Intelligence vs. Wisdom; Physicist vs. Philosopher; Shiny Bicycle vs. Quantum Foam

It occurred to me once that, if monks in a Buddhist monastery were creating Dungeons & Dragons characters, is it possible they would NOT have to ask the Dungeon Master what Wisdom is? God knows that nerds getting down to same in our Western, indentured-servitude, conspicuous-consumption drone matrix ALWAYS ask! They, however, never need to ask what Intelligence is. What follows are my thoughts as to why this is the case.

Check this out and come back.


For those who don’t want to click off — it talks about quantum foam and how — the further down you go (size-wise) the more crazy shit gets.

Many have had the experience or feeling of oscillating between large and small: the sensation that you are suddenly enormous and planet or universe sized — then atom or quark sized, a kind of disorienting weaoh-weaoh-weaoh-weaoh, big-small-big-small.

Having experienced this in meditation, I have decided to investigate it. Here is what I have found.  Once you acclimatize to the sensation, you realize it is not oscillation between big and small, it is actually oscillation between small and nothingness!

Or rather, more accurately, between chaos and void (I say void because, in my estimation, there is no such thing as order — only absence of chaos).

In our lives, there is only the imposition of perceived order (delusion really) upon chaos by a consciousness, which is generally unwilling to embrace the inherently chaotic nature of reality. And so, suffering (as the word is used in Buddhist terms, or in any other terms really) is just the inability or unwillingness of consciousness to accept the true nature of reality. Put another way, it is the pain incurred by wanting things to impossibly be some way other than the way they are or the only way they can possibly be!

“What has this to do with intelligence and wisdom?” the Dungeon Masters asks. I’m getting there.

We must begin with the understanding that we live in a society that values intelligence over wisdom: engineering over poetry for example (catastrophically so, in fact — but this is another discussion). The mathematician/scientist/physicist is held in much higher esteem than the philosopher/poet/priest. This because the first facilitates the twin delusions of quantification as control and egoic alienation from other that fuel consumption driven economic growth, and the latter undermines that paradigm. But this too is another discussion.

Suffice it to say — that, at least in systemic terms, the physicist is revered and the philosopher is diminished. Intelligence is king. Wisdom is sandal-wearing hippy clown.

Enough context then, here we go…

Intelligence is the faculty by which one OUTWARDLY (exoterically) measures, labels, and correlates arbitrarily designated variables in a reality demarcated by consciousness.

Wisdom is the faculty by which one INWARDLY (esoterically) directly experiences a reality un-demarcated by consciousness.

Having defined the terms, let’s put them in context using the experience of meditating and directly experiencing the fundamental chaos characterized by the quantum foam situation we discussed previously.

The scientist — who is intelligent — using measurement, (mathematics) theoretically observes the quantum foam as he constantly pushes to further the edge of how far OUT he can go in the quest to understand the nature of reality.

The philosopher — who is wise — using meditation (the obliteration of constructs such as mathematics), experiences the quantum foam (if you must call it something, sheesh!), as he pushes to further the edge of how far IN he can go.

Certainly, there is a longer conversation to be had here, but this is a start.

And one last point to ponder.

Intelligence has not risen to primacy as our modality of choice merely because it facilitates our ability to manipulate our environment (and certainly, to be manipulated as well). It has allure in that it empowers one to more readily share experiences using mechanisms such as words and numbers with another person or with all other people. Intelligence can be KNOWN, and so recorded and easily conveyed from one conscious entity to another.

The means of sharing the fruits of wisdom are not readily shareable. Approximations of direct inner experience rendered through art, literature, poetry, music are the best one can do. The fruits of wisdom can only, ever be FELT.

In a nutshell then, the spoils of our outer (exoteric) expeditions (endeavours of intelligence) can be more easily conveyed from one person to another. The spoils of our inner (esoteric) expeditions (endeaovours of wisdom), not so much.

Read Andy Crowley, Sole Sorcerer of Sanctuary. (I dare say it is an attempt to render the fruits of endeavours of wisdom)

Rock n’ scroll!

Cosmic Showdown at the Pub at the Mall

The sugar-high Nick Morrison felt as he walked through the mall with Deb Holcroft began crashing just before he rounded the corner into the entrance of the Tudor Arms. The tiny acorn in his memory that was the knowledge that Jason, J.R, Bill, Ian, Dave, and Dave went to the Arms, every Saturday to get illegal beers from Garedog Murphy exploded in an instant into his conscious mind like a towering century-old oak.

It stopped him short in the wide entrance to the mall’s pub. I’m an idiot, he thought. Deb hadn’t noticed he’d stopped. She was running to the table where Dave O’Finnegan beckoned to her. Nick noticed two empty glasses in front of O’Finnegan. Double rye and gingers no doubt. The rest had steins of beer. He gritted his teeth and followed Deb in.

“There he is!” O’Finnegan, as per usual, was far louder than he needed to be. Why did everything the guy said have to be burdened with eight layers of meaning — seven of them (or more) being insults of one form or another. Nick forced a smile. Then he saw Dave move over in the bench and pat the seat as an invitation for Deb to sit down. NO! Nick’s mind lurched. Grabbing Deb’s hand he pulled her back from taking the sit. Every eye at the table, Deb’s included, were on Nick hand holding Deb’s.

Realizing his emotions had, yet again, gotten out in front of his thoughts, Nick froze. Deb’s eyes were wide with surprise — what the Hell has gotten into Nick? Remembering she still held the new employee information from Denim Nexus in her hand, her quick mind sprung into action.

