings of an inspired spiritual leader who claims to know the intuitive nature of the future.
As I look skeptically at these teachings, I keep my mind open.
They are highly suspect, but the innate nature of their object puts them beyond the scope of any discredit based on conclusive evidence. Anyway, in my view, wisdom is independent of religion, although it can complement the latter.
According to her, life itself has meaning, despite its imperfection that people can learn to accept.
Better yet, they can learn to value this imperfection by realizing that perfection, contrary to popular belief, is not infinitely desirable. Indeed, perfect happiness leaves something to be desired.
By definition, it excludes suffering and, therefore, all forms of complication or frustration. It assumes that the circumstances are favorable; that is, they are not difficult at all.
Therefore, no effort is necessary, while every dream is possible. At first glance, this sounds like the most delicate situation imaginable, and yet taking another look at it will dispel that illusion.
What a strange caprice, in the history of humanity, compelled people from all walks of life to leave their cozy home and embark on risky ventures.
Perhaps this whim is not so strange, after all. A multitude of achievements was made by the sheer joy of winning against high odds.
The operative word is pride, accompanied by excitement. For people with a spirit of conquest, the infinite ease of heaven implies endless boredom.
For them, life together with the struggle that is essential is precisely what perfect happiness leaves behind. It is an opportunity to prove courageous and victorious, although it is also a risk of falling painfully.
Happiness is to grasp this opportunity with courage and obtain a victory over the obstacles that exist between us and success in all the activities that matter most to us.
This victory is often strenuous and always limited, precarious, and transitory, and we are bound to lose the battle in the end; but that makes success even more precious and worthy of tasting.
When trying to define the activities in which we most wish to succeed, we are forced to study our nature to know our purpose. Our growing knowledge depends on this study and this knowledge, leading to this definition.
It begins with an awareness of our animal will to survive because survival is the foundation on which life, in a genuinely human sense, is built. The realization of life experience in this sense continues.
It takes into account both our humanity and our individuality, as members of society with specific tastes and abilities, to which a wide range of activities are suited.
The clearer we are about our purpose, the more we can live our lives with determination and passion and, therefore, with higher chances of succeeding and achieving happiness.
The reverse is also true. Therefore, it is logical that, in seeking wisdom, we lay the foundations for success and happiness.