Wisdom refers to a quality of character or mind.  Wisdom is being able to apply knowledge, theory, and experience with insight and good judgment.  Wisdom, a deep knowledge of what is right, can be about truth or goodness.  Wisdom can also refer to the body of knowledge and experience passed on from previous generations within a culture, or across cultures, that equips one to make wise choices and live a good life.

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I do not want the peace that passeth understanding. I want the understanding which bringeth peace.

— Helen Keller

When you’re young, you wonder what all these old people are droning on about, trying to impart their wisdom. It’s not relevant to you because being young is such a specific thing. Thank God for that. Thank God for the young people who go out and demonstrate against rampant capitalism or whatever.

— Helen Mirren

It is characteristic of wisdom not to do desperate things.

— Henry David Thoreau

A man is wise with the wisdom of his time only, and ignorant with its ignorance.

— Henry David Thoreau

Wisdom cannot be imparted. Wisdom that a wise man attempts to impart always sounds like foolishness to someone else … Knowledge can be communicated, but not wisdom. One can find it, live it, do wonders through it, but one cannot communicate and teach it.

— Hermann Hesse, Siddhartha

Knowledge can be communicated by not wisdom.

— Hermann Hesse

When health is absent, wisdom cannot reveal itself, art cannot manifest, strength cannot fight, wealth becomes useless, and intelligence cannot be applied.

— Herophilus

Science is organized knowledge. Wisdom is organized life.

— Immanuel Kant

The saddest aspect of life right now is that science gathers knowledge faster than society gathers wisdom.

— Isaac Asimov

The wisdom of the wise, and the experience of ages, may be preserved by quotations.

— Isaac D’Israeli

The quality of our thoughts is bordered on all sides by our facility with language.

— J. Michael Straczynski

His grief he will not forget; but it will not darken his heart, it will teach him wisdom.

— J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King

There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tor high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.

— J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King

Never laugh at live dragons.

— J.R.R. Tolkien

We cannot advance without new experiments in living, but no wise man tries every day what he has proved wrong the day before.

— James Truslow Adams

Angry people are not always wise.

— Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

Insights from myth, dreams, and intuitions, from glimpses of an invisible reality, and from perennial human wisdom provide us with hints and guesses about the meaning of life and what we are here for. Prayer, observance, discipline, thought and action are the means through which we grow and find meaning.

— Jean Shinoda Bolen

Insights from myth, dreams, and intuitions, from glimpses of an invisible reality, and from perennial human wisdom provide us with hints and guesses about the meaning of life and what we are here for. Prayer, observance, discipline, thought and action are the means through which we grow and find meaning.

— Jean Shinoda Bolen

Knowledge speaks, but wisdom listens.

— Jimi Hendrix

Strategic planning is worthless — unless there is first a strategic vision.

— John Naisbitt

We are misnamed. We call ourselves Homo sapiens, the “wise man,” but that’s more of a boast than a description. What makes us wise?… A more apt name for our species would be Homo prospectus, because we thrive by considering our prospects. The power of prospection is what makes us wise…

— John Tierneyn & Martin E. P. Seligman

Mindfulness is awareness that arises through paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment, non-judgmentally… in the service of self-understanding and wisdom.

— Jon Kabat-Zinn

Pick battles big enough to matter, small enough to win.

— Jonathan Kozol

May you live every day of your life.

— Jonathan Swift

The teacher who is indeed wise does not bid you to enter the house of his wisdom but rather leads you to the threshold of your mind.

— Kahlil Gibran

Keep me away from the wisdom which does not cry, the philosophy which does not laugh….

— Kahlil Gibran

Listen to the Exhortation of the Dawn!
Look to this Day!
For it is Life, the very Life of Life.
In its brief course lie all the
Verities and Realities of your Existence;
The Bliss of Growth,
The Glory of Action,
The Splendor of Beauty;
For Yesterday is but a Dream,
And Tomorrow is only a Vision;
But Today well lived makes every
Yesterday a Dream of Happiness, and every
Tomorrow a Vision of Hope.
Look well therefore to this Day!
Such is the Salutation of the Dawn.

— Kalidasa, from the Sanskrit

Throw away sacredness and wisdom, and people will be one hundred times happier.

— Laozi (Lao Tzu)

Fill your bowl to the brim and it will spill. Keep sharpening your knife and it will blunt.

— Laozi (Lao Tzu)

Those who know are wise. Those who know themselves are enlightened.

— Laozi (Lao Tzu)

We can know only that we know nothing. And that is the highest degree of human wisdom.

— Leo Tolstoy, War and Peace

Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone. The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non-essentials.

— Lin Yutang

As we grow in wisdom, we pardon more freely.

— Madame de Stael

As we grow in wisdom, we pardon more freely.

— Madame de Stael

The stellar universe is not so difficult of comprehension as the real actions of other people.

— Marcel Proust
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