Adversity, Conflict, Wisdom

Brady, M., Ardelt, M., Plews-Ogan, M., & Pope, S. (2019). Adversity, Conflict, Wisdom. The Journal of Value Inquiry, 1-3.

Excerpt: Suppose that experience is central to the development of wisdom. Here we might ask two questions:

1. What is unique about adversity as a type of experience in the promotion of wisdom?

2. What are the personality characteristics and social conditions that promote wis-dom following adversity?

Adversity involves a particular kind of lack or loss of control over our lives. It results from a challenge to our values and concerns. But such a challenge can be positively correlated with growth of wisdom along two dimensions. First, a chal- lenge to our values and concerns focuses attention on these, motivates reflection upon them, and, in doing so, can deepen our understanding of what matters to us and why. Faced with adversity in our career, for example, we might come to reexamine and re-assess the point or purpose of our career path, coming to see aca- demia in a new light, as something that is worth pursuing, or as something that we should ultimately give up. In this way, adversity generates a deeper perspective on the values that our career is supposed to embody. John Stuart Mill, in On Liberty, famously argues for the importance of conflicting views, of the devil’s advocate, so that our beliefs, and our reasons for our beliefs, remain at the forefront of our minds, and do not descend into mere dogma. Conflict, thought Mill, is needed for the most valuable grasping of truth, which is an element of theoretical wisdom. But the point can be extended to encompass adversity in general: conflict and loss of control can be a test for our values across the board.

Read the article: Brady, M., Ardelt, M., Plews-Ogan, M., & Pope, S. (2019). Adversity, conflict, wisdom. The Journal of Value Inquiry, 1-3.

(Something interesting I found)Posted:Oct 01 2019, 12:00 AM by jlmatelski
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