“For some reason, Dostoyevsky here wants me to read his hobbit essay,” She shook her papers to sell the deception and, reversing the grip Nick had on her, she yanked him away from his friends toward a table for two.

Nick was awestruck, as much by his serial stupidity today, as he was by Deb’s quick thinking.

She lunged for the drink menu before Nick had even settled into his seat. “What the Hell is up with you?” she whispered while pretending to read the menu and casting a careful glance at the table from which they had just escaped. She was relieved to see that any interest in them had already passed.

“I don’t know?” Nick was genuinely confused. He didn’t know how to think his way through how he was suddenly feeling about Deb. “The guys are just on my nerves lately.”

“You really aren’t yourself,” Deb reached over and took Nick’s hands in hers. The embarrassment of before was gone. The banshee’s message that Nick would die had returned to her thoughts. In this moment it didn’t even matter that Andy had said it was just a dream.

“I have a lot going on, Deb. School, hockey, my parents –,” he started looking for Garedog, he wanted a beer. Then, not really knowing why, he added, ” — all the bullshit with the Crowley’s.” Deb let go of his hands and crossed her arms to hug herself. She looked down and Nick immediately regretted bringing up Andy’s parents. He should have known it would make her sad.

“Morison!” Garedog Murphy had appeared. His perpetually smiling face and blazing rosy cheeks were a welcome relief in that dark moment. Under the friendly face an enormous muscled frame strained against last year’s Quinte Saints Rugby jersey. Nick always thought he looked the part of medieval tavern owner with no patience for tomfoolery — the kind who had no need of hired muscle to keep patrons in line. Nick pictured him with robust inn-keeper lamb chops — a far cry from Garedog’s pencil-thin teenage attempt at a moustache.

“Two steins of Canadian coming right up. Nick is paying or you don’t get ’em. Isn’t that right, Deb?” Somehow his smile grew even more for her. The smile she gave him back melted Nick’s heart.

How had I not seen it before? But he caught himself then. Would he unnerve her if too much came too fast? They had been friends forever. His reason caught up and overtook with his passion for perhaps the first time that day. Time to cool it down and back it off.

“Ruby has too much going on. My parents are worried about her.” Andy was the last thing Nick wanted to talk about but he had brought up the Crowley’s and needed to follow through.

“If anyone has their shit together though, it’s her,” Deb said. She had always looked up to Ruby. Nick had too. “And Andy think about how Andy quit drinking and smoking. He reads more than anyone I know — ” she paused. “It’s almost like his dad and mom leaving them was… good for him.”

How had Andy come up? Nick was fuming. He needed to change the topic


Nick? She was genuinely curious.

Would it be cool if I came with you and your friends to Club Cedars on Friday?

Deb’s head snapped back. Her eyes were wide. Friday was D&D night?

“Here’s your beers!” Garedog’s massive cudgel hands effortlessly tossed the steins on to the table without spilling a drop. He locked his eyes on Nick’s — they had the secret communication powers unique to teammates who have won a football championship together. The barkeep snapped his head sideways toward the wide pub entrance. “And please let me know if Sweetie Pie over there gives anyone a hard time.” — Sweetie Pie was the name they had for a shared adversary. Scott Pierre darkened the entrance way. He did not look himself. Was Nick seeing things or were the creep’s narrow eyes glowing an amber hue?

“You know we can’t do this here, Prince Twain!” Every eye in the Tudor Arms turned then to the source of the booming, otherworldly voice. Dave O’Finnegan had stood to his full height and strode with valorous purpose toward Scott St. Pierre. There was no mistaking that O’Finnegan’s eyes roared with flaming amethyst light. Though none their knew this was the light of Limbo, realm between realms.

“No. Not now, Banjoman,” the whisper came from Scott St. Pierre, but it was not his voice it was a strange mix of a proper Queen’s English accent and a Midwestern American twang, and it had an echosome, metallic tinge.

Then, “WOAH, WOAH, WOAH,” drowned out both the imposing alien voices.

It was Andy Crowley. His shoelaces — as was typical — flew every which way as he skidded around the corner into the pub.

Read Andy Crowley Sole Sorcerer of Sanctuary

The soul business is booming…


There is but one mind in all existence: a single consciousness. Most call it the All. Sometimes, it’s called God. One day, out of boredom more than anything else, the All decided to divide itself up and forget that it had divided itself up. These parts are what we call souls. You have one. These souls are born over and over again as they figure out (more like remember really) that they are actually the All.

But in between lives, souls are bottled by reapers for the thriving inter-dimensional soul trade. This is because releasing a bottled soul to reincarnate punches a hole in spacetime, empowering sorcerers’ minds to access probability fields and rejig reality to their liking.

And so, because souls are the fuel of magic, the soul trade drives the economy of the planes and the soul trading houses vie for power.

You shouldn’t feel stupid for not knowing this, because, you see, you live in the one place in all reality where magic doesn’t work. We call it Earth. But in the sorcerous bedlam of the wider, wilder multiverse just beyond the doorstep of our perception, it’s called by another name…

… Sanctuary.

His dad has stockbrokered himself into a sanitarium; his mom has ODed on evangelism; and his friends are starting to want to go to the mall more than they want to play D&D.

Andy Crowley is getting desperate.

Under the circumstances, his aspiration to become the weird outer space wizard you see airbrushed on the side of a van shouldn’t come as a surprise.

His success in that aspiration, however, is something else altogether.

And when it happens on the one world in the multiverse where magic isn’t even supposed to be possible, well, let’s just say all Hell (not to mention Heaven, Hades, Helheim, Heliopolis, and other assorted soul-trading houses) is about to break loose.

Read Andy Crowley, Sole Sorcerer of Sanctuary