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Posted on 2011.01.07 at 08:45


michelle1963 at 2011-01-07 16:37 (UTC) (Link)
Intelligence. Really such an ill-defined concept, although we all use it as if there is an agreed definition. Sure we can recognize the periphery, and most people are referring to people who have one or more of the following: the ability to learn new information quickly, retain well the information they do learn, and/or the gift of analysis.

The general concept thrown around so randomly in conversation leaves out so much. First, there is the emotional component. I think we've all met smart people (as defined above) who had the temperament of a five year old. Are they smart? In some ways perhaps. But if they apply their gifts in an emotionally immature way, then they have nothing and offer nothing of any worth.

How many "smart" people lack curiosity? As you touched on, they've simply stopped thinking. Or perhaps they never did, serving only as a vessel to absorb facts and nothing else. Yes, they may set the standard on tests that measure this type of intelligence, but that is all.

A really obscure part of intelligence, is focusing one's energy. What if a person has intelligence, emotional maturity, and curiosity in spades, but can't get it together to focus their gifts?

To challenge one's core beliefs, it is necessary to have all the components--intelligence, emotional maturity, curiosity, and focus.

A rare combination indeed.

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