Life evolved from complex molecules to modern man and all that is within his society through feedback from the natural world. When things are done that work they get repeated, and things that don’t work very well are abandoned. Even when things work perfectly well they get abandoned sometimes, but the things which don’t work get abandonded more often. The end result of this process is that there is progress toward those things which work better.
How can we learn to identify those things and processes which will work best while expending the least amount of effort and blood? The ancient Greeks had the saying, “Know thyself,” which is good, but you are part of the world environment in which you live, so a better statement would be, “Pay attention to the world.” Knowing one’s self is good but it requires paying close attention to one’s self and when one is doing that, one’s own self is part of the world. Thus, paying attention is the first order of business.
Billions of years of evolution have built into us the ability to pay attention, and when reality is threatening to our physical well being our bodies react reflexively. When things are not so immediate we normally watch, interact and learn. This learning by the individual and society can be improved by honing our skills of observation, taking action based on observation, followed by learning, habits and wisdom to predict our future needs. As adults we all have a basis for further progress so I will assume a lot and move on.
We need to ask significant questions about the world about us, and these questions must be made in such a way that feedback may be had that we can understand and use. We approach our problems with a considerable amount of preexisting knowledge and habit which can either help or hinder us, probably both. We already have ideas about what the world is like, and that is what we have responded to, but to change we need a new viewing point from which to make new observations and discoveries. When young we are constantly thrust into new situations and are forced to learn, but as adults we think we know what we are doing and are hesitant to change behavior we know works. So, we need to intellectualize a problem before we can make much progress with it. Taking notes, just writing down the problem will help, and writing a blog post works even better because in an hour you can organize your thoughts, return to them as you write, and come back to them later and modify your ideas where you see possible improvements.
That process lets you develop an explicit development of an idea and then improve upon it. Having it written out also lets others read it and make comments, pick out various flaws and thus allow you to make improvements to your basic ideas and observations. Writing it out also makes it easy for you as well as others to make variations which may be applied to totally new and different situations. It is the evolution of an idea based on experience, not only your own experience but also the experience of others. The internet links all humanity together and thus provides an easy method for the evolution of all human thought to progress. There may be an end to this process, where everything worth knowing is readily available to everyone, and thus no more progress can be made in simple facts and the application of those facts. When humanity reaches that enlightened state, and much before too, the problem becomes the application of knowledge, or the wisdom to know the difference between the various choices and make the best decisions. That can be highly variable too, but there will be developed guidelines and general rules for application of wisdom itself.
There already exists an extensive repertoire of wisdom knowledge going all the way back to that available at the transition from spoken to written wisdom. My personal favorite was Sun Tzu because he clearly stated various situations, their primary qualities, and indicators of the behavior relative to their perceived problems. The future of wisdom will be based on the acquired wisdom of all humanity and may be available to everyone.
Heaven is when everyone is living at their highest level of wisdom.