The smartest among us are not we who use quotes and references to prove our point but we who use logical reasoning to come up with new ideas. This episode explores intelligence, not as the ability to quote famous people but as the capacity to think critically, engage in original thought, and apply knowledge in diverse contexts.
Many individuals define intelligence as one’s ability to quote famous people or repeat facts. These same individuals quickly ask others for sources, although they will not check them themselves. They also tell others not to talk about things that they do not know, although they, themselves, are unfamiliar with the topic in question.
They refuse to accept anything that is not written in books or has not been said before. They usually shut down discussions because they do not know, are scared to contribute to the conversations, or simply are too lazy to learn new things.
Their attitude proves that school is the most effective instrument of manipulation the human spirit ever created. School, as we all know it, provides us with a narrow perception that disregards the multifaceted nature of intelligence and fails to capture the essence of true intellectual prowess. School teaches us not to take risks or to simply follow the steps of those who have already succeeded.
Imagine Satoshi Nakamoto telling these people he was creating a virtual currency and, more so, Alan Mathison Turing telling them he was building a computer that would be smarter than human intelligence. They would have called them crazy for dreaming of defying the pre-established structure of things.
Quoting famous people or citing sources is a surface-level display of data finding that does not measure deep comprehension or original thinking. Resuming intelligence to the above hampers creativity and a host of other cognitive skills that go beyond the act of memorization.
It is a myopic perspective that fails to capture the true essence of intellectual capacity. While these actions demonstrate knowledge, they overlook the crucial aspects of critical thinking, problem-solving, and creativity that are vital components of intelligence.
Moving forward, it is crucial to reimagine education and redefine how we measure intelligence. We must encourage students to think critically, embrace original thought, and apply knowledge in diverse contexts. By doing so, we can nurture the next generation of innovators, problem solvers, and compassionate leaders.
Bobb Rousseau, PhD