sexta-feira, 12 de fevereiro de 2016


Out in the open Wisdom calls aloud,
she raises her voice in the public square.
Proverbs 1:20

Folly is an unruly woman;
she is simple and knows nothing.
Proverbs 9:13
(Read Proverbs 1.20-25: 9.13-18 – NIV

Wisdom in the Book of Proverbs is given a feminine personality. Some translators lay hold of the Greek word for "wisdom" and translate it as "Sofia", a proper name. In Proverbs she speaks for herself:

“The Lord brought me forth as the first of his works, before his deeds of old; I was formed long ages ago, at the very beginning, when the world came to be. When there were no watery depths, I was given birth, when there were no springs overflowing with water; before the mountains were settled in place, before the hills, I was given birth, before he made the world or its fields or any of the dust of the earth. I was there when he set the heavens in place, when he marked out the horizon on the face of the deep, when he established the clouds above and fixed securely the fountains of the deep, when he gave the sea its boundary so the waters would not overstep his command, and when he marked out the foundations of the earth. Then I was constantly at his side. was filled with delight day after day, rejoicing always in his presence, rejoicing in his whole world and delighting in mankind. (Proverbs 8.22-31).

Mother Wisdom presents herself not as a goddess but as the feminine presence in creation. God was the father and she was the mother, the feminine face of the Creator. She was the architect. Nothing was done without her presence. Her guidance built lives, families, tribes and societies, strong and happy. Those who follow her become sources of life and blessing, strengthening and continuing the work of the Creator. Those who despise her go to destruction, taking others along with them.

But Mother Wisdom has a rival, Madam Folly who is attractive and has a seductive voice. Her speech is contrary to that of Mother Wisdom. "Stolen water is better; stolen bread is tastier" says Madam Folly and justifies her arguments! She says that we live in a cruel world and we do not know about tomorrow. Existence is a struggle for survival for all of us. The smartest take the cake and fools get the leftovers. Happiness is getting your piece at all costs and let others fend for themselves.

Madam Folly is endangering the house that Mother Wisdom built. She no longer sits at the door of her house and calls to those who are passing. She walks the streets, creating visual pollution with posters and billboards, encouraging consumerism and enters into homes and speaks enthusiastically through television sets and the pages of magazines and newspapers. Her message is the attraction of physical beauty and the glory of brand names. She says that happiness is to be elegant and have prestige and wealth. Ethical and moral factors are ignored when convenient. TO HAVE has more value than TO BE. She is saturating our culture.

The compulsion to possess power and things is leading us to the exploitation of each other and all of creation. The followers of the philosophy of Madam Folly are depleting human and natural resources and polluting the soil, air and water. Forests are disappearing from the earth and the fish disappearing from the sea. This house, our home, that Mother Wisdom built, is being demolished before our eyes.

The voice of Mother Wisdom needs to abandon the temples and go to the streets and squares! It needs to go to all places where people gather and to shout loudly denouncing the folly of our materialism and selfishness that is driving the world to destruction. Mother Wisdom has no voice but our voice. Do we have the luxury of silence?


Out in the open wisdom calls aloud,
    she raises her voice in the public square;
on top of the wall[a] she cries out,
    at the city gate she makes her speech:
“How long will you who are simple love your simple ways?
    How long will mockers delight in mockery
    and fools hate knowledge?
Repent at my rebuke!
    Then I will pour out my thoughts to you,
    I will make known to you my teachings.
But since you refuse to listen when I call
    and no one pays attention when I stretch out my hand,
since you disregard all my advice
    and do not accept my rebuke,


Folly is an unruly woman;
    she is simple and knows nothing.
She sits at the door of her house,
    on a seat at the highest point of the city,
calling out to those who pass by,
    who go straight on their way,
     “Let all who are simple come to my house!”
To those who have no sense she says,
     “Stolen water is sweet;
    food eaten in secret is delicious!”
But little do they know that the dead are there,

    that her guests are deep in the realm of the dead.

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