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Re: Hype
#453 04/26/03 06:46 PM
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I quote a famous man called Fenyman, please ignore my spelling mistakes: "When someone says something simple, it's easy to know if its right or wrong. But when college kids say things which are complicated, one only can wonder. But i always know that they are wrong, because things are always simpler than you thought." I may of added somethings, but again, i ask that you ignore the mistakes.






Re: Hype
#454 04/29/03 09:23 PM
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Quite often that may be usefull. However, I direct you to the discussion of the philosophical position at hand, presumably Ockhams Razor, in Nicholas Fearn's accessibly book "How to think like a philosopher". Ockhams razor doesn't work so simply that a simple catch-phrase like that sums up its validity. One still needs to follow the argument in order to clarify their own position.
KO Philosopher-at-large








Re: Hype
#455 07/05/03 01:35 AM
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This is a very interesting discussion.

Too bad it is probably completely dead.

I found Kristoff's and mgrego2's statements to be particularly pertinent.

I believe the term "Genius" is thrown around too loosely and wildly. If Genius is to be found as easily as suggested, then the term Genius becomes ubiquitous and consequentially meaningless.

Kristoff, do you think that being aware of mental processes necessarily transcends them? That is, if I am aware of the reactions of my mind, and I include them self-referentially in conversation, does that mean anything whatsoever?

I may be aware of thoughts and feelings and yet this awareness may bring to bear no real effect upon them.

I suppose what I am saying is that being self-referential is not the same as being self-controlled.

Regarding another issue, I do see the value, however, in expanding upon binary thinking by trying to linguistically work your way around that trap. Both/and and at the same time neither/nor is always a fascinating place.

[This message has been edited by babayada (edited July 04, 2003).]






Re: Hype
#456 07/05/03 06:07 PM
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This is a great thread. Probably one of the more philosophically 'honest' of the threads that I come across here.

Let me start by saying that I have not purchased many of the products on this site. I purchased the photoreading book, but suspect that similar to many 'get smart' books it is better to use one of the guided programs.

Thus far, I have my doubts about the efficacy of 'photoreading' as I understand it or more specifically what I 'wish' it were.

The jury is still out on it and I will probably invest in the course because the potential benefits outweigh the cost of the program. If there were a 1.2.3. way to develop 'spontaneous activation(SA)' then the course would be a no-brainer to invest time effort and energy in. I would like to see some valid research to determine the rate at which (SA) occurs. Hell, I'd participate in a study.

I've looked at some of the memory optimizer descriptions and they are quick to bring out the fact that its main principal are different than 'association and pegging'. If the MO course is more effective than the MegaMemory style 'associations and pegging' then it would be highly impressive.

I've got perfect material to 'try' it out on. I'm doing an esperanto and GRE course using MegaMem techniques and SuperMemo. I'll give it a shot and give a very fair and honest report on the methodology.

To join the broader discussion, Genius is not a zero sum game. Everyone on the planet could be a genius. If they came up with a pill that raised your IQ, creativety, memory and tacit knowledge a thousand fold, we would all be geniuses. Some of us would still be smarter than others, but we would all exceed our current 'threshold' of mental ability defining genius.

That is one of the tough parts, defining genius. Some may define a long-term welfare person as a genius because they have found a way to 'beat the system' and avoid working. Your first instinct might be to say well no they are making a moral decision to take advantage of a flawed artificial system in order to avoid work. However, we wouldn't be as quick to deny the term 'genius' to someone who does essentially the same thing by investing money in the market or a business to avoid work. The only real differences are the approach and how the time 'not working' is spent.

How about the case that the welfare person has used the system to stay home and all they do is work on philosophy and math, they become extremely knowledgable but they never come up with any really orignal. Is this genius? Is it closer?

How about this case: The welfare person, uses their time to study science and genetics, then bam they figure out a way to just turn cancer off. Now are they a genius? More importantly does their going on welfare show an 'early' piece of genius?

Do we define genius by the means or the end? Is it something in between or is it hopelessly subjective?

The smartest guy in my high school (not just high grades), named Floyd, was a phenom in math, science, language etc. In my non professional opinion, I'm willing to bet Floyd was a 160-170 IQ range. He was reading, understanding and relating to Kant, Hiedegger and Ponte when we were in 7th and 8th Grade. Was/Is Floyd a genius? There is no doubt in my mind that he was/is. However,(you probably saw this coming), the last time I saw Floyd (about 5 years ago at the age of 26-27)he was bagging groceries at small local supermarket and had been doing so since he got kicked out of the local state university (where he was double majoring in Math and Chemical Engineering). He got kicked out because he would start these huge arguments in class and would start screaming at the professors.

