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Anchor 1

Impromptu / Extempore  speeches

Foreword                            Speech2

1. What would you rather be - wise or intelligent?

What would you rather be - wise or intelligent?

Well, the question posed here, is what would I rather be – wise or intelligent? Well, I think I should be wise when answering this question, and answer that I should be both wise as well as intelligent.

That is my answer: I should be both wise as well as intelligent.

Well, I was being wise here. Or am I mistaken? I was not being wise, I was being intelligent.

That, ladies and gentlemen, sums up my confusion when answering this question posed to me.

Is there really any difference between intelligence and wisdom?

Have you read any writings by Jack London?

He lived in the South Pacific Islands. The social system there in those far off times, was totally different from his native-English culture.

In his writings, there are a lot of allusions to the ‘wise men’ of those social systems. They were generally the aged, respected men of the village. They were wise, but were they intelligent?

Am I confused? Or am I confusing you?

Well, I am in a quandary.

Or am I talking in paradoxes?

There are times, when we listen to our intuition. It is said, that we are listening to our heart. Well, is our heart wise, rather than intelligent?

Is being wise being smart or is it the intelligent man who is smart? Is there really any real difference between these two words? Is one just the synonym of the other?

Well, this type of talk leads us nowhere. However, I am sure that it would not be wise of me to talk authoritatively on wisdom from here; for the subject is complex and complicated. But then, it might be intelligent to put in a few words of wisdom here.

Technically speaking, intelligence is a word that can be used to describe a property of mind, which encases our capacity to reason, plan, solve problems, think, understand, use language, and also to learn.

Now where does wisdom lie? Well, it is also very much connected to intelligence, and in many ways, the term may overlap with intelligence and also with such other things as perceptiveness, spirituality, and even our own cunningness.

Yet, it has been said that wisdom is a distinct term and not a composite of all these terms.

But then, apart from being just a part or content of intelligence, wisdom also is our knowledge of what is right or true, connected to our capacity for judicious actions, discernment and insight. In that case, it is not just knowledge, but its application to live a good and virtuous life. Thus being wise means an innate ability to choose between different options, based on social ethical principles.

Well, all this brings us back to what I would rather be? Well, I should be intelligent enough to choose to be wise. Or is it the other way round?

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