Document Type : Scientific Research Manuscript


1 PhD Candidate of Educational Psychology, Faculty of Psychology and Education, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran

2 Assistant Professor of Educational Psychology, Faculty of Psychology and Education, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran

3 Associate Professor of Educational Psychology, Faculty of Psychology and Education, Shahid Beheshti University, Tehran, Iran


The purpose of this qualitative study was to investigate, explore and explain the characteristics, features and components attributed to the notion of wisdom in Iran. To this end, the explicit theory of wisdom, i.e. individuals’ perceptions of wisdom, was used. All above-20 years old Iranians comprised the population of the study. Following purposeful and convenience sampling procedures, 328 Iranians (134 males and 194 females) coming from different ethnic backgrounds (Persians, Azerbaijani Turks, Kurds, Arabs, the Turkmen, Lurs and the Baluch) were selected and required to answer a researcher-developed open-ended questionnaire followed by content analysis of data. Findings suggested/indicated that for %94.2 of the participants, exemplars of wise people are male with an average age of 62.9. Also, 27.9%, 20.1%, 19.15% and 12.6% of wisdom exemplars came from religious figures/leaders, people-around-me, experts/specialists and social-political figures respectively. Five main/major categories/themes of wisdom were ‘intellectuality’, ‘morality’, ‘civilization’, ‘performance’ and ‘virtue/spirituality’. Further analyses of components and categories revealed that of all characteristics/features attributed to wisdom, %37.05 were associated with intellectuality, %26.5 with performance, %18.6 with morality, %8.01 with civilization and %4.4 with spirituality. Findings are used to argue that ‘wisdom’ in Iranian society and for Iranians in general is a hybrid/combination of Western (rooted in cognition and intellectuality) and Eastern (based on socio-affective propositions and spirituality) doctrines of wisdom.


Main Subjects

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