I've always known I was a 'smart' person. I also knew from the time that I met Floyd that I was nowhere near being one of the smartest 'kinds' of people. I knew that there were people whos own mental abilities towered over mine. This realization was quite a relief for me. It was like finding my place in life by finding out where I wasn't. I wasn't pond scum and I wasn't troposhperic.

However, since my encounter with Floyd,I have always been fascinated by the concept of intelligence. I've always wondered what the difference between what Floyd had and what he didn't have.

Whenever, I think of Floyd when I see the part in Beautiful Mind when Dr. Nash is telling his hallucinations that "You're not real.", and the hallucinated 'G-Man' tells asks him "Is this what you've become, some useless Ghoul? The local Madman?"

Floyd is the 'Useless Ghoul' now. I still call him every year or so, he usually is cordial initially eventually slips into a hyper-intellectual rant about some obscure aspect of philosophy or mathematics or Popular music even. I truly feel for Floyd. I have joked with one of my brightest friends about the CIA initiating a "Geek Reclimation" program; where the CIA picks up types like Floyd and locks them in a basement at Langley and have them processing intelligence resources.

So the question remains, What is Genius? If this Genius Code program, helps us to access the quality that Floyd lacks then it addresses one side of the Genius equation but how about the other side. The pure mental ability side, understanding complex books (i.e. Process and Reality, Whitehead), understanding complex mathematics, physics and chemistry, remembering enough significant details to deal with big problems etc.

A true 'genius' program would have to deal at least with both sides of this issue. And as evidenced by Floyd they are not perfectly correlated items.

My own issues revolve around a few critical points. 'Stick to it', I've started more projects than most people even think about. My problem is that I'm a quitter. When things get to complicated and I feel like I could fail at it. I tend to back out of it and move on to something else that interest me rather than face failure.

This has gotten better over time. I have 'gone back' and completed many of my task: Half-read books, dropped college course, completing military schools etc.

I've done my current job longer than anything I've done before. I'm probably one of the best (top 100/20000) people in the field. I don't know why I've stuck with this so long...probably because it is commission based technical work and the pay system is almost a pure meritocracy.

But unfortunately, I feel like I have 'cheated' myself. My friend John gets on me all the time. He says, "You like doing your lock work because it is easy and profitable for you, plus it's unique; but you should be a doctor or a scientist of some kind. Of course you are one of the best at what you do...you should be doing something else."

So in a way I draw an analogy between myself and Floyd. What is it that John Nash, Watson and Crick or other nobel prize winners have that I don't?

I would feel a bit more confident about saying "This program is good or this methodogy is working for me." if I was some nobel physicist (which as you can see I generally consider the pinnacle of human development but for you it may be a pulitzer or some other grandiose recognition). But in actuality I'm just a Technician class. My angle has always been leadership. Not because I read the Prince and got some rank in the military. It's because I have a deep rooted desire to understand things and make them better (myself included).

To summarize, Genius is not a zero sum game, it is not limited by some certain Percentile definition. If more people got smarter...more people would be geni.

Genius is at least two sided. What Floyd had (and at that level)which is easier to measure progress on (see post Ultra High Ceiling IQ Test) and what Floyd did not have which seems impossible to measure potential for because it is defined as produced results. EQ? Common Sense? Restraint? Mental Stability? Very hard to say what this second aspect is but most of you reading this will know what aspect I'm talking about.

Anything that contributes 'significantly' to either of these two aspects is worth wrestling with.

I appreciate your attention to this and if you enjoy similar 'streams' let me know and I would love to correspond with similar 'searchers'.

Rob Reynolds
Drinkblot@yahoo.com






Re: Hype
#457 07/05/03 08:40 PM
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I hate to make generalizations here but ... it takes more than just genius to be successful in life. You have to have motivation, incentive, passion, and a vision for going beyond your existing paradigms and thermostat setting. A great deal of success depends on above average interpsersonal skills, social skills, intuitive skills, oral and verbal communication skills that many very intelligent individuals fail to develop. Who was it who said that the higher your IQ, the lonelier you are?

