intelligence squared

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Wednesday, 11 October 2006 04:22


'Auditory sequential thinkers are born to excel at procedural tasks like reading , spelling and short term memory . A visual spatial thinker will if equipped with the right tools excel with ideas , innovation , long term memory and an ability to handle complexity '

MYTH :the right side of the brain is the site of our creative, intuitive self and the left is the home of logic and rationality. If you are a logical type you are left-brained. If you are more artistic and touchy-feely, you are right-brained Lets get this right this is a myth , a myth that is both misleading and distorting . In certain circumstances as the brain races to keep up with fleeting subconscious images , a visual thinkers may attempt to think and speak very quickly . For this reason visual thinkers often have a trait normally associated with auditory thinkers , a high degree of verbal intelligence. [Source - minority reports NLP short course]

In simplistic terms the left hemisphere processes language listening decoding and processing The right hemisphere is more concerned with visual spatial tasks innovating inventing , visualising and gestalt reasoning [pattern completion] . In the case of catching a ball anticipating trajectory involves a degree of temporal fluidity projecting forward in time , that projection is where the myth of creativity and intuition comes from , not what is but what will or could be . The same process are at work when we play chess , we describe chess as a logical game . In contrast the left hemisphere analyzes processes and orders linguistic information , making sense of what has gone , the past tense .

Source Encyclopedia of Psychology

Research has confirmed that both hemispheres of the brain use high-level cognitive modes. That of the left brain is verbal and analytic, while right brain thought processes are rapid, complex, whole-pattern, spatial, and specialized for visual imagery and musical ability.

The general characteristics of right-brain thought processes include the tendency to synthesize rather than analyze relating to ideas and concepts in a concrete rather than a symbolic fashion. Where left-brain thinking tends to represent wholes by abstraction (using one piece of information to represent something larger) the right brain is more likely to interpret data through analogies ( seeing relationships between wholes ). Right-brain functioning is non temporal, non sequential , holistic - gestalt and intuitive. Relying on leaps of insight, hunches or visual images. Discoveries about the right- and left-brain hemispheres have led some researchers and educators to advocate educational reforms that would allow right-brain modes of thought a greater place in the current educational system. Reflecting an overall tendency to over reward the verbal analytical left-brain skills to societies detriment. As split-brain researcher Roger Sperry winner of the 1981 Noble prize for Medicine notes, our educational system "tends to neglect the nonverbal form of intellect. What it comes down to is that modern society discriminates against the right hemisphere " It must be remembered lest the message is misunderstood , Sperry was a long way from the stereotype of a traditional academic , a star athlete in his own right a member of a number of varsity teams and the captain of the basketball team . When he talks about non verbal intellect you must assume that he is talking about the sort visual spatial mind that works for want of a better analogy like predictive text . The sort of mind that is given a workout when you play basketball , baseball , soccer but also chess .

' Verbal and nonverbal conceptualizations are regarded as the two kinds of thinking. Verbal conceptualizations are linear and results from "thinking with the sounds of words" . A person composes mental sentences one word at a time at the same speed as speech, which is about 150 words a minute. In contrast, "picture thinking is estimated to be, overall, 400 to 2000 times faster than verbal thinking. Once information has been encoded picture thinking is all at once , it exists outside of time . Visual thinking is spatial existing in 3 Dimensions and not the 2 Dimensions of language '

Visual conceptualizations are regarded as evolutionary thinking superior to verbal conceptualization because a visual thinking style can be both faster and more complex .Auditory sequential thinkers are born to excel at procedural tasks like reading , spelling and short term memory . A visual spatial thinker will if equipped with the right tools excel with ideas , innovation , long term memory and an ability to handle complexity .

“It’s not that you have a special math module somewhere in your brain, but rather that the brain’s particular functional organization…predisposes it towards the use of high-level imagery and spatial skills, which in turn just happen to be very useful when it comes to doing math reasoning,” Michael O’Boyle, a psychologist at the University of Melbourne, Australia, in a public statement through the American Psychological Association .


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