The Pagans define wisdom as “Good judgment, the ability to perceive people and situations correctly, deliberate about and decide on the correct response.”
For me, wisdom is discernment -- knowing when to speak the truth, when to remain silent, and understanding the consequences of your actions. In the Norse lore, Frigga, (the All-Mother), knew how Her Son Balder would die. Since it was his life to live, She remained silent. But, when Balder came to Her with his dream of death, Frigga panicked. She had all the beings of Midgard promise not to harm her son. Unfortunately, Loki (the Trickster) found a plant that Frigga forgot to ask – the mistletoe.
After learning about His Mother’s efforts, Balder thought that He was invulnerable. So He started a game, challenging everyone to try to kill Him. That is when Loki managed to get Balder killed with a mistletoe dart.
This tragedy arose from unwise actions of both Frigga and Balder. Frigga wanted to save Her Son’s life, but instead hastened his death. In addition, Balder acted foolishly for playing the “Try and Kill Me” game.
The gaining of wisdom is an ongoing process. If you do decide nothing, then you lack courage to be wise. First you must be foolish, learn from being foolish, and then you can be wise.