The power of creativity (Robinson & Aronica, 2009)

12 October 2010

Imagination is not the same as creativity. Creativity takes the process of imagination to another level. My definition of creativity is “the process of having original ideas that have value.” Imagination can be entirely internal. You could be imaginative all day long without anyone noticing. But you would never say that someone was creative if that person never did anything. To be creative you actually have to do something. It involves putting your imagination to work to make something new, to come up with new solutions to problems, even to think of new problems or questions.

You can think of creativity as applied imagination.

(Robinson & Aronica 2009, p. 67)

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The power of imagination (Robinson & Aronica, 2009)

12 October 2010

My initial definition of imagination is “the power to bring to mind things that are not present to our senses.”

Your respons to this might very well be, “Duh.” That would be an appropriate response, but it helps make a critical point – that perhaps more than any other capacity, imagination is the one we take for granted most. This is unfortunate because imagination is vitally important to our lives. Through imagination, we can visit the pas, contemplate the present, and anticipate the future. We can also do something else of profound and unique significance. We can create.

Through imagination, we not only bring to mind things that we have experienced but things that we have never experienced. We can conjecture, we can hypothesize, we can speculate, and we can suppose. In a word, we can be imaginative. As soon as we have the power to release our minds from the immediate here and now, in a sense we are free. We are free to revisit the past, free to reframe the present, and free to anticipate a whole range of possible futures. Imagination is the foundation of everything that is uniquely and distinctively human. It is the basis of language, the arts, the sciences, systems of philosophy, and all the vast intricacies of human culture.

(Robinson & Aronica, 2009, p. 59)


From superstition to science (Robinson & Aronica, 2009)

12 October 2010

People will pride themselves on being “down to earth” and “realistic” and deride those who “have their heads in the clouds.” And yet, far more than any other power, imagination is what sets human beings apart from every other species on earth.

Imagination underpins every uniquely human achievement. Imagination led us from caves to cities, from bone clubs to golf clubs, from carrion to cuisine, and from superstition to science.

(Robinson & Aronica, 2009, p. 57)