and Imagination: Part 1
and imagination are unique human gifts. We need to learn how to
use these gifts for purposes beneficial to humanity. With imagination
we can set goals that are not yet reality, we can imagine a better
future, we can conceive of ideals, we can find solutions to problems
that seem unsolvable, we can be creative, we can write poems and
music for celebration, we can inspire. Thinking is how we make
what we imagine happen - the means by which we make what we imagine
an influence in the material world to enhance physical survival.
Imagination and thought are two qualities that need to be used
in a balanced and healthy approach to life. Indeed, when they
are so used, they will prevent the misuse and perversion of each
philosopher Descartes stated "I think, therefore I am."
If thinking provided the only key to human identity, this would
be a simple formula for self-knowledge and self-actualization.
By thinking one may confirm one's individuality separate from
others, and, presumably, the more one is able to think, the more
fulfilled one may become. Morality based on thinking creates a
rational world view where rules that are logical insure one's
sense of security. The result? A legal and well-ordered system
with predictable limits and consequences, where survival is guaranteed.
world, however, is anything but well-ordered or predictable. When
it comes to the conflicting desires of people and of nations,
and the whims of nature, we live in a world where anything can
happen. A world governed strictly by reason doesn't provide the
flexibility for dealing with influences of love, hate, desire,
belief, fear, hope, prejudice, aesthetics, excitement, pleasure,
idealism or natural disasters. However, these have always been
the motivating forces that drive history. These forces present
the greatest challenges to human peace and progress. They are
not rational, but rather, are the stimuli of imagination.
with all its emotional appeal and language of dramatic symbolism
is at the root of human success and failure. Imagination, not
reason, is how people adapt and move forward in the face of adversity.
Imagination can also cause irreconcilable differences between
people's goals and perceptions.
has attempted to create order out of our unpredictable world using
non-rational or faith-based rules and social myths to insure security
and create peace. However, all too often, it's doctrines become
as inflexible as a legalistic code. Often religion is the cause
of conflicts when faced with other viewpoints and beliefs. Therefore,
codes of behavior based strictly on reason or on faith have not
succeeded in producing a world that is happy, peaceful, secure
healthy thought and imagination are used together we see the dynamic
results of human creativity, problem-solving, and openness to
new ideas. The threat to the world at present is the result of
people who fail to accept or find the common ground in diverse
viewpoints. The crises in politics and world affairs are the result
of people trying to force their ideas and beliefs on others because
it makes them feel secure and "right." The sad result
is that so many people live in fear, and human survival is endangered.
The inability to adapt is the cause for extinction of all biological
beings including human beings.
thought and imagination are not developed in a dynamic and healthy
way, they become the causes of manipulation and division. They
are used to justify behavior that is selfish and self-centered,
and hence, anti-survival. An unhealthy mind becomes calculating
and materialistic. An unhealthy imagination becomes the agent
of fear and self-righteousness. The result of an unhealthy mind
is greed, and the result of an unhealthy imagination is fanaticism.
This is the profile of our world today where unhappy and inhuman
conditions exist at the roots of human uncertainty and suffering.
month: How can we develop a healthy mind and a healthy
imagination so that they work together harmoniously to solve problems
and promote happiness, tolerance, freedom and universal well-being?