Daily Wisdom

Meditations on the Book of Proverbs

13 Folly is an unruly woman;

   she is simple and knows nothing.


 The previous chapter presented wisdom as a lady, offering insight to all who will listen. Here we have her rival folly, also a woman, but that is where their similarities end. While wisdom is noble, folly is unruly; the virtues of wisdom are countered by the vices of folly. “She is simple and knows nothing,” but that does not hinder her work of temptation, which relies not on knowledge but on desire. And this is her great advantage, because desire is a powerful force, even for those who know wisdom.

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