“Wisdom has built her house, she has carved out her seven pillars:”
The aim of this series is to present a non-cliche, non-religious point of view of wisdom. I do subscribe to some religious interpretations of the subjects addressed, but wish to here, only point out the common understanding of the principles.
“Those who know do not talk. Those who talk do not know. Keep your mouth closed… this therefore is the highest state of man.”
– Tao Te Ching 56
More harm is done to both reputation and relationships by my words more than any other thing I do. My first inclination should be quietness, calmness, and contemplation of the matter at hand. When I’m offended, hurt, or angry, I must keep my mouth shut, at least initially. Keeping the secrets and confidence placed on me, holding my thoughts and tongue, I protect myself and others. Talking about injustices done to me only keeps the hurt alive and fans the flames of anger. Quietness is a refuge, in contrast expressing my opinion at every turn is never necessary. There are times to express myself, but only when these conversations are governed by wisdom’s pillars. I must show restraint when my heart bursts to speak, when my stomach aches to exact verbal revenge on those who are against me, when my pride wants to tell everything I think I know. Holding my tongue and keeping knowledge and opinions to myself produces confidence and inspires the same in others around me. In quietness and confidence is my strength.