by clicking the "Next" arrow.
by clicking on the page.
the page around when zoomed in by dragging it.
the zoom using the slider when zoomed-in.
by clicking on the zoomed-in page.
by entering text in the search field, and select "This Issue" or "All Issues"
by clicking on thumbnails to select pages, and then press the print button.
displays sections with thumbnails and descriptions.
displays a slider of thumbnails. Click on a page to jump.
allows you to browse the full archive.
about your subscription?
Mindful : February 2014
28 mindful February 2014 mind/body research into big-C creativity has taken off. This work has already refuted two popular miscon- ceptions about creativity. First, the idea that the right bra in innovates and the left bra in calculates has been aba ndoned. We now know that the right and left hemi- spheres are equally involved in most creative tasks. Sec- ond, there is no special cre- ativity hot spot in the brain— the same areas that are active in everyday thinking, planning, a nd understa nding also pitch in to come up with original insights. And insight is the right word when it comes to creativity. Through case studies of doz- ens of writers, Andreasen has shown that exceptiona lly cre- ative people work their magic through flashes of insight, not analytic thinking. She has also found that creativity rises as intelligence heads into above-average levels, a lthough itseemstopeakatanIQof around 120. Above-average intelligence results in g reat creativity because the raw materials of creativity a re dispa rate facts a nd thoughts, which the brain assembles into novel combinations. The more mental building blocks a brain can contain and assemble, the greater the cha nce of a novel combination—much as having lots of different Lego pieces, not just four-dot bricks, g ives you a better shot at creating castles and pirates and ferris wheels. Intelligence also enables you to tell the difference between an idea for, say, mustard-stuffed cupcakes and one for uniform potato chips sold in a can. The first is just gross; the second launched a zillion Pringles. Chemist Linus Pauling, who won two Nobel prizes, celebrated the intellect’s capacity to handle a blizzard of ideas and yet pick out the good ones. “ You aren’t going to have good ideas,” he said, “unless you have lots of ideas and some sort of princi- ple of selection.” The math- ematician Henri Poincaré believed that the mass of ideas that springs from the creative mind “collide until pairs inter- locked, so to speak, making a stable combination.” Crucially, although intelligence is necessar y for creativity, it is not sufficient. In fact, when the scientific study of creativity got going in the 1950s and 1960s, the key question was whether creativity was essentially the same as intelligence. The demonstration that the two are different mental and neurological processes—and therefore that nurturing intel- ligence would not inevitably encourage creativity—estab- lished the study of creativity as a distinct scientific field. Creativity, according to Mark Runco, professor of creativity studies at the University of Georgia and founder of the Creativity Research Journal, is “not dependent on traditional intelligence.” That beca me evident in Andreasen’s finding that by IQs of 140 or so, creativity tails off. Why? Perhaps cre- ativity is handcuffed by the analytical ability that tends to accompa ny high IQs. Or perhaps people who ace IQ tests come up short on a pro- cess that Andreasen has iden- tified as key to creativity: an “Mental filters” screen thoughts, images, memories, and perceptions, allowing only some into conscious awareness. Creative people have leaky ones.