In short, one must look at success holistically and develop many of the abilities that school nerds have tended to avoid. To borrow a concept from nonlinear dynamical systems theory, you have to change your attractor fields to attract to yourself what you want in life. This is where you start using more of your brain and delve into nonlinear modes of information processing and Hegelian dialectics. The whole brain is not dedicated to logical, rational, linear, technical processing. Most people may use less than 10% of their brain but when they start using more of it, they find themselves going beyond the traditional logical, rationalist, positivist, materialist thinking into realms beyond. Real geniuses like Einstein and Tesla applied a more integrative mental processing approach as a matter of course.

People are where they are in life because they do not take action to get out of the rut they are in. In a feedback control system, you have to raise the setpoint provided by the negative feedback loop if you want to change the results. You change your mind and you can change your life.

One of the reasons we do not use more of our brain is because our brains are intensive consumers of the body's energy and oxygen and the body would have to work harder to support it. So the evolutionary efficient approach was to localize brain usage to a minimum area for efficiency's sake. If you want to use more of it, then first increase your efficient management of greater amounts of energy and oxygen. Pretty soon you'll be turning to yoga, meditation, and qigong but that's the kind of stuff that's normally avoided and outright rejected by most.

[This message has been edited by shr33m (edited July 05, 2003).]






Re: Hype
#458 07/06/03 05:09 AM
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Drinkblot,

As I was reading your post I really started to feel for you and your experiences. I have had similar ones ... though I don't consider myself in the top 100 of anything.

My intuition tells me that your experience of genius may lie outside of figuring things out. Rather, it probably lies in pioneering and creativity. You seem to be very adapt at figuring, of accumulating knowledge and learning to navigate with expertise within existing patterns.

What might be very exciting and rewarding for you is to take the body of knowledge you have in your current field of endeavor and excellence and mapping that space. Now take your finger and put it on a spot outside of that shape.

There's your area of experiementation, creativity, and pioneering, if you will.

I think Shr33m is really on to something, and I agree with what he (?) says.

I've enjoyed reading both your posts. You have good things to say.







Re: Hype
#459 07/07/03 06:38 AM
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It's good to see this thread go "all Romero" and come back to life.

As Drinkblot has experienced, possibly the most intelligent person I've ever met was a guy with whom I attended elementary and jr. high school. The guy was brilliant. He was a whiz at calculus and chemistry. He could write well. He socialized well. In fact, he was probably more well rounded than a lot of folks that are considered geniuses. (Was Einstein a genius or a savant?) Last I heard (12 years ago), he had dropped out of college and was working as a handyman. It seems almost a crime for the world to lose the benefit of that intellect.

But, and this points to something else in Drinkblot's post, it may well be that he is enjoying what he does and feeling fulfilled. Who is to say that this means he is wasting his life? If Drinkblot is challenging himself, enjoying his work, and getting paid at a level that he deems adequate, who is to say that this is a waste? This probably puts him way beyond a large percentage of the population who are just earning a paycheck. Maybe there is genius at work there...What if Drinkblot drops his profession and studies medicine for a significant portion of his life, and then decides he absolutely hates it? What happens to that ability that once seemed so effortless? What happens to the contentment that once existed? Even if he sailed through the program with excellent grades, what value is there if he hates his life? (At this point, I'm seriously hoping Drinkblot is a "he." If not, you are feeling VERY sleepy. Whenever you look at this paragraph, your mind automatically converts any he to she. Of course, as Hofstadter pointed out, the result would be that you eventually get only ssssssssssssssssssssssssssshe... and completely lose track of the thread).

Perhaps there is a more appropriate word than genius. What about that person who has learned to be effective on many levels and who applies those abilities to better the lives of those around them? If it doesn't usher us into a new age, does that make it any less valuable? I haven't clearly determined from the new posters what their definition of genius is. The most appropriate definition in Webster for genius is "a person endowed with transcendent mental superiority; especially: a person with a very high intelligence quotient
"

This suggests, as Shr33m has mentioned, a person who may or may not have other qualities that qualify them as "successful." Based upon Webster's definition of genius, the only difference between a savant and an idiot savant is an IQ score. So what?

