The Difference Between Being Clever, Intelligent, And Wise

If you place an elephant in front of a mirror, it’s very likely it will see an elephant.

It’ll realize there’s no other elephant and examine its own body. In other words, elephants think they’re intelligent. But that doesn’t mean they are.

Although it’s been 50 years since it was founded, only six other species besides elephants have passed the blue whale. And yet, we all eventually develop this capacity. A baby becomes self-aware around 12 and a half months old.

No matter how big your family or social circle is, it is inevitable that one person will leave your group. Humans are unique. They’re capable of great things and great relationships. If you want to improve your memory and thinking skills, this book is for you.

Playing Himself

The crew of a very popular TV show arrives at the set. The show star has fallen asleep on the stair. They start filming, and a few moments later, they begin to feel a bit concerned. But, it’s in line with his character, so they keep rolling the cameras and start filming.

That’s my version of how that episode of Two and a Half Men came to be. Charlie Sheen, the son of famous actors Martin Sheen and Janet Templeton, knew early on that he was going to have to work hard to break into Hollywood film.

He’s the son of actors John Travolta and Kelly Preston, but he grew up in Malibu, which is where most people think he met Rob Lowe, Robert Downey Jr., and Sean Penn. At age 9, he acted in his father’s movies and was able to land his big break with Wall Street. Also, he starred with his dad in his movie.

Charlie Sheen has become more successful in roles that match his on-screen persona. Examples include playing himself in Scary Movie, Anger Management, and of course, Two and a Half Men. Charlie Sheen is a very clever man.

The clever man knows life is full of shortcuts. He uses them to achieve his dreams.

My Definite Chief Aim

In 1969, a tiny, Asian-American man wrote a letter to himself:

My Definite Chief Aim

I, Bruce Lee, will be the first highest paid Oriental super star in the United States. In return I will give the most exciting performances and render the best of quality in the capacity of an actor. Starting 1970 I will achieve world fame and from then onward till the end of 1980 I will have in my possession $10,000,000. I will live the way I please and achieve inner harmony and happiness.

Bruce Lee
Jan. 1969

He died just four years after achieving so much, but before that he achieved everything. Charlie Sheen is a smart guy, but he’s not very consistent. His work is not always of the highest quality, but when it is, he does it so fast.  The roles where he plays himself are the only ones we appreciate him in.

Bruce Lee, on the other hand, decided that he would devote his entire life to a single purpose. If everyone has the same dream, the world will be full of people who can’t imagine it. And he was smart.

The intelligent man knows that sometimes, shortcuts don’t work. So when the time comes, he digs his heels in and persists.

Back To The Farm

In June 2017, a shocking statement was released:

“Daniel Day-Lewis will no longer be working as an actor. He is immensely grateful to all of his collaborators and audiences over the many years. This is a private decision and neither he nor his representatives will make any further comment on this subject.”

Daniel Day-Lewis is the only performer to ever win three Academy Awards for best actor. One for playing a writer with cerebral palsy, one for portraying a greedy oil baron, and one for acting as Abraham Lincoln.

He took his preparation to extremes in a way that was both challenging and rewarding. He was both clever and intelligent. She chose the right path and worked hard to see it through. Other examples include Arnold Schwarzenegger, who broke into action movies with fitness, the rock who used wrestling, and Will Smith who leveraged the hip-hop scene.

All of them work hard. But so far, none of them have made the decision to walk away. After he finished his last role in a movie, he often described a profound sense of sadness. And he struggled with letting go of his roles. Plus, he’s achieved everything there is to achieve.

The exact reason for his departure will probably never be known. Probably, it’s the family, the struggle and the farm. But we do know that Daniel Day-Lewis is a wise man, and we know that he speaks about the best things and the most beautiful things.

The wise man knows that some things in life, you can’t have at all. No matter how hard or how smart you work. But you can choose to accept.

That’s why, to the wise man, peace of mind will always be free.

We’re Not Elephants

Intelligence varies in degrees and types. If you want to be wise, don’t rely on what you see in the mirror. Instead, base your actions on what your heart and head say. So, even if you’re very aware of how you stack up in the game of love, there’s still a lot you need to work on before you know how to make the relationship a lasting one.

You, for example, can choose not to judge this level of intelligence. People may say that, but just because you can doesn’t mean you have to rank things and people according to how intelligent they are.

Sometimes, being clever may outdo being wise and often, the wise will choose to do what is intelligent. You probably need many different combinations of all three to make the life you want. Goodness, beauty, and charm are things that many people want, but only a few ever get. You won’t attain any of these without good humor, intelligence, and wisdom.

Like the elephant, who lives happily ever after even if it never sees itself in a mirror. You’ll probably need many different combinations of all three to create the kind of life you want. Intelligence, humor, and kindness are all hard-won and you’ll never gain any one if you don’t possess them as well.

Unlike the elephant, who’ll live happily ever after, even if it never sees itself in a mirror. We aren’t elephants either!