People are Smart in Different Ways Pt. 2

Vijai P. Sharma, Ph.D

In the previous article, five out of "ten prime intelligences" were described.  The remaining five are 
described in this one.

6.  Physical (Bodily) intelligence:  It is the ability to manipulate body and bodily movements and/or design products for the body.  When we think of an athlete, we think of a person who is not a bright chap and has to be promoted through school to play on the team.  The fact is that accomplished athletes are superbly intelligent.  Olympic athletes are geniuses.  Bodily intelligence is a highly complex and superior ability because it requires a lot of calculations, coordinated movements, intricate balance and posture, and manipulation of space in coordination with one's body.  

7.  Sensory Intelligence:  It is the ability to use one's senses, such as vision, hearing, and smell efficiently and fully.  We do not utilize our senses to their fullest extent.  We see but we don't observe, hear but don't listen, and touch but don't feel.  We live in a "fog."    In order to appreciate this thought, close one eye and see how much less you can see with only one eye open.  Sadly, though unknowingly, we do it all the time.  We operate on our environment with our senses partly closed.  

8.  Spiritual Intelligence:  It is the ability to live in harmony in relation to the Universe, the Nature, one's environment, and live in harmony with all human beings and animals.  The spiritually intelligent love  humanity, have an awe of the Universe, and a sense of presence of the higher power, the God.  The products of this intelligence are the universal love, kindness, and gentleness as part of the character of a person.  Prophets, saints, and other spiritual leaders of fame, were as much a genius as were   

Einstein and Newton.  If you are spiritual, you are smart.  Let's start associating smartness with spirituality.  

 As an interesting side issue, based on the comparative animal studies of brain size and structure, perhaps, dolphins have a high interpersonal and spiritual intelligence.  Dolphins are incredibly kind, humane, and highly sensitive to the needs of children and handicapped persons.     

9.  Creative Intelligence:  It is the ability to look at objects, events, and problems in an entirely new way.  Creative thinking is opposite of the conventional thinking.  Sometimes solutions can only come from a creative and imaginative thinking.  When we say a problem is "insoluble," what we mean is that the problem cannot be solved by conventional logic or means; such problems are often solved by a drastically different approach to the problem.  

 We think of genius scientists, like Newton and Einstein, as people who were gifted with exceptional logical and objective reasoning employed in Physics and Math.  The fact is that they were also gifted with exceptional creative intelligence.  Take for example, the law of gravity.  People had been seeing apples falling from the trees all the time, but it was Newton who looked at falling of an apple in a totally new way and discovered the force of gravity. 

 IQ tests and classroom tests are based on conventional thinking and logic.  Often, there is only one answer to a question as dictated by conventional thinking and logic.  If you get that specific answer, you get a score.  Creative thinking is about a different answer, an answer that we don't habitually think.  As a result of this, highly creative people have a miserable time in school.  They are often thinking about answers that will be "misses" rather than "hits." 

10.  The Intelligence of Intelligences:  It is the ability to use all other intelligences in an intelligent and purposeful manner.   Not all of us have adequate levels of this intelligence.  A lot of us don't even know what we got.  Many are gifted with extraordinary abilities, but they hardly utilize them to their fullest extent.  Their priorities are often messed up and they waste much too much time on insignificant and inconsequential matters.  

 So these are the ten intelligences.  Perhaps there are more.  It is best to say that there are "multiple," we don't exactly how many.  For instance, Gardner identifies yet another one, the Musical Intelligence.  After all, there are musical prodigies who display their extraordinary ability from early childhood.  Psychologists have not accounted for all the intelligences that are out there.   People have different combinations of these intelligences.  Some are valued more than others in a particular society at a given time.  Let this not prevent you from recognizing and developing yours.  Furthermore, intelligences are "fluid" rather than "fixed."   You can develop, to some extent, any of the intelligences with a purposeful effort.  

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Copyright 1996, Mind Publications 



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