Crazy Wisdom

Joker Why So Serious

Originally posted as a response to @francisginter‘s giveaway of a Kindle Book Gift Certificate to “J.Bird’s Furnace”, a crazy wisdom poem for spiritual seekers and lovers of life.

When I see the words “crazy wisdom”, a lot of things pop up inside my mind in a… chaotic order — if that makes sense without creating a paradox, or at least not as great a paradox as the phrase:

I know that I know nothing.

Indeed, I don’t think we can talk about wisdom without hearing Socrates inside our heads. He was an example of how to, let’s say, balance what little wisdom we have: By neither underestimating nor overestimating it.

I believe by doing so a thirst remains to increase our knowledge and therefore become wiser, not to succumb to our puny existence as a speck of dust floating in the universe — as the nihilists would say. For, what use does a speck of dust have for knowledge?

Fortunately, we are not specks of dust. We constantly try to make sense out of our existence, through a myriad of moments of being and endless epiphanies. We have a thirst for truths. An unquenchable thirst for knowledge and by extension, wisdom, which can — and most likely will — spin out of control.

Which brings us to crazy wisdom.

Unlike Buddha, who was “crazy” — in his own way — for wisdom but had a clear vision of attaining enlightenment, we are much more chaotic. Of course, we too try different things, trying to become more knowledgeable and wiser in each — just like Buddha, who tried many different teachers and methods before “finding” the Noble Eightfold Path. But our wisdom in these “things” is trivial and superficial at best, like for example, being aware of cognitive biases while arguing with someone, why this or that religion is bad, why you shouldn’t wear white socks with black shoes, etc.

This superficiality is more obtrusive in the age of twitter, where a lot of people claim to know everything about a vast array of topics just because they’ve read Wikipedia. Claiming that one is wise and therefore fit to teach one’s followers, while one has barely scratched the surface, is nothing short of crazy.

Last but not least, the word “crazy” makes me think of Heath Ledger’s Joker — in a way, he’s wise too. So to me, “crazy” can also mean “fun”. Hence, “crazy wisdom” is knowing when to be serious but more importantly, when to have fun and not take everything too seriously. As Heath Ledger’s Joker said:

“Why so serious?”

Sky Sairyou
Dec 28, 2012, 00:17 AM
Antwerp, Belgium


4 thoughts on “Crazy Wisdom

  1. Daniel, a long time coming…I never would have expected anyone to bring in Heath Ledger’s Joker! That is excellent, as it brings in the dark side in a way I hadn’t considered….I like what you said in your paragraph starting with Buddha. It’s like listening to lecturer go on and on about how simplicity and silence is key to opening up –just complicating the matter. I doubt very much Buddha was a rambler. He probably was more likely to say to his students, “sit on the ground and and be quiet.” I’ve read his precepts, and there are only a few, but they are all enveloping in scope….somewhere in the Bible, which I’ve never actually read, there is this line: “For in much wisdom is much vexation, and he who increases knowledge increases sorrow.” I think that’s similar to the notion (about the path): “Better not to start; once started, better to finish.”… In my own life I’ve had little tastes which stay with me as reminders, and goals, while at the same time sometimes causing me self-irritation for having wasted so much time…. If there is such a thing as “the human condition” I believe you’ve summed it up quite well…. It’s funny but if I had to tick a box, say in a survey or election, of what religion I am, I would be have to check “Other”. As I wrote in “J-Bird’ Furnace”, Life is my real teacher. How can anything exist that isn’t part of Life, and I can learn from anything and everything…You sound like a right on dude…keep up the good work!… Francis

    • Hi Francis! Thank you for the thoughtful comment. I agree with you that we can learn from anything and everything. I’ve read a little bit of “J-Bird’s Furnace” and I like what I see so far; you too seem to be well-read. 😉

      I’m afraid I’ll have to keep you waiting a while longer for that Amazon review though, because at the moment capitalism seems to be draining everything out of me — creativity included, and worst of all, time.

      • No worries Daniel. I understand. For me its not capitalism, it’s two small kids. Being a parent is by far the hardest thing I’ve ever done! Look forward to your comments….Francis

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