Is personal genius a better term? If someone can exceed the perceived limitations of his/herself and of others around them, can they qualify as achieving personal genius? If they can extend their capabilities in a variety of disciplines, doesn't that qualify them? If by extending their capabilities on several fronts, they can improve their situation and, by extension, the situation of those closely related to them, can they qualify?

With apologies to Michael Gelb, there is probably not a product out there that can make me a DaVinci. However, if there are techniques out there that can get me closer, isn't there value to that? Maybe our own "elitist" view of what genius should be holds us back.






Re: Hype
#460 07/07/03 09:59 AM
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Thought this piece of information might be of interest to the folks following this thread.

quote:
The second interesting fact is that, concurrent with the global rise in psychic abilities, IQ is also increasing worldwide. The evidence of this rise has been collected by James Flynn of the University of Otago, in Dunedin, New Zealand.

This rise has been called the Flynn Effect. and it has intelligence experts perplexed, because the increas in IQ is coming primarily from an increase in only one area - pattern recognition. In areas like maths or arithmetic there is not much of a gain at all. When you understand the link between patterns and metaphysical ability, the reason for increasing IQ scores in this area is obvious. The human race is becoming more psychic.


Manual for the Mind 5 Keys to Psychic Ability by Catherine Wilkins ISBN 0 9578583 4 5 p 10-11

Alex

[This message has been edited by AlexK (edited July 07, 2003).]






Re: Hype
#461 07/07/03 04:50 PM
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There's nothing wrong with being in any type of work that you enjoy. That's what really matters - doing your dharma. Not everyone has to be a doctor, physicist or CEO. Everyone has a different definition of success.

Some people do their greatest work outside of their regular jobs. When Einstein published the paper that won him the Nobel Prize in Physics, he was employed in the Patent Office.

When you look at the large unused brain capacity, you have to wonder if humans had fully used it at one time having abilities like clairvoyance, telepathy, telekinesis, healing, etc. These skills must have been useful in meeting the large energy and oxygen requirements a fully utilized brain needs. And why did it fall into disuse? Was there an energy/oxygen famine? Or did Force begin to replace Power as the dominant paradigm?

It's only in the last decade or so that the collective human race raised its LoC level from 190 to 207 (thanks to a few individuals who saw fit to use more of their brains). Maybe we are coming full circle again as the post from Alex indicates.

(Note: The terms LoC, power, and force are used in the context of "Power vs. Force" by David Hawkins, MD, PhD)






Re: Hype
#462 07/07/03 06:50 PM
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Just to revivify this discussion, ostensibly about "Genius", I would like to add that I believe the word "Genius" does not float much meaning anymore except as a SOCIOLOGICAL category or label. It is synonomous which such labels as "intelligent", "smart", etc.etc. There is no essential metaphysically-discrete unit which one can use as an indicator of "Genius". In genealogy the word originated as a term for spirit, usually the spirit of a place. It indicated a sort of creative, or formative potential...not really an abstract, mind-like entity. I think it best now to drop this argument about the 'label' genius and to have everyone turn for themselves into an inner-experience of thinking. Is not all thought, given attention and allowed to express itself in consciousness, an expression of creativity? What is called thinking, for that matter? Do we not experience, in our 'problem-solving', breakthroughs of reorientation when some pattern, or meta-pattern has seized our consciousness, illuminating the phenomena-as-a-whole? How do we phrase this in terms of predication, of cause-and-effect? Is it I created this thought, thus, or this thought created I? Can one say that it is both, and still maintain that 'intuitive' sense of knowing- does it account for the phenomena at hand? If we are to speak of I, do we not need a more implicit recognization that is not a static, metaphysical entity?
And finally, to deconstruct this grammar still more: Is it not an error of grammatical predication that we assume that some 'appearance' requires behind it that 'which-is-appearing', or the creator-in-itself (i.e. does the chain of causality, conceived in our prevalent usage inevitably lead to the trap of the Causa Sui, or the final, or original Cause, from whence the notion of the creator deity arises?)?

If one slowly reflects on the above, and in the spirit of experimentation enters into their own experience of thinking, it will bring about the beginnings of a reordering of linguigrammaticosemantic- there's a word for you-- awareness which can lead to the beginnings of freedom and liberation in thought and experience. I firmly believe, as a matter of my own experience, that the riddles of that elusive nature which we deem "genius" begin to manifest from that freedom. The creative potential liberates itself from unconscious conditioning.

For a better world,
Kristoff Olafsson








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