The Fascinating Truth About Sophie and Phronie

My marketing director says this post will end my career.

Google hates headlines with word plays.

I’m writing it anyway. I’ve been wanting to share this with you ever since I first started writing my blog almost 2 years ago. It’s an intellectual concept, and one I happen to find practical and encouraging.

Sophie refers to sophia, the Greek word for wisdom. It’s also a lovely name for girls, and there’s even a Sophia Institute in Charleston. It has this erudite and Ralph Laurenesque ring to my ears.

However, the ancient Greeks made a distinction between sophia and phronesis. Sophia is generalized wisdom and phronesis is the application of wisdom to a particular situation. That word is commonly translated into English as prudence, which I think no longer works. Prudence sounds, well, prudish.

It’s unfortunate that the word phronesis sounds so awkward and geeky, compared to sophia. I bet you’ve never seen a Phronesis Institute. Or have you met a lovely girl named Phronesis?

But consider this, while a smart phone gives the user instant access to all the sophia in the world, only certain people can deliver phronesis.

Yep, you heard me.

Phronesis can’t be googled. Sophia can.

The longer you live on this planet, the more access to phronesis you have. And the more sophia that’s out there (that’s doctoral speak for TMI,) the more demand there is for phronesis.

That’s where your value lies, in your phronesis. It works for teachers, healers, therapists, artists, sales pros, almost any career you can think of.

Happy Friday!


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