Re: Spectrum of Thought( was Imagination vs Critical thought)

Natasha V. More (
Thu, 19 Jun 1997 15:15:54 -0500

At 02:11 PM 6/19/97 -0700, Robin Hanson wrote:

>I addition to the variables of tired/not and smart/dumb, my model
>includes how much one cares about being accepted. Most smart people
>are ambitious, and won't generate or express ideas that would get them
>in trouble in the circles they care about. Some people don't care as
>much about this, and so are willing to express wilder ideas.

This is precisely a point which Abraham Maslow refers to in _Toward A
Psychology Of Being_. He states, and I'll paraphrase here, that if we
squelch our ideas for fear of seeming foolish or dumb, we could be
inhibiting a very important ingredient of our thinking process. This
ingredient I'll refer to as "raw creativity." It stems from the unconscious
mind and can be pretty creepy. It can be alarming, it can be scary. Yet,
if we inhibit ourselves, we just might be inhibiting an idea, once
developed, could help us in the future obtain far-reached inventions.

And, this is where wisdom of experience comes in. Smart people do say what's
on their mind because the developed sense of self-trust that the thinking
processes has become finely tuned. And, even if a slur of speech is
extracted that raises an eye-brow or two, so what! Many geniuses have
laughed at themselves for a foolish though. And, in doing so have gained
the respect from their associates.

You are correct in accessing that people who don't care what others think
are less troubled by reverberations. Yet, I tend to think that individuals
who don't care what other people think are defensive, and have a lot of
maturing to do.

>In areas where ideas are likely to be accepted, I tend to look to
>established authorities for the best ideas. But in areas where
>creative ideas are likely to get people into trouble, I look more
>toward the fringe, where the smart outcasts are mixed in with the

I look for established voices also. I also look for less known voices that
have wisdom. The "fringe" is not really a fringe by the people who are
sitting on the edge of the cliff. It's quite cosy there and plenty of room
to mingle about. It looks like the fringe 'cause it might be unfamiliar,
but its really quite ordinary.

Natasha Vita More [fka Nancie Clark]

"Treat your friends as you do your pictures, and place them in their best
Jennie Jerome Churchill

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