I was watching a TED talk by Barry Schwartz. His talk was called, “The Real Crisis? We Stopped Being Wise” In his talk, Schwartz dissociates “wisdom” from the idea of ‘being smart’ and defines ‘practical wisdom’ as the ability to see the right thing and the will to do it. He argues that this ability to see right and then do it for no other reason than it IS right, will help to re-build our world. We live in a time when views about aid to the developing world raise strong emotions and arguments. It is by no means clear that aid is “the right thing” or that it is always done for “the right reasons” or that its effects are good for the people it is intended to help. The COINS Foundation has some pretty strong reservations about a lot of aid. Just today, the Archbishop of Canterbury called on Anglicans to “pray, fast and give” to highlight Zimbabwe’s slide toward starvation. Dr Williams and the Archbishop of York, John Sentamu said people should give now rather than wait for a political solution. – I was prompted to hope that this, perhaps outmoded response to the troubles of the world, would nonetheless deliver a healthy dose of ‘practical wisdom’.