What You Should Know About Creativity

What should you know about creativity? You know you can “Undo the Brainwashing,” that there are more than “3 Ways You Can Be More Creative,” and it’s possible to find “creativity in a time of chaos.” There’s much, much more to learn. Here are a few more inspirational thoughts.

What Is Creativity?

Creativity is the power to connect the seemingly unconnected. William Plomer

Creativity comes from a conflict of ideas. Donatella Versace

 “Creativity involves breaking out of expected patterns in order to look at things in a different way.” -Edward de Bono

Creativity is intelligence having fun. Albert Einstein

In the end, creativity isn’t just the things we choose to put in, it’s the things we choose to leave out. Austin Kleon

Creativity is the ability to introduce order into the randomness of nature. Eric Hoffer

Creativity is based on the belief that there’s no particular virtue in doing things they way they’ve always been done. Rudolph Flesch

Creativity is piercing the mundane to find the marvelous. Bill Moyers

Who Can Be Creative?

“The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul.” — Dieter F. Uchtdorf

“The creative adult is the child who survived.” — Ursula Leguin

In order to create you have to believe in your ability to do so and that often means excluding whole chunks of normal life, and, of course, pumping yourself up as much as possible as a way of keeping on. Sort of cheering for yourself in the great football stadium of life. T.C. Boyle

What You Should Know About Creativity

“The chief enemy of creativity is “good” sense.” — Pablo Picasso

Great things are not done by impulse, but a series of small things brought together. Vincent Van Gogh

Vulnerability is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change. Brené Brown

Create with the heart; build with the mind. Criss Jami

Great things are not accomplished by those who yield to trends and fads and popular opinion. Jack Kerouac

You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.  Maya Angelou

Art, freedom and creativity will change society faster than politics. Victor Pinchuk

Creativity is contagious. Pass it on. Albert Einstein


Do you have a favorite what you should know about creativity quote? Please, share it below. Or, share your own thoughts. What do you think everyone should know about creativity?

Take Another Peek at Paladina

It’s Friday and time for a Sneak Peek at Paladina, a work-in-progress. This story has been sitting on the shelf for a while. Inspired by UFOs and Greek mythology, I hope you enjoy this bit.

The Story Sentence

Paladina is a working title and probably won’t stick to this project. Its story sentence gives me direction and you a hint at what’s going on. (I discuss what a story sentence is in this article.

A protection specialist, sworn to defend a tiny Greek village, discovers they are pawns of treasure-hunting alien knights whose game pits her against her long-lost brother to save all of humanity. 

Location

The story takes place in Greece. The time period is current–or fairly current. This portion of the story takes place in a fictional mountain town in the Taygetos mountains. This mountain range contains the highest mountains in the Peloponnese peninsula.

Peak at Paladina

An apple of gold wrapped in barbed wire, sitting on a black cloth--could it be the apple referred to in the sneak peek at Paladina?

Rena took the blindfold off, as instructed. She had to squint against the light of the battery-operated lantern the boy carried and shone in her face. She shielded her eyes with a hand and the boy pointed the light into the black depths. They stood inside a large silent cavern. The cone of yellow light barely pierced the cave’s darkness. Black stone surrounded them. She couldn’t see the ceiling though she felt certain that she could touch the ceiling if she raised her arms.  But she didn’t test her senses. The boy had agreed to bring her to the apple only because she’d sworn he could keep the location secret by blindfolding her. Even so, he had taken a circuitous route. Good thing he didn’t know she could retrace every step they’d made.  

“Now we go through here,” the boy said, shining his lantern on a narrow opening in one wall.  

Rena inhaled sharply. She wasn’t claustrophobic, she just didn’t like tight spaces—no place to fight, no exit except the way you’d come. But she couldn’t back out now. She owed it to the team; they needed to know the Apple existed, that the risks they were taking were worth it. She nodded to the boy, lead on.

He disappeared into the fissure. Immediately, the light level dropped. Rena’s eyes tried to compensate, couldn’t. She hurried forward. The walls of the fissure had rows of smooth, narrow ribbons with sharp raised edges. The ceiling continued high above her head but several times she had to turn her head, else scrape her face or scalp. Ahkim would never have fit into this space. 

Want to Read More?

I hope you enjoyed this sneak peek at Paladina. Want to know more? You can read a little more here. Care to guess what comes next? Perhaps your guess will inspire me to write more for you to read.

Do You Have the War Gene?

In the United States, July is summer and Independence Day—a day born of a war. Was the war necessary? U.S. history classes say it was. But is war inevitable? Is it part of human nature or is it genetic? If it’s genetic, does everyone have it? Do you have the war gene?

US Army soldier on duty. Does he have the war gene?

Humans have the capacity for aggression, for violence. But why? Is it inborn? Then, why would any of us want or seek peace? Is there a peace gene, too? If war isn’t genetic, when did war become a thing to do?

The First War

“The first war in recorded history took place in Mesopotamia in 2700 BCE between Sumer and Elam.” (https://www.ancient.eu/war/) But it was not the first war. There are pictographs of armies at war dated to about 3500 BCE. Archeologists have found evidence of war in cemeteries and evidence of conflict and multiple violent deaths dating as early as 12,000 B.C. War definitely existed far back in human history.

War Defined

According to Merriam-Webster Dictionary, war is “a state of usually open and declared armed hostile conflict between states or nations.” So if it’s between states and nations, does that mean it couldn’t be genetic? 

The Warrior Gene

There isn’t a simple answer. The so-called “warrior gene,” monoamine oxidase A (MAOA), has been studied as a possible cause of violence. MAOA was identified in 1993 in a large Dutch family that was notorious for violence. Media picked up the story. Soon, MAOA acquired the nickname the “warrior gene.” The studies were terribly flawed, not conclusive, and hardly complete. There’s been very little study of this gene’s presence or absence in women. 

Behavioral or Genetic

Aggression is not a single trait, or an easily described behavioral system. It is not a thing that has evolved as a package, but rather it is a suite of behaviors that has a dynamic and complicated range of expression.

Psychology Today

You see, there are two camps that study violence. Both declare they study violence to seek peace. One camp believes that violence in humans is innate, part of our genes. The other camp believes that the humans capacity for violence is linked to societal and cultural pressures, and abuses sustained in childhood.

Both sides have legitimate claims. Historically, 70 societies never had societal violence. Person-on-person violence, yes, but no sign of a fighting between two large societal groups. It looks like war started after humankind began relying on agriculture. When they claimed a piece of land as theirs and relied on it to feed them, it became something that must be defended. It also became something someone else may have wanted for themselves.

Could it be that these new agricultural societies experienced a genetic change. Did a war gene appear? That would be difficult to determine until we know more about what genetic make up is a precursor to war. 

Is it in the Gray Cells?

In a recent study, the brains of violent criminals were scanned. They scanned criminals who committed murder, those who did other violent crimes, and those who did “nonviolent” crimes. The scans showed that the gray matter  of a murderer is significantly different than that of a criminal who committed other acts of violence.  

The study of the murderers isn’t a study of war, but it’s interesting to consider when one attempts to explain why humankind goes to war. If there is a war gene, does it need to be triggered by the societal and cultural influences?  

Questions

If the societal and cultural influences are solely responsible for wars, are we creating inevitability by waging wars? We know children survivors of war have emotional scars. Do those scars trigger the war gene?

Is the war gene what makes some people heroes? But, there are people who are not warriors and still do heroic things. Do they have a different genetic makeup?

If mankind has a war gene, does that mean war is inevitable? Must we return to hunter-gatherer societies to have a lasting peace? If there is no war gene, what if it’s our belief that war is inevitable that makes war inevitable?

What if we could create soldiers with the war gene? Should we? Or, should we attempt to eradicate the war gene from the human race?

This “chicken or the egg” question may mean that both sides are partly correct. What do you think? Is war inevitable? Do you know someone you suspect has the war gene? Do you have the war gene?