To be wise is to be awake. Waking up and wisdom are the same thing. Grasping that makes me more effective at gaining the thing they both are. No one can give me wisdom, I have to earn my own by paying attention. No one can wake me up, that's my job. I couldn't wake up until I shook off all external authority and became my own master; that set wisdom free in me.
Years ago, wisdom gave me a koan: “Time is not what you think it is.” Then another: “Death is never a bad thing.” With those as a starting point, wisdom guided me to a life anchored in five dimensions. Wisdom aka wakefulness aka depth is the fifth.
The big picture is frozen, that's the nature of it: this moment is always this moment. The world is exactly like this every time I live this moment. So the news is not really news, it's this way every time. But it's news to me; memories all die with the body. Wisdom doesn't die: with every bit of waking up I'm more awake for good.
Death is neutral, a reset: my life starts over. If I got no wiser by living, I live the same life again. If I woke up even a little, I'm a more awake person; that changes how I live. Being wiser, I engage the world more deeply, so I keep waking up. Wiser or not, my choices & actions are self-perpetuating. I keep waking up or I don't; my choice.
When wisdom's in charge, thinking becomes a valuable tool. When thinking's in charge, I'm asleep and wisdom's absent.
Until I began waking up, thinking was the architect of my misery, the barrier between me and the rich, satisfying life I longed for. My life was mental: an unsatisfying snarl of obsessions, ideas, categories, stories, abstractions, hopes, fears, and negative imaginings. That's all bullshit; none of it exists. Waking up begins when I stop living mind-first and surrender to wisdom.
When I live mind-first, I lavish my attention on mental crap. That makes me miss obvious cues, stray off course, trip over shit. I'm not even competent to walk down the sidewalk while living mind-first. Surrendering to wisdom wakes me up, makes me fluid, adaptable, attentive; ready to get deeper, wiser. Thinking keeps me stuck in the mucky shallows of four dimensions.
The first koan wisdom gave me was “I am the world.” I needed a few years with the other two before it began to make sense. All I can know of the world is what my senses grasp directly. Everything else is just hearsay, mental figments. If I wake up and engage the world deeply, I change myself; that changes my experience. Only wisdom can change the world.