Friday, November 10, 2006

Must Read: A Whack On The Side Of The Head

..i actually won this book from a class i enrolled at work. I got so much fun reading it that I vowed to myself from now on, I will be an advocate of creative thinking.=D..

Just like the author, let me begin this post by asking, "When was the last time you came up with a creative idea and what was it?"

I paused for a while and said to myself, "Gosh, I can't even remember when!"

Then I got startled when I came upon one section of the book where an interview was made a woman and she said:" Whenever we hire new people, we're not concerned with how intelligent or efficient they are. To me the important characteristics are their playfulness and intensity. When people have these two traits, they're enthusiastic - and these are the ones who generate new ideas."

Indeed, in this fast-paced world of ours, all of us have become creatures of habit when it comes to doing things that deviating from the normal may cause us prize like time and effort. But think about it, if we will not use our creative thinking capability of ours, what difference will each of us make?

The book offered a lot of tips in keeping our mental juices flowing. It's just a matter of doing something to the knowledge that is already stacked in our crania. One of those I want to apply is about play. True enough, "If mother is the invention of necessity, play is certainly the father." If we will unleash the child within us, we can generate a lot of ideas without worrying much about the rules, practicality or being wrong. This has a close connection with another tip mentioned in the book about putting on a fool's cap. I learned that in ancient times it was the fool's duty to whack the king's thinking out of habitual thought patterns. I liked it so much since this involves taking things lightly,laughing at crazy ideas and thinking if it's crazy enough. Ponder on this:

It's not so important to be serious as it is to be serious about the important things. The monkey wears an expression of seriousness that would do credit to any great scholar. But the monkey is serious because he itches. Haha!! =D

I also learned that the author got his inspiration in creative thinking from ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus. In the last part of the book, heenlisted Heraclitus' epigrams which he referred to as Ancient Whacks. It's already some sort of exercise for the readers to interpret since there are no right answers. This one's my favorite:

"When we're awake, there is one ordered universe, but in sleep each of us turns away from this world to one of our own."

The author interpreted this about paying attention to our dreams. According to him, dreams can be stimulant to our imagination. A dream can even be a solution to one of our current problem!

But if i was to interpret it, I will focus more on the term ordered. Meaning, when we are sleeping random thoughts flow in our head. We can dream of chaos, anarchy or anything that we're afraid to happen. There's more to elaborate on this one. I still have to figure out. After all, as Heraclitus put it, "You can't step into a river twice." Like a flowing river that constantly changes, his whack may have a different assumption at a different point in my life. ;)

Definitely recommended. How about you, what's your take on those whacks? Let me know, comments are